Iran to Toughen Punishments for Violence Against Women

Mon Apr 10 2023
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TEHRAN: Iran’s parliament has passed proposals to toughen penalties for criminals of violence against women, which would become law within months, state media reported on Monday.

Initiated more than ten years ago, discussions in parliament led to the approval on Sunday of the general principles of a bill called “Preventing harm to women and improving their safety against misbehaviour”, state news outlet IRNA news agency reported.

The bill, which can still be modified, could be formally voted into law in the coming months.

The move comes nearly seven months after the spread of a nationwide protest movement sparked by the death in the police custody of Mahsa Amini on 16 September. The 22-year-old Krdush Iranian woman had been arrested for allegedly violating the country’s strict dress code for female nationals.

In recent years, human rights activists have urged Iranian officials to reform the women’s protection law and toughen domestic violence punishments.

Iran New penalties

According to the text adopted on Sunday, courts could sentence up to fifteen years in jail for murdering his wife if the victim’s family rejects the punishment of qesas – 5 years more than the current maximum penalty.

The publication of pornographic pictures without a woman’s consent and forcing a female to marry against her will would also be considered a crime, the text said.

It also allows the courts to provide married women with a permit to leave Iran even if their husband prevents them from going abroad.

The debate over this issue started in 2015 when the women’s national football team captain’s husband prevented her from participating in the Asian Cup.

In January, Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the final authority in major state policies, called for a tougher law to protect women.

Khamenei said at the time that in Iranian society, women are oppressed in some families; if the law does not provide protection to a woman, a man may abuse her.

He said that the solution is that the family-related laws should be so strong that no man can oppress women. 

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