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Call to ban arranged marriages

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08:15 CEST+02:00
A senior Stockholm politician is calling for a ban on arranged marriages and for social services to be allowed to investigate honour-related issues involving young people without first contacting their parents.

The proposals come from Ulf Kristersson, who holds the Social Affairs portfolio on Stockholm council, and Kickis Åhré Älgamo, who leads a Stockholm project that combats Stockholm's honour-related issues.

The pair, writing in Dagens Nyheter, said it was "pure discrimination" for Sweden to allow arranged marriages in cases where such unions are part of the culture in the family's home countries.

"Forced marriages are naturally not allowed in Sweden," they wrote.

"This provides little comfort to those young people pushed every year into arranged marriages by their relatives."

They also called for the government and education authorities to ban schools from allowing pupils to use cultural or religious background as a reason to skip lessons such as physical education or sex education. They cited a recent doctoral thesis in which 27 percent of foreign-born girls interviewed were banned from some lessons.

The article's publication date comes eight years to the day after a 19-year-old Swedish girl, Pela Atroshi, was shot dead in Iraqi Kurdistan. She was said to have dishonoured her family by wanted to live in a western style.

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