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A woman in western China’s Gansu province attempted suicide after entering an arranged marriage in return for getting her impoverished foster brother a wife, the Lanzhou Morning Post reports.

The woman,

20, said she married a man she barely knew last December in exchange for the marriage of her foster brother to her husband’s sister, the paper reported yesterday.

The woman said she was forced to marry the man who is 10 years her senior by her foster brother, who wanted the marriage deal but was too poor to get a wife otherwise.

The woman was deserted by her parents at birth and brought up by her foster family in the countryside.

She told the newspaper that she had to leave her boyfriend in the city where she had been a migrant worker and return to her hometown to get married.

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The woman attempted to kill herself shortly after the marriage and told the newspaper that the very sight of her husband “made her sick.”

She told the newspaper that she could not get a divorce unless she paid her husband 300,000 yuan. She said she was very depressed and likened her life to “a bottomless abyss. “

Marriage deals in which a brother and sister of one family marry the sister and brother of another are still practised in some less developed areas of China.

Boys traditionally have been preferred to girls in much of China as heir to maintain family lineages. This attitude survives in some areas, and coupled with the nation’s one child policy, created one of the worst gender imbalances in the world.

China had more than 700 million men in 2014 compared with 667. million women, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.