Intro
Engelsk • English

Forced marriage

Forced marriage is when a young woman or a young man is pressured by their family into getting married. This pressure can be physical or psychological. Forcing or pressuring someone into getting married is illegal in Norway and Norwegian law regards forced marriage as a serious offence. It is also illegal to take a young person out of Norway to another country and force them into getting married there.

In recent years, forced marriage among young people with immigrant backgrounds has become a much discussed topic. Politicians and others regard forced marriage as a serious problem and are trying to find ways of putting a stop to it.

What does Norwegian law say about marriage?

“Women and men have the same right to freely choose a spouse. A marriage shall be entered into voluntarily and with one’s consent.” From section 1a of The Marriage Act.

“In the case of forced marriage, anyone who through violence, loss of liberty, improper pressure or other unlawful conduct, or by threatening such conduct, forces another to enter into a marriage shall be punished. The punishment for forced marriage is 6 years. Aiding and abetting shall be punished in the same manner.” Section 222, subsection two, of the Norwegian Penal Code.

There are several organisations that try to help young people who feel they have been subjected to pressure to get married.

For example, the Oslo Red Cross International Centre (ORKIS) runs a forced marriage telephone helpline. You can call them if you need help or want to talk to someone. Everyone who works here is subject to a duty of secrecy and you do not have to give your name if you do not wish to do so. The call is free. You can call on weekdays between 09:00 and 18:00. The telephone number is: 815 55 201.

How would you define force?

Why does Norwegian society regard forced marriage as a problem?

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