Unintended pregnancy and unsafe abortion are serious public health issues in the Arab region that often go ignored, jeopardizing the health of women and families and placing a burden on society as a whole.
Abortion continues to be a key contributor to maternal mortalities and morbidities in the Arab states region.
Girls are subject to child marriage, female genital mutilation and limited education and as such, are denied equality of opportunities.
This position paper presents several strong arguments about why it is imperative to address child marriage and adolescent pregnancy, if we want to succeed in harnessing the demographic dividend in West and Central Africa.
Child marriage in West and Central Africa is one of the biggest challenges in the region and has enormous adverse effects on education, health, including sexual and reproductive health, and on the overall development of adolescents and youth.
This report is a call to decision makers, parents, communities and to the world to end child marriage. It documents the current scope, prevalence and inequities associated with child marriage.