Outrage as 12-year-old boy is set to marry his 11-year-old cousin after receiving father's blessings

A 12-year-old boy is set to wed his 11-year-old cousin - sparking outrage among activists.

The engagement between Omar, 12, and Gharam, 11, was announced at the wedding of Nasser Hassan's eldest son.

Mr Hassan made the announcement that Omar will be marrying Gharam to "double the joy" at his eldest son's special day in Egypt.

He has told local newspapers that there is "nothing inappropriate" about the engagement, insisting that it is simply "an engagement, not a marriage".

But while the family are supportive of the wedding, activists have spoken out against the arranged union between the children.

The head of the Women's Centre for Legal Aid Reda Eldanbouki has reported the engagement to the National Centre for Childhood and Motherhood in the country.

He claimed that the parents should be held accountable for the "crime", adding that their engagement "will only lead to an early marriage in which the girl will be deprived of equal chances to education, growth, and will isolate her from social spheres".

Omar's father however insists: "Omar has always loved Gharam so much that he used to say he will marry her when they grow up before any other man asks for her hand in marriage when she is older.

"They will get married when they reach the legal age."

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