There are no precise statistics mapping the phenomenon in Italy, but the practice is commonplace throughout Europe as a result of strong waves of migration. Associations have been working for some time to provide help and assistance to child-brides, whose refusal to comply is punished by isolation and solitude.
ActionAid and Trama di Terre have launched an experimental scheme in Italy, with the support of the Vodafone Italia foundation, creating a national and international network of operators and organisations to share the best practices and provide training.
The scheme, presented in Rome, includes awareness-raising activities among citizens and plans to put pressure on the government and Parliament so that legislative instruments can be put into place, beginning with an extension of Article 18 of the Single Text in protection of victims of trade to women who are victims of forced marriages.
"We will try to give a voice to all of the women who have turned to us for help in the last few years and whom politicians ignore, dismissing the problem as one of a purely familial and private nature," said Tiziana Dal Pra, the chair of Trama di Terre, an association that operates in Emilia Romagna, helping women who suffer from violence. "We need to succeed in combining tradition and religion in respect of human rights," added the chair of the Vodafone Italia Foundation, Antonio Berardi. (ANSAmed).