The Age Of Consent denotes the age at which an individual is legally able to give consent to engage in sexual activities.
In order to safeguard minors from sexual abuse and promote their well-being, most countries and states have established a specific age, taking into account various factors within their jurisdictions.
These measures aim to protect minors and encourage them to refrain from engaging in sexual activities until they reach the appropriate age.
Engaging in sexual acts with a minor below the legally established age of consent can lead to legal consequences, regardless of the consent given by both parties involved.
The age of consent varies across jurisdictions, typically ranging from 11 to 21 years.
Some states in the U.S. also implement the ‘Romeo and Juliet law’, legally known as A Close-In-Age Exemption.
This law makes an exception for minors with an age gap of no more than two years who engage in sexual activities. Such minors cannot be prosecuted for rape provided both consented to the acts.
But there are some countries with no age of consent. The countries have either approached the age of consent concept differently or have not explicitly addressed it in their legal frameworks.
The reasons for this variation can be diverse and may include cultural, religious, historical, or social factors that shape the legal landscape of each nation.
In most of these countries, however, people must be married before engaging in any form of sexual act.
Any relations outside marriage are considered illegal and are punishable by the law.
Here is a quick list of countries with no age of consent:
While discussing this topic, we approach it from an informative standpoint, highlighting legal perspectives and shedding light on the complexities surrounding this issue.
By fostering awareness, we aim to encourage meaningful conversations and promote the importance of protecting individuals, especially minors, in matters of sexual relationships.
Despite the absence of a formal age of consent, the laws in Pakistan stipulate that individuals must be married before engaging in sexual intercourse.
However, there is a minimum age requirement for entering into a marital commitment.
According to the state’s regulations, men must be at least 18 years old to marry, while women can marry at 16 years old, although exceptions allow for marriages as young as 14 years old.
There is no close-in-age exemption either, meaning individuals who indulge in sexual acts are held guilty of statutory rape.
Sex before marriage is regarded as illegal in Iran. As a result, there is no age of consent in this region.
Intercourse with a minor, or between two minors whether close in age or not, is punishable under the statutory rape law.
To be eligible for marriage, men should be at least 18 years old, and women 16 years old.
3. Saudi Arabia
Like a majority of Arab countries, Saudi Arabia prohibits sex before marriage and thus has no age of consent.
However, there is a marital age of consent, where an 18-year-old can give consent to whether they want to marry or not.
Those under the age of 18 can only marry under court approval.
In Yemen, there is no legal age of consent both for intercourse and marriage, though sexual relations are only permitted in marriage. The close-in-age exemption is not applicable either.
People are allowed to marry at any age. However, a married girl can only have intercourse after the onset of puberty, which the state officially acknowledges as 9 years.
The lack of a marital age of consent tends to affect girls more than boys, where they are wedded at a very tender age.
The Afghan law prohibits premarital sex, and neither does it recognize the close-in-age exemption.
To be able to freely engage in intercourse without prosecution, individuals are required by the law to be legally married.
The minimum marital age of consent for Afghan men is 18 years, while that of women is 16 years.
Engaging in premarital sex in Kuwait is punishable by up to several years in prison depending on an individual’s age. There is no legal age of consent, but marriage is necessary to be able to have any form of sexual relations.
Though there is no marital age limit, a man must be at least 17 years old and a woman 15 years old to enter into marriage.
There is no age of consent in Qatar. Sexual relations are solely permitted within the institution of marriage.
However, the regulations regarding marriage in this region differ from those in other countries, as there is no specified minimum age for marriage.
The only requirement is the consent of the parents or legal guardians of the individuals involved.
Like other countries in this list, there is no specific age of consent defined by law in Libya.
The practice of premarital sex is prohibited, and individuals are expected to marry before engaging in intimate relationships.
There is no designated age of consent for marriage either. Individuals under the age of 20 can legally marry with the consent of their parents or guardians.
In Oman, marriage is a prerequisite for individuals to engage in sexual acts, resulting in the absence of a defined age of consent.
And like other jurisdictions without age of consent, Oman does not recognize the Romeo and Juliet Law, and all premarital acts are subject to legal penalties.
The minimum age requirement for both men and women to enter into marriage is 18 years.
Sudan is the only country in East Africa without a set age of consent.
Any form of sexual activity outside matrimony is illegal and punishable by the law.
The minimum age for marital consent is 18 years for both men and women.