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Morocco teen forced to marry 'rapist' assaulted over divorce

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

A Moroccan teen forced into marrying her alleged rapist last year has been attacked with a razor blade and beaten by him for seeking a divorce, media reported Tuesday.

The 17-year-old only identified as Khaoula was attacked in Marrakech on Saturday after filing for divorce, the Tel Quel weekly said, citing the AMDH independent rights group.

She suffered multiple cuts which "disfigured" parts of her body and required about 40 stitches, the French-language weekly reported.

Al Aoula television quoted a doctor at Marrakech's Ibn Tofail hospital, where she was treated, as saying that the teenager had been "struck in the face 50 times and had wounds on her hands and arms".

"I swear that nobody will marry you after me," Khaoula's husband was reported to have said to her, according to several media outlets.

Since the attack, non-governmental organisations have pledged to help the young woman to seek justice, the head of the AMDH rights group, Omar Arbib, told AFP.

In January, Morocco scrapped the highly controversial law that allowed rapists of children to escape punishment if they marry their victims.

The offending article made international headlines in March 2012 when Amina Filali, 16, killed herself after being forced to marry the man who had raped her, and who remained free.

As in numerous other Arab countries, sexual harassment of women is commonplace in Morocco, despite the adoption of a new constitution in 2011 that enshrines gender equality and urges the state to promote it.

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