Riyadh, Asharq Al-Awsat- A recent study has revealed that 45 percent of Saudi children are abused on a regular basis.
The study which was conducted by the Saudi Interior Ministry’s center for crime control illustrates the wide spread practice of child abuse in Saudi society, with psychological abuse being the most common at 34 percent, followed by physical abuse at 26 percent.
The study indicated that the highest rate of psychological abuse amongst children is experienced by elementary school children, at a rate of 36.4 percent, followed by secondary school children at 36 percent, then preparatory school level at a rate of 30 percent.
The study also revealed that orphaned children are the most exposed to psychological abuse at a rate of 70 percent, followed by children of separated parents, at 58 percent, while children of divorced parents are subjected to physical abuse at a rate of 42 percent.
Dr. Iman al Rawaf, a Psychology lecturer at King Saud University attributes the spread of child abuse in the kingdom to the absence of family supervision over the child, coupled with weak religious morals of the culprit, which increases the rate of this kind of abuse within the family.
Al Rawaf described this type of abuse as silent social crimes, which are usually shrouded in silence out of fear of scandal or social stigma, and with the absence of major efforts to eradicate them from our Arab societies will enable it to continue growing, unresponsive to solutions provided, especially as temporary solutions are ineffective.