Dealing with an undercover reporter, BBC Arabic’s Nawal Al-Maghafi investigates Shia clerics at several of Iraq’s holiest shrines. She uncovers the grooming and exploitation of susceptible girls and women, caught into prostitution and pimped down by an elite that is religious. a new widow alleges that a cleric from a significant shrine sold her to his buddies in a prostitution band, while key recording reveals another cleric performing a pleasure marriage with a woman he thinks become just 13.
Each year an incredible number of Shia Muslims visit revered holy shrines like Karbala and Baghdad’s Kadhimiya region. In wedding workplaces close to the shrines, some clerics are selling pleasure marriages. In a society like Iraq, where unmarried partners can’t have intercourse, a pleasure marriage permits a person to cover a short-term wife. They’re illegal, but some clerics say they’re allowed under Islamic law and can be a source of income for divorcees or widows under Iraqi civil law.
Nawal Al-Maghafi hears annoying allegations that some clerics are earning profits assisting males who would like intercourse with really girls that are young. In Karbala, Iraq’s most important spiritual town, the undercover reporter is introduced up to a cleric who provides the shocking spiritual advice that pleasure wedding with a kid is halal: “Nine years old plus, there’s no problem.” Foreplay and anal intercourse are allowed, he states, provided that the person prevents going for a girl’s virginity that is young.