Child marriage kills more than 60 girls a day globally and six girls a day in South Asia, according to a new analysis released on the International Day of the Girl Child that claimed over an estimated 22,000 girls a year are dying from pregnancy and childbirth resulting from child marriage.
The report by Save The Children said South Asia sees 2,000 child marriage-related deaths every year (or six every day), followed by East Asia and the Pacific with 650 deaths (or two every day), and Latin American and the Caribbean, with 560 annual deaths (or nearly two a day).
“More than an estimated 22,000 girls a year are dying from pregnancy and childbirth resulting from child marriage. Child marriage kills more than 60 girls a day, globally and 6 girls a day in South Asia,” the report noted.
However, West and Central Africa has the highest rate of child marriage in the world and accounts for nearly half (9,600) of all estimated child marriage-related deaths globally, or 26 deaths a day.
In a global report released on Monday by Save the Children, Global Girlhood Report 2021: Girls’ rights in crisis, the organization is calling on governments to raise girls’ voices by supporting their right to safe and meaningful participation in all public decision-making, address immediate and ongoing risks of gender-based violence, including child marriage, by putting girls’ rights and gender equality at the centre of Covid-19 and humanitarian responses, development policy, and wider efforts to build forward better.
The organization also demanded that governments must guarantee the rights of all girls, including those impacted by different forms of inequality and discrimination (including on the basis of gender, race, disability, economic background, etc.), by developing inclusive policies and programs.