Arranged-marriage bride, 18, killed herself 'after husband refutes virginity test results'

A man has been charged because driving his wife to suicide over claims he forced her to take repeated virginity tests and then refused to believe the results and demanded a second bride.

Rajabbi Khurshed, 18, took a lethal dose of vinegar 40 days after her arranged marriage to 24-year-old Zafar Pirov, in Tajikistan.
Ms Khurshed's devastated family say Pirov demanded a second bride as he refused to believe she was virgin - despite numerous humiliating virginity tests.

Despite her passing a government-required prenuptial exam - including a virginity test - Pirov admits he took his bride for a further two tests, both of which she passed and both of which he did not believe, before casting her out.

Khurshed's family - who arranged the coupling - told Radio Free Europe their daughter told them on her deathbed that she had felt pressured to accept Pirov's demands for a second wife and 'couldn't take it any longer'.

But Pirov - who faces eight years in jail if found guilty of driving Kurshed to suicide - claimed: "My wife gave me a written statement that she allows me to get a second wife because she wasn't a virgin when we got married."
Kurshed's mother Fazila Mirzoeva said her daughter had been a victim of "slander and violence" and she had never had a boyfriend or had sex with anyone.

She also said she the teen had dropped out of school to help care for her two disabled brothers.

Mrs Mirzoeva, from the village of Chorbogh, has now appealed to the country's president, Emomali Rahmon, for help.

For women virginity tests before marriages are common in Tajikistan, where casual sex is deemed socially unacceptable.

From 2015, the government made it compulsory for both men and women to undergo medical check-ups before a wedding in an apparent bid to stop relatives from marrying.

For women this often included a test of 'purity.'

There have been close to 600 court cases concerning virginity disputes in Tajikistan since 2014.

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