hat tip-Margo I.


The entire MAT report, “Liberation from Forced Marriages,” is posted at http://www.matribunal.com/downloads/MAT%20Forced%20Marriage%20Report.pdf 
Britain’s Muslim community is facing a ‘crisis’ over forced marriages
‘Crisis’ of forced marriages
June 11, 2008
Britain’s Muslim community is facing a “crisis” because hundreds of forced marriages go unreported and unnoticed, a legal group has said.
According to the Muslim Arbitration Tribunal (MAT), more than 70% of marriages in the Muslim community which involve a foreign spouse have some element of coercion or force.
In its Liberation from Forced Marriage report the organisation also claims young Muslims in Britain are “under siege” from older generations and alienated from mosques.
The MAT claims that while there are currently 300 reported cases of forced marriages brought to the attention of the police and government authorities, the true figure is in the thousands.
The report says: “These figures reflect the crisis that has loomed within the Muslim community without being noticed or dealt with for the past two decades. The figures that are reported to the authorities are only the tip of the iceberg.”
According to the report, forced marriages are a reality for many young Muslims in the UK.
It adds: “Young Muslims in Britain are under siege from their elders and parents because of the generational and cultural gap. They are alienated from the mosques because these mosques are mainly controlled by the elder generation.”
The report recommends that Muslim community leaders work alongside the Home Office and Foreign Office to resolve the issue. It also calls for a summit on forced marriages to be held at Downing Street with the Prime Minister.
Shaykh Faiz Siddiqi, chairman of the MAT’s governing council, said it was crucial that the Muslim community worked alongside the Government.
He said: “We will work closely with the Government. It has to be joined forces but up to now the leadership of the Muslim community have not been forthcoming. We are trying to achieve an awareness that the community is now taking very bold steps to self-regulate.”
Copyright © 2008 The Press Association. All rights reserved.
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Initiative on Forced Marriages – Press Release

Muslim Arbitration Tribunal
Higham Grange, Watling Street, Nuneaton, CV11 6BE
Telephone: 02476 325859 Fax: 02476 320708 Mob: 07530867596
Web: www.matribunal.com Email: [email protected]

Press Release
Tuesday 10th June 2008

MAT offers a platform for solutions to forced marriages.

MAT seeks to root out forced marriages from
the Muslim Community.


The Muslim Arbitration Tribunal will launch it’s [sic] proposals within the Muslim Community for discussion and support of the Muslim Community to root out forced marriages in their midst.

At a presentation to be given to leading Muslim Community scholars and representatives at 10:00 am on Thursday 12th June 2008 at Friends House, 173 Euston Road, London, NW1 2BJ, Shaykh Faiz Siddiqi, Chairman of the Governing Council of the Muslim Arbitration Tribunal, alongside Judges of MAT will offer dynamic solutions to stamping out forced marriages within the Muslim Community.

For decades, young Muslim men and women have been forced into marriages out of a false sense of duty and honour. Much unhappiness and at times violence has resulted inflicting pain on the individuals concerned.

The Government’s legislation through the introduction of the Forced Marriages Act 2008 is welcomed. The question being asked in the Muslim Community is does it go far enough?

Shaykh Faiz Siddiqi will inform the Muslim leaders that the extent of the problem of forced marriages within the Muslim Community is grossly underestimated. In fact over 70% of the marriages which include a foreign spouse have some element of coercion or force. The true figure is not in the hundreds but in the thousands.

The lecture will be based on a report containing a summary of key findings relating to forced marriages within the Muslim community. The report will recommend an action plan for community, government and other NGOs in tackling the crisis of forced / coerced marriages. The report will be available at the lecture.

Shaykh Faiz Siddiqi will propose that the discussion at the Friends House in London be extended to 15 other towns and cities throughout the United Kingdom, which will also invite and welcome participation from local and national Government agencies. 
For further details please contact the MAT Press Office on tel: 07530867596, 02476 325859 or fax: 02476 320708 and speak to Mr. Qamar Bhatti. Email [email protected]




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