CAIRO: An Egyptian cleric and member of the Constituent Assembly tasked with drafting Egypt’s new constitution has said that girls 14-years-old are permitted to have sexual relations under Islam and has proposed reducing the marriage age limit as a result.

“It is permissible for the girl at the age of 9 or 10 to marry,” Yassir Barhami said in discussing a woman’s sexual reproduction and his interpretation of Islam.

The Salafist – ultra-conservative – preacher claimed that under Islam when a girl begins to ovulate she is ready for marriage.

He added during a television debate on Dream TV last Tuesday that “marriage of a girl would not be a supplement for education,” but added that it “was better” to marry a girl young “than falling into sin with customary marriage.”