What is Ala Kachuu?
Ala Kachuu is a form of bride kidnapping that is largely non consensual and often involves the violent mistreatment and rape of women. This practice stems from a romantic tradition in Central Asia where the prospective groom 'kidnaps' the prospective bride from her home so that he can marry her.
As is inevitable, most of these marriages end up in domestic violence, repeated rape, forced abortions and eventually broken families. The remnants and the worst affected are of course the women who cannot return to their home. Even when sex does not take place, once a woman has been kept overnight, even for a single night, her virginity is put in doubt in her community.
With her honour disgraced, the woman will have very few other options for marriage. Thus, after one night of capture, she is culturally compelled to marry the man who kidnapped her. Such immense social stigma is attached to a refusal to marry after being kidnap that the victim usually feels that she has no choice but to agree, and some of those who refuse even commit suicide after the kidnapping.
Studies, by researcher Russell Kleinbach, have found that although bride kidnapping is illegal in Kyrgyzstan, an estimated 50% of marriages in the country are the result of Ala Kachuu, and around two-thirds of these are non-consensual kidnappings, with Uighur women most vulnerable to it.
By donating below you will help us to continue and expand our support and outreach programmes in Kyrgyzstan
Monthly Support package > £15
Three options available
1. Help support our helpline for victims of Ala Kachuu who can call in and seek both counselling and legal advice - £5/month
2. Providing support for helpline for AlaKachuu victims, basic counseling for women at crisis centre - £10/month
3. Providing support for helpline for AlaKachuu victims, basic counseling for women at crisis centre, educational outreach programme to areas most affected by non consensual bride kidnapping - £15/month