Nearly a fifth of the marriages in Saudi Arabia last year ended up in divorce, an average of one divorce case every half an hour, official data showed Monday.
Total marriages in the world’s dominant oil supplier stood at 90,983 in 2010 of which 18,765 ended up in divorce, showed the figures by the marriage court in the western Red Sea port of Jeddah.
“This means that there was one divorce case every half an hour in the Kingdom last year,” said Sheikh Saad Al Gamdi, an adviser at the court.
“It is time for authorities to force any couple seeking marriage to undergo a training course before marriage…this system has been enforced in some countries and it has contributed to a large decline in divorce cases…the high divorce rate in Saudi Arabia illustrates a large gap in the concept of marriage and divorce,” he said, quoted by the Saudi daily Sabq.
Sheikh Gamdi also called for deducting children allowances from the father’s monthly salary in case of a divorce and transferring them to a special account allocated for those children to ease the burden on divorced mothers.