Bride kidnapping is defined as a man abducting the woman he wants to marry and trying to force her into a marital agreement. The definition of kidnapping is the taking a person away from their surroundings by force, lying to them, threatening them, or physically restraining them.
There are some cultures where it is common for a man to kidnap his future wife instead of requesting her hand in marriage. In Kyrgyzstan, which is in Central Asia, it is a common marital practice for a man’s family to kidnap his potential wife before she agrees to the marriage.
In Africa, where kidnapping law is lax, the process usually revolves around the bride being abducted and then raped. In Rwanda, Ethiopia, and Kenya women may be abducted by man with the help of his friends and family. The man then rapes the woman repeatedly as a means of impregnating her. In Rwanda in particular, where bride abduction is not outlawed by kidnapping law, the men who commit the kidnappings are almost never officially tried in court.
For the most part, abducted brides are not taken seriously as victims in court. A kidnapping law may be in place to prevent it but the law is not strictly enforced. Since the kidnapping law is not strictly enforced, most men who kidnap their wives are not punished in any way. While there may be several reasons why a bride is kidnapped for a man instead of requested, a common one is that the man in the union is an undesirable marriage candidate. He may have a history of drug abuse or a criminal background.
In areas where marriage by capture is still relevant, no strong kidnapping law exists to prosecute the men who kidnap their brides. When a woman is abducted for marital purposes, she is subject to extreme sexual and physical abuse at the hands of her captor, who is also her future husband.