Swedish police took three minors, two of them pregnant, into custody after they were found begging on the streets during an international operation against human trafficking.
Three girls aged 12, 14, and 16 were taken into police care, with the 14- and 16-year-olds both found to be pregnant.
According to a report from the Swedish broadcaster SVT, the minors are from unspecified European Union member states. The 16-year-old had come to Sweden with her husband. The 14-year-old was in the country with her parents and was allegedly set to be married. The latter told authorities that her parents had arranged the marriage and her future husband’s parents had paid for the marriage to take place.
Detective Inspector Per Englund of the Swedish Police’s National Operation Department (NOA) said all three minors had been transferred to social services, but their case remains under investigation.
While separating the two pregnant children from their present and future husbands to place them into care may seem normal for northern Europe, it is an act not without controversy. In Denmark, the hardline pro-border control immigration minister Inger Støjberg ordered during the height of the Europe Migrant Crisis in 2016 that migrant child brides be housed separately from their adult husbands.