Former Danish Migration Minister Inger Støjberg has been sentenced to 60 days in prison after being convicted of illegally separating child brides from migrant men in 2016.
The former Minister for Immigration and Integration, who served in the role from 2015 to 2019, was found guilty of violating the Ministerial Responsibility Act on Monday over her brief policy of separating couples — predominantly migrant men with underage wives — during the height of the European migrant crisis.
Støjberg had separated 18 couples in 2016 after deciding migrant girls aged between 14 and 17 would not be accommodated in the same asylum reception facilities as their husbands, most of whom were adults.
According to a report from the Danish broadcaster TV2, the separation of the couples was found to be contrary to Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) and several points of Danish administrative law.
Delingpole: Impeachment! Establishment Punishes Minister for Separating Child Brides from Migrants https://t.co/0AyDfoIGSz
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Støjberg reacted to the verdict saying: “I am very, very surprised, I have to say.”
“It is Danish values that have lost today,” she said.
“There is something very wrong when you cannot protect girls from the disgusting phenomenon of child brides,” she continued, adding: “I will take my punishment, and I do so without shame.”
While the BBC notes that the couples who were separated were “young asylum-seeking couples”, giving an example of a Syrian couple in which the man was aged 26 and his bride 17, Deutsche Welle states that some of the girls involved were as young as 15 and the men as old as 32.
A report from the Times, published in 2016, claims that in at least two cases the girls were as young as 14 and that one of the 14-year-olds had been married to a 28-year-old man.
Following the announcement of the impeachment of Støjberg earlier this year, the former minister left the Liberal Party to become an independent member of the Danish parliament.
In October, she announced a plan in partnership with the populist Danish People’s Party (DF) that proposed to deport as many as 50,000 migrants by 2030.
Child brides have remained an issue among migrants from certain countries, with the most recent examples being seen following the evacuation of Afghanistan after the country fell to the Taliban in August.
United States Secretary of State Tony Blinken confirmed in September that older men with child brides were among those evacuated from the country.
— Senator Ted Cruz (@SenTedCruz) September 14, 2021