Lebanon Moves towards Scrapping Controversial Rape Law

W460

A Lebanese parliamentary committee has forced a vote on scrapping a controversial law that allows rapists to escape punishment by marrying their victims, an NGO said Thursday.

Parliament would need to ratify the decision to change the law, but NGO Abaad said the committee's decision on Wednesday was a key first step.

"We hope that parliament will move quickly to cancel this article and make the other amendments" proposed by the committee, said Alia Awada, advocacy manager for Abaad's campaign to drop Article 522 of the penal code.

The controversial article deals with rape -- including against minors -- assault, kidnapping and forced marriage.

"If a valid marriage contract exists between the perpetrator of one of these crimes... and the abused, the prosecution is suspended," the article reads. "If a verdict has been issued, the implementation is suspended."

A proposal to scrap the article was introduced last year but the committee only approved it Wednesday, along with changes to other sections of the penal code.

The panel proposed raising the penalty for assaults against girls aged under 15 to a maximum of seven years.

Awada said she was hopeful that parliament would vote the changes into law.

"The committee took its time during discussions to reach consensus among all the members from the main political parties to avoid any obstacles to the vote in the parliament later," she told AFP.

There are no precise figures on how many rapists marry their victims to avoid punishment, but Awada said the practice mainly took place in rural areas.

"Many girls come under pressure to marry their rapists under the guise of 'protecting honor' or 'avoiding scandal,'" she said.

In December, the New York-based Human Rights Watch urged Lebanon to repeal Article 522, saying it "allows for a second assault on a rape survivor's rights."

"Protecting honor should be about ensuring that attackers are punished and promoting social attitudes that support survivors of sexual violence instead of stigmatizing them," the rights watchdog said.

Lebanon largely leaves so-called personal status issues to the discretion of religious authorities of the country's 18 recognized sects.

Comments 12
Default-user-icon Rapper (Guest) 16 February 2017, 21:00

Glad that Southern and Mowaten will no longer get away with it. It's about time these people got punished for their shameful behavior.!

Default-user-icon mk42 (Guest) 16 February 2017, 23:47

Yes

Missing ArabDemocrat.com 17 February 2017, 01:22

It is about time.

Thumb scorpyonn 17 February 2017, 04:11

What a primitive law.

Thumb liberty 17 February 2017, 06:25

The law of the heretics

Thumb janoubi 17 February 2017, 08:17

احتجز ولديه تحت الأرض وضربهما ضرباً مبرحاً...الفتاة تعرضت لاعتداء جنسي!

اعلنت المديرية العامة لقوى #الامن_الداخلي انه بتاريخ 2/2/2017، وردت شكوى من النيابة العامة الاستئنافية الى مفرزة النبطية القضائية في وحدة الشرطة القضائية، حول ادعاء المواطنة (إ. ص.) ضد طليقها (ه. ع.، مواليد عام 1978، لبناني) وزوجته (س. ح. ن.، مواليد عام 1992، لبنانية) بجرم تعنيف قاصرَين وشتم وتشهير.

نتيجة التحقيق في المفرزة المذكورة، اعترف طليقها بتعنيف ولديه من المدعية، وبقيامه باحتجاز ابنته (ز. ع.، مواليد عام 2007) لمدة 3 ايام، وابنه (ح. ع.، مواليد عام 2008) الذي كان لا يزال محتجزاً منذ 8 ايام، وذلك داخل حمام في الطابق السفلي لمنزله غير المأهول من قبلهم، وبضربهما ضرباً مبرحاً. كما اعترفت زوجته وعمتها (س. أ. ن. ، مواليد عام 1950،
لبنانية) بالتعرض جسدياً لهما.

http://www.annahar.com/article/540285-احتجز-ولديه-في-حمام-تحت-الارض-وضربهما-ضربا-مبرحا?utm_source=mostread&utm_medium=annahar&utm_campaign=daily

Thumb flamethrower........ 17 February 2017, 09:46

good news indeed, but who are the 'heretics' that our israeli friend liberty keeps mentioning and accusing? i wonder.. i hope it's not being its sectarian self again..

Thumb justice 17 February 2017, 10:11

judging by your comments, I am sure he is referring to you ya heretic.

Thumb flamethrower........ 17 February 2017, 11:19

why so judgemental, mock-justice (: ?

Thumb Southern...... 17 February 2017, 11:17

"Lebanon Moves towards Scrapping Controversial Rape Law" : this is a good news, i hope it would be accomplished soon, despite all trolls who claim to be citizens of this country but their comments prove otherwise. #NotoSectarianism #ZioTrollsOut.

Thumb gigahabib 17 February 2017, 12:18

Lol, it's as if Terrorist is even more active now than before he was banned. Plenty of "new" faces around here...

Thumb Spotter 17 February 2017, 12:29

Giga Alert !!!
One Spotted.... One Affected by the New Law....

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