Bologna, 19-year old girl escapes forced marriage and abuse

ROME – A 19-year-old girl from Bologna managed to run away from home after she was continuously beaten and starved when she refused an arranged marriage.  

 Two days before her escape, her family started starving her and would only give her ‘strange’ tasting milk, which made her fall asleep and wake up with severe headaches.

 According to the testimony of the young woman, her father had been violent toward her after discovering she had fallen in love with a young compatriot of hers and had started a relationship with him, he beat and kicked her, even threatening her that he was going to ‘cut her throat’.

 She immediately left following the incident and informed the teachers at her high school of the abuse who then alerted the Bologna police. 

 She was interviewed and formalized her complaint to the police accusing her family of physical abuse and forced marriage, after the initial report from the school. 

 The principal of the school is now hosting the girl until the authorities find a protected environment for her to stay in whilst she finishes her education. 

 The school had been concerned for the girl for a while after she did not come to school for a few days and wasn’t answering her cellphone, her family called the school saying she was sick, but the following day the girl showed up with bruises on her neck. 

 The girl is now in the care of the school and is in continuous contact with the authorities and an anti-violence center which are trying to stabilize her situation.