Interior Ministry launches information campaign against child marriage

"Deprived of Adolescence" by photographer Daro Sulakauri had won the Best Documentary Photo nomination of the EU Journalism Prize in Georgia in 2015. Photo:Daro Sulakauri, 17 Jun 2019 - 15:52, Tbilisi,Georgia

The Georgian Interior Ministry has launched an information campaign against child marriage.

The presentation of the campaign was held at Rooms Hotel today, where Deputy Interior Minister Natia Mezvrishvili called on the public to immediately inform police of cases of early marriage.

We have enough resources to act in time and save minors,” Mezvrishvili said.

She highlighted the importance of education stating that minors should not be deprived of the right.

The process of handing over information booklets. Photo: Interior Ministry.

The campaign aims to eliminate child marriage and increase social awareness about the availability and reliability of the police to react to information in a timely manner.

“Do not take childhood away” is the campaign name.

Various events including meetings with regional population, local government officials, schoolchildren and teachers will be held during the campaign.

Patrol police officers will hand out information booklets to the population across the country and give out information on the campaign goals.

The campaign presentation at Rooms Hotel. Photo: Interior Ministry. 

The campaign is conducted with the support of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) as part of the UN programme for gender equality.  

Law enforcers are mostly informed several months after the early marriage”, the Department of Human Rights Protection of the Interior Ministry reports.

The department says the lack of social awareness is the main challenge.

Georgian photographer Daro Sulakauri's photo project 'Deprived of Adolescence' focuses on the child marriage problem in Georgia. Photo: Daro Sulakauri 

The Interior Ministry launched investigations into 180 cases of child marriage in 2018.

As UNICEF says ‘child marriage is defined as a marriage of a girl or boy before the age of 18 and refers to both formal marriages and informal unions in which children under the age of 18 live with a partner as if married.’

In general, child marriage applies to both girls and boys but girls are more affected worldwide.