Pakistan on Friday, March 11th 2016 passed a bill that criminalises for the first time sexual assault against minors, child pornography and trafficking. The Regional Working Group (RWG) members along with other civil society organisations in Pakistan played a very key role in advocating for the passage of this law. Effective implementation of this law now remains a huge task ahead, as expressed by the RWG members.
Some of the key highlights include:
- Age of criminal responsibility has been raised from seven to 10 years
- Child pornography, which was previously not mentioned in the law, will be now punishable by seven years in prison and a fine of 700,000 rupees ($7000). So far only the acts of rape and sodomy were punishable by law. It also now provides a comprehensive definition
- Criminalises child trafficking within Pakistan. Previously traffickers were only liable for punishment if they trafficked children out of the country.
Download here for the Bill that was passed as a law.