Research & Article by Azeem Butt
Incest is defined as human sexual activity between family members or close relatives. The legal definition of incest is the crime of sexual relations or marriage taking place between a man and a woman who are so closely linked by blood or affinity that such activity is prohibited by law.
In this article, we will answer the following questions, What are the states where you can marry your siblings? We will speak about how common it is for siblings to get married and why this type of relationship is taboo.
The countries where you can marry your siblings are usually located in the Middle East, and in some regions of North Africa and china. In United States, blood marriages are still prohibited in 31 states, however, this refers to marriage between first-degree up to the four-degree of cousins.
With the exception of small regions, worldwide, it is illegal to marry your siblings.
In Spain, incest is not an act that is considered illegal or punishable in any way. Family members can marry each other as long as they are not members up to a third degree of collateral kinship. For example an aunt or uncle cannot marry their nephews or nieces (third grade)
Incest in the U.S.
In the United States, incest is a statutory crime that is often classified as a felony. Rape and incest are considered to be separate crimes as mutual consent is required for incest and not for rape. When one person is under the age of consent recognized by law, then it is considered to be rape. Additionally, sexual relations between two people of half-blood are often prohibited as well as those related by affinity, such as step-parents or in-laws.
State laws on incest vary. The majority of states have laws that make incest illegal. The punishments associated with engaging in incest vary by state. Rhode Island and New Jersey do not currently have any laws against incest between consenting adults but prohibit marriage for incestuous relationships.
Incest Legality Around the World
The legality of incest varies from country to country. In some countries, incest is punishable by the death penalty, such as in Brunei, Iran, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, the United Arab Emirates, and Sudan (if same-sex relations). In Afghanistan, incest between consenting adults results in the death penalty in Taliban-controlled territories.
In Italy, incest is only illegal if it provokes public scandal. In this case, it can be punishable from two to eight years in jail.
Twenty-two countries around the world have not criminalized incest. In Spain and Russia, consensual incest is fully legal; however, people who are related as siblings, half-siblings, a stepparent and a stepchild may not marry.
Incest is also not strictly prohibited under Portuguese law. Additionally, no laws prohibit consenting relatives from having sexual relations in France, Belgium, and Luxembourg. The people of the Netherlands are allowed to engage in incest as well, but cannot get married.
In Greece, incest is illegal for adults but there is no law prohibiting minors from engaging in incest. In Serbia, Slovenia, and Lithuania, incest is illegal as long as both persons are over 18. In Serbia and Slovenia, incest is illegal if one or both of the person is an underage relative by blood or an underage sibling.
In Israel incest is legal if both persons are over 21 years old. It is illegal if one or both of the persons is an underage relative by blood or adoption. Incest is also legal in Argentina, Brazil, India, the Ivory Coast, Japan, Latvia, South Korea, Thailand, and Turkey
In Portugal, incest is also not punished, but unlike Spain, marriage is prohibited up to the second degree of kinship. For Example, marriage between siblings is not allowed (second degree), but marriage between uncle or aunt with their nephew or niece is allowed (second degree). Other countries such as Russia, Japan, and China, sex between family members is not prohibited, but when it comes to getting married, they do have some kind of restrictions to do it. One of the countries that have particular characteristics is Swede, where half-siblings, marriage is allowed as long as they have a father in common. In addition, they need special permission from the government to formalize it. In the Netherlands, incest is not punished, but marriage is not allowed between adoptive brothers or sisters who have blood ties.
One of the Countries that punish incestuous acts the most is Australia, where carrying out such an act can be punished by 20 years in prison.
Incestuous acts have always been carried out. From ancient civilizations such as the Roman, Egyptian or Greek where it was a practice that did not Scare anyone. The practice of incest began to be punished once Roman law was developed. Practice is punished only for the purpose of protecting the base of society and protecting families. In the case of countries where it is prohibited, the victim is afraid to report that the person would also have committed a crime. However, in countries where incest is not punished, the victim does usually report as she has not committed any illegal activity.