Iraqi paid $2,140 in dowry to each of his brides

April 28, 2012

The Iraqi man who married two women in the same evening had paid 2.5 million Iraqi dinars ($2,140) in dowry to each of them.

“The dowry money was paid in the afternoon of the wedding attended by relatives and residents of the village who appeared to be divided over the merits of the marriage,” Iraqi daily Azzaman reported. “Each of the brides has her separate room in the home of the groom’s father.”

Abdul Rahman Nayef Al Obaidi, a 22-year-old Iraqi farmer who works with his father, said that he married the two women after he felt he loved them both and could not make a final choice. Marrying both of them seemed to him the solution to the dilemma.

“My son loved both girls and I supported him because I did not want to let him down,” his mother told the daily. “He did not wish either of them to be unhappy,” she said.

Consultations and negotiations for the marriage in a village 200 kilometres north of the capital Baghdad lasted more than one month.

The father said that he was proud of his son, the only one among four brothers to take two wives.

However, several women said that the unusual wedding gave a bad name to traditions.

“It is obvious that some people are abusing Islam’s solutions to very specific problems,” said Naziha Mohammad, a teacher. “The concept of polygamy is much more significant and goes much deeper than simple religious excuses used by some people to take more than one wife,” she said.

Hayat, a fashion designer, said that traditions are still a dominant factor in making decisions that are then attributed to Islam.

In October 2010, a 23-year-old Pakistani man made headlines after he married two women in 24 hours.

Azhar Haidri has gained national attention for his unusual solution to a predicament over marrying the woman he loved or accepting the marriage arranged by his family.

Pakistani law allows polygamy, but men who take second wives usually wait for years and must get approval from their first wives prior to a second marriage.

Haidri initially refused to marry 28-year-old Humaira Qasim, the woman to whom he was engaged since childhood, and wanted to marry the woman with whom he loved Rumana Aslam, 21.

But the decision threatened to split his family apart since arranged marriages are customary in Pakistan.

“I gave this offer that I will marry both of them,” Haidri said ahead of his first marriage to Humaira in the central Pakistani city of Multan. “Both the girls agreed.”

The two women reportedly accepted the compromise.



About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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