The Covid-19 lockdown has uncovered there is a high increase in Saudi Arabia men having 2 or more secret wives and families outside their registered marriages resulting in a 30% increase in divorces as women discover their shenanigans

Divorce rates shot up to a 7,482 record, resulting in a shocking 30 per cent increase in requests for divorces within a period of two weeks into the month of May from women through ‘khula’ – the Islamic process in which a woman can divorce her husband.

Khula is a procedure through which a woman can divorce her husband in Islam by returning the dowry (mahr) or something else that she received from her husband to prove they were harmed by the husband, and as agreed by the spouses or court decree.

This is a huge increase from the previously recorded divorces of such nature.

Gulf News reports that the marriage annulment requests are mainly from employed women, businesswomen, doctors and prominent women in the community who claim to have discovered – through the Covid-19 lockdown – that their husbands had secret wives and families.

Polygamy, the practice of taking more than one wife, is legal in the religion of Islam and its legal status differs between Muslim-majority countries – it has generally been accepted in Saudi Arabia, but the modern change in social dynamics show that women are slowly rejecting the concept. This has resulted in the prevalence of unknown secret marriages from polygamous husbands.

Contrary to popular belief that self-isolation from the Covid-19 crisis would strengthen family relations and increase family bonding, statistics show the pandemic has shown a rising concern about domestic conflicts, abuse and divorce rates across the world.

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