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30,626 Couples Divorced in 2011

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Riyadh: The Ministry of Justice has disclosed that the number of divorces in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, reached 30,626 in 2011 against 162,880 registered marriage contracts. The figures appeared in a statistical report for the year 2011 recently published by the Ministry of Justice. “Of the total number of divorces, 26,840 were husband-initiated cases accounting for 87.6 percent, while 1,071 cases were “khul”, which is when a wife demands divorce, and 2,715 were annulment cases,” according to the report. The ministry employed 4,615 marriage clerks who recorded an average of 31 registrations in the year the study was conducted. The clerks register marriages only if both the bride and bridegroom are citizens of the Kingdom. With 50,007 marriage contracts, accounting for 30.7 percent of the total marriage contracts signed in the Kingdom, Makkah topped the list of provinces in terms of marriages. Riyadh province came second registering 35,132 marriages, which accounted for 21.6 percent and the least number of marriages was registered in the Northern border province with 744 marriages. The highest number of divorces and annulments was reported in Riyadh with 10,460 cases accounting for 30.2 percent of the total cases in the Kingdom. Makkah came in the second place with 9,996 divorces, while the Northern border witnessed only 319 divorces, according to the report published by the Ministry of Justice. Coincidentally, the highest rate of reconciliations also took place in Riyadh with 496 resolutions out of a total of 2,154 registered cases. The report also indicated that 251,390 cases were pertaining to legal rights, 116,190 were criminal cases, while 121,411 operations were related to registration of legal documents at notary offices.”