The Philippines wants to outlaw child marriage. But in Muslim-majority Bangsamoro, change will be hard

Ayesha Merdeka wants child marriages to be a thing of the past. They aren’t an abstract concept to her – they are the reality she has lived with for more than three decades after her grand wedding at the age of 15 made a splash in newspapers and magazines across the Philippines.She is a member of a politically influential clan in what is now the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) – where most of the 3.8 million residents are Muslim, in contrast with the rest of the…

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