LBC, November 2018

Forced Marriage Survivor Describes How She Escaped Parents At 12-Years-Old

LBC, November 2018

Shaheen Hashmat was 12-years-old when she escaped from a forced marriage.

The Scottish Pakistani writer and campaigner described the night she escaped from her parents, who she feared were organising her forced marriage.

Shaheen Hashmat told Maajid Nawaz that she was “allowed to go to school and that was it.”

She then described how at 12-years-old she was sneaking her belongings out “bit by bit” through a back window.

“On the night, I begged my mum to let me see my sisters to get help with my geography homework,” she said.

“That’s when she let me out, and I never went back.”

“So you’re 12-years-old, and you go out on the guise of getting help with your geography homework. And you’ve never been home since?” Maajid asked.

She replied: “Never.”

Anybody seeking help with forced marriages can call the Force Marriage Unit on 0207 008 0151 or 0207 008 1500 (out of hours). More information is available at