Bill passed to end abuse

MAPUTO - The Mozambican parliament has passed the first reading of the domestic violence bill, which calls for increased penalties for perpetrators of violence against women, reports said yesterday.

MAPUTO - The Mozambican parliament has passed the first reading of the domestic violence bill, which calls for increased penalties for perpetrators of violence against women, reports said yesterday.

Once passed this would become the second bill on the country's statutes that seek to protect vulnerable persons.

This follows child protection legislation approved by parliament last year, the state newspaper Noticias reported.

The bill defines domestic violence as a crime that will be punishable by a prison term with the option of a non-custodial sentence after assessing the family's situation.

It will also empower the police to arrest an abusive husband or male relative to protect the woman without waiting for a formal complaint from the victim. - Sapa

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