Eritrean men are being threatened with jail unless they marry more than one wife, reports say.
A statement allegedly issued by the government of Eritrea is reportedly ordering men to marry at least two wives due to acute shortage of men caused by enormous casualties suffered during the civil war with Ethiopia. In the statement written in Arabic the government gave the assurance that it will give financial support to the polygamous marriages.
A translation of the statement states:
“Based on the law of God in polygamy, and given the circumstances in which the country is experiencing in terms of men shortage, the Eritrean department of Religious Affairs has decided on the following .”
First that every man shall marry at least two women and the man who refuses to do so shall be subjected to life imprisonment with hard labour.
“The woman who tries to prevent her husband from marrying another wife shall be punished to life imprisonment,” alleges the activists in their translation.
May 1998 to June 2000 Eritrean-Ethiopian war saw 150,000 soldiers killed from either sides but having a bigger impact on male population in the tiny Eritrea nation who were then just 4million people in total.