Alarabiya reported some recent statistics released by the Ministry of Justice, which highlight an increase in the number of intermarriages between foreigners and Yemenis. The rising rate has left people asking why Yemenis have become more desirable to foreigners.
According to the report, more foreign men marry Yemeni women than foreign women marry Yemeni men.
Those at the Ministry who produced the statistics say a major reason behind this is the cost of dowries.
In Yemen, women typically offer a cheaper alternative to their gulf counterparts. Men from these countries have often come to Yemen to find brides that won’t break their bank balance says Aref Ghaleb, the deputy of the Documentation and Registration Office in the Ministry of Justice.
The ministry’s report reveals 212 Saudi men married Yemeni women in 2012. In contrast, only 5 Yemeni males married Saudi females.
Huda Ba’aqeel, a Yemeni female, who married a Saudi two years ago says she believes her husband chose her over a Saudi bride because of her affordable dowry price.
Bilquis Mohammed Al-Dhamari, a 22-year-old, married an Omani man but ended up divorcing him.
"My family forced me to marry an Omani because he was rich, yet they knew nothing about him," the young woman said.
Ghaleb asserted that the Justice Ministry attempts to ensure all legal proceedings are followed to guarantee the rights of Yemeni females who marry foreigners and live with them abroad.
However, despite the Ministry of Justice’s assurance, a lawyer, Abdulrahman Barman, claims many Yemeni families marry their daughters to foreigners without following the correct procedures due to a lack of legal awareness.
Although the Justice and Interior Ministries oblige both partners to gain the approval of the two ministries and the foreign party’s embassy, many marriages are slipping through the cracks, often to the detriment of Yemeni females.