A 15-YEAR-OLD Saudi Arabian bride married to a 90-year-old groom escaped the marital home after barricading herself in a room on the wedding night.
The unnamed husband is now suing her parents for recovery of the €13,200 dowry he paid to secure marriage to his child bride.
Newspaper reports said the girl had managed to secure herself in the marital bedroom before escaping two days later to her parents' home.
The groom told Al-Hayat newspaper that he suspected that the girl and her parents had set out to swindle him of the dowry of 65,000 Saudi Riyals. "I feel that there is a conspiracy by her mother against me," he said. "I will go to court tomorrow and demand that her parents give me back my money."
Campaigners in Saudi Arabia have called on the authorities to intervene to ensure that the girl is not returned to the man.
Saudi Arabia has no minimum legal age for marriage but its government has said it was working on introducing one for the "safety of young girls".
Ali Abdul Rahman al-Roumi, a university researcher, reported last year that more than 5,000 girls below the age of 14 were married off each year in Saudi Arabia. (© Daily Telegraph, London)