A documentary that was released by BBC showed a Shia Priest saying it is okay to marry a 9-year-old girl, and it also revealed that young Iraqi girls are being sold for temporary marriages that are done for pleasure, which only last for an hour.
In the documentary, which is called Undercover With The Clerics – Iraq’s Secret Sex Trade, it showed Shia Clerics offering “pleasure marriages” to men.
One Shia Clerics claimed it is no problem to marry girls that are 9-year-old under the laws of Islam.
This practice is prohibited in Iraq, but 8 Shia Clerics that were approached by BBC News agreed to carry it out. They asked 10 clerics in total.
One of the clerics even offered to help procure young girls.
This horrible religious rite is really old, and it was intended to allow men to have a legitimate relationship while they were away from their wives.
But some Shia Clerics and other men in Iraq have abused the old religious rite and are using it as a way to child prostitution.
When one of the clerics was asked if it is okay to marry a young girl and have a sexual relationship with her, the cleric said: “According to Sharia, there’s no problem.”
The undercover reporter asked the cleric if he was exploiting the girl, and the cleric replied, “no way”.
In the documentary, another cleric was secretly filmed by the crew of BBC, and the undercover reporter asked if it was okay to marry a 13-year-old virgin girl.
The cleric said “just be careful she does not lose her virginity” and went on a lecture, in which he suggested other forms of sexual interactions.
When the reporter asked what if the girl gets hurt, the Shia Cleric said that is something that stays between you and the child.
The same cleric went on and even told the undercover reporter that he could help him procure girls and conduct the marriages.
The cleric reassured that there was no child exploitation taking place as the child was “willing and you paid her.”
According to the documentary, the duration of the sexual marriage should be specified before the marriage takes place.
The documentary said a person could marry a child from one hour to 99 years.
According to some young girls, clerics gave them contraceptive injections that kept them away from getting pregnant even while having sexual intercourse with a man.
The barbaric practice was banned under the rule of Saddam Hussein and is still illegal in Iraq.
One girl claims she can’t even remember the number of times she had been married and said she does this to have a stable income.
Talking about the documentary, the spokesperson of the Iraqi Government said they can’t do anything about the child exploitation if the girls don’t come to them and register a complaint against the clerics.
The spokesperson said, “If women don’t go to the police with their complaints against clerics, it’s difficult for the authorities to act.”
A 14-year-old girl said she might have a hard time finding a husband in the future, especially if a man finds out she is not a virgin.