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Kurdish men marry second-wife in Kirkuk

Kurdish men marry second-wife in Kirkuk


Peregraf - Haval Zangana


After he lost all hope for a second marriage in the Kurdistan Region, Qadir Majid went to Kirkuk, to marry his second wife without any legal restrictions. However, such marriages give rise to other legal problems later in the region.


Peregraf
learnt that when already-married men want to remarry, they seek to do it in the courts of federal provinces and the disputed areas, due to the absence of legal barriers.


Qadir Majid, 55, spoke to Peregraf, "A relative advised me to go to Kirkuk Court. I hired a lawyer there, and he completed the entire process for a sum of money. The judge did not ask me anything about my first wife."


Although the judge knew Majid had another wife, the process went on smoothly.


His first marriage was in the 1980s, with five children. Majid said his first wife agreed to the second marriage, but he was not granted permission to remarry by the courts of the Kurdistan Region. The law which used to prevent remarriage is 188 of 1959, Iraqi Civil Code.


Kurdistan parliament amended the law in 2008 to add some conditions to remarriage, including the consent of the first wife, or in some unusual cases when the first wife suffers from a chronic illness, or is unable to bear children. The man should be able to provide for both wives. He should fill a form in the court as a guarantee to be fair to both only if the first wife does not have any objection to such an arrangement in the first place.


The law imposes a six-month to one-year imprisonment for any violation, with 10 million punitive damages (8,000$).


Selar Salar, a lawyer in the Kurdistan Region, commented about the issue, "The Iraqi courts facilitate the process of re-marriage, but consequent issues with the first wife are brought to the courts of the Kurdistan Region."


The Kurdish law which favours the rights of women has not been able to put an end to the issue.


Salar said men often marry the second wife in secret, and when revealed, they pay financial compensation or divorce the second wife in absentia.


According to the Iraqi Civil Code, the second marriage only requires a judge's consent, who gives his approval after looking at the man's financial capacity and good faith.


Iraqi law also overlooks conditions such as when the man wants to marry a widower.


Two sources in Kirkuk Court said many Kurdish men from the Kurdistan Region appear to complete similar processes, as the court does not ask them for the first wife's consent, but only for the evidence that she was informed.


Peregraf
could not obtain accurate statistics concerning the matter, as most of the re-marriages are done in the federal courts of Iraq.


A former Kurdish parliamentarian and a member of the Women’s Union in Kurdistan, Talar Latif told Peregraf, "Despite amendments to the law in the Kurdistan Region, the law should be enforced such that marrying the second wife is totally banned."


She said unless the law bans the process entirely, it will continue.


According to the statistics of the Judicial Council in the Kurdistan Region, more than 500 wives provided consent for their husband to marry the second wife between 2013 and 2017.


The spokesman of Confrontation of Domestic Violence, Hiwa Karim, said most of such cases are outside the courts of the Kurdistan Region.


Some cases are brought to his department, he said, where they work on them.


Most men cite religious reasons when they want to marry the second wife.


Majid already had his second marriage contracted by a religious practitioner before going to court, "The judge asked the reason for the marriage. However, that was the only question. He signed the contract without any problem."

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Kurdish men marry second-wife in Kirkuk

2019-01-23 15:17:47


Peregraf - Haval Zangana


After he lost all hope for a second marriage in the Kurdistan Region, Qadir Majid went to Kirkuk, to marry his second wife without any legal restrictions. However, such marriages give rise to other legal problems later in the region.


Peregraf
learnt that when already-married men want to remarry, they seek to do it in the courts of federal provinces and the disputed areas, due to the absence of legal barriers.


Qadir Majid, 55, spoke to Peregraf, "A relative advised me to go to Kirkuk Court. I hired a lawyer there, and he completed the entire process for a sum of money. The judge did not ask me anything about my first wife."


Although the judge knew Majid had another wife, the process went on smoothly.


His first marriage was in the 1980s, with five children. Majid said his first wife agreed to the second marriage, but he was not granted permission to remarry by the courts of the Kurdistan Region. The law which used to prevent remarriage is 188 of 1959, Iraqi Civil Code.


Kurdistan parliament amended the law in 2008 to add some conditions to remarriage, including the consent of the first wife, or in some unusual cases when the first wife suffers from a chronic illness, or is unable to bear children. The man should be able to provide for both wives. He should fill a form in the court as a guarantee to be fair to both only if the first wife does not have any objection to such an arrangement in the first place.


The law imposes a six-month to one-year imprisonment for any violation, with 10 million punitive damages (8,000$).


Selar Salar, a lawyer in the Kurdistan Region, commented about the issue, "The Iraqi courts facilitate the process of re-marriage, but consequent issues with the first wife are brought to the courts of the Kurdistan Region."


The Kurdish law which favours the rights of women has not been able to put an end to the issue.


Salar said men often marry the second wife in secret, and when revealed, they pay financial compensation or divorce the second wife in absentia.


According to the Iraqi Civil Code, the second marriage only requires a judge's consent, who gives his approval after looking at the man's financial capacity and good faith.


Iraqi law also overlooks conditions such as when the man wants to marry a widower.


Two sources in Kirkuk Court said many Kurdish men from the Kurdistan Region appear to complete similar processes, as the court does not ask them for the first wife's consent, but only for the evidence that she was informed.


Peregraf
could not obtain accurate statistics concerning the matter, as most of the re-marriages are done in the federal courts of Iraq.


A former Kurdish parliamentarian and a member of the Women’s Union in Kurdistan, Talar Latif told Peregraf, "Despite amendments to the law in the Kurdistan Region, the law should be enforced such that marrying the second wife is totally banned."


She said unless the law bans the process entirely, it will continue.


According to the statistics of the Judicial Council in the Kurdistan Region, more than 500 wives provided consent for their husband to marry the second wife between 2013 and 2017.


The spokesman of Confrontation of Domestic Violence, Hiwa Karim, said most of such cases are outside the courts of the Kurdistan Region.


Some cases are brought to his department, he said, where they work on them.


Most men cite religious reasons when they want to marry the second wife.


Majid already had his second marriage contracted by a religious practitioner before going to court, "The judge asked the reason for the marriage. However, that was the only question. He signed the contract without any problem."