22.10.2020 'Bride Kidnapping': a Growing Hidden Crime
In at least 17 countries around the world, girls are being kidnapped, abducted, raped and forced into marriage. From China to Mexico to Russia to southern Africa. In each of these lands, there are communities where it is routine for young women and girls to be plucked from their families, raped and forced into marriage. Few continents are not blighted by the practice, yet there is little awareness of these crimes, and few police investigations. Elsewhere, the practice has emerged from a twisting of a traditional culture that has made communities turn a blind eye, allowing it to thrive. In Kyrgyzstan – one of the few places to collect data – the practice has been on the increase since the fall of communism. Up to a third of all ethnic Kyrgyz women in Kyrgyzstan are kidnapped brides, and some studies suggest that, in certain regions, the rates of bride kidnapping account for up to 80 per cent of marriages. A shortage of women in China, blamed on people having sex-specific abortions because of the one-child policy, has resulted in men being willing to go to extreme lengths to find a wife. Future grooms pay kidnappers between USD420 and USD500 to find them a bride. Dealers in wives will often go to Vietnam, where women are a less scarce commodity, capture young women, and smuggle them across the border to their new Chinese "husbands". Credit: IN THE NOW
Poverty deprives people of adequate education, health care and of life's most basic necessities- safe living conditions (including clean air and clean drinking water) and an adequate food supply. The developed (industrialized) countries today account for roughly 20 percent of the world's population but control about 80 percent of the world's wealth.
Poverty and pollution seem to operate in a vicious cycle that, so far, has been hard to break. Even in the developed nations, the gap between the rich and the poor is evident in their respective social and environmental conditions.