ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The Kurdistan Region’s Court of Cassation recently released divorce rate statistics for 2018, with the number of separations soaring in the Kurdish provinces.
The province of Erbil recorded 2,985 cases of divorce in 2017, but the number rose to 3,598 in 2018, marking a 20 percent increase.
The divorce rate spiked considerably in Sulaimani, the largest province in the autonomous Kurdistan Region in terms of population. With only 1,360 cases in 2017, it stands in stark contrast to the 4,085 divorces registered in 2018, a 200 percent increase.
The province of Duhok, a more conservative area of the Kurdistan Region, witnessed a small bump in divorces, from 1,384 to 1,509 in 2018.
The Court of Cassation also records the types of marriages registered. In Erbil, there were 15,025 marriages in 2018, with 36 of them being the acquiring of a second wife.
In Sulaimani, 13,836 marriages were recorded, 48 of which were also men wedding a second woman. Some 10,902 marriages were registered in Duhok, with 89 of them being plural marriages.
“The rate of divorces in the Kurdistan Region is alarming,” Latif Hassan, a social analyst, told Kurdistan 24 on Monday, stating the root causes are varied and many.
Omar Ahmed Mohammed, the spokesperson of the Sulaimani Court of Cassation, told Kurdistan 24 that the main reasons people are getting divorced are the financial situation of the couples, their social media activity, whether they were forced into a marriage or a divorce, imposed by families, and the screening of popular TV shows and dramas that normalize divorce and influence people’s social views.
The Kurdistan Region has a population of almost six million people, with 1.4 million refugees and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) residing in the autonomous region.
Editing by Nadia Riva