“I don’t want to marry the man who is 45 years old, the same age as my father,” said Humaira while sitting beside a window in her house and crying (Afghanistan: Child Forced Marriages Still a Common Tradition, IRIN News). In the Middle East, young girls between the ages of 12-17 get married to men that are twenty to thirty years older than them. According to UNICEF, 57% of marriages in the country of Afghanistan involve girls below the age of 16. Young women and girls are forced into marriage for different reasons. Some are forced to marry in order to end a dispute, to earn money, to get rid of an extra mouth to feed, or to pay of a debt by exchanging their daughter. Many of these girls are forced to quit their education to become the wife of a middle-aged man. I believe that forced marriage is the reason why the Middle East is behind the rest of the world powers and has a low Human Development Index. Women education is a big way to reduce the fertility rate, reduce poverty, raise the Gender Equality Measurement, and improve living standards in the Middle East.