Tunisia’s parliament on Wednesday passed a bill designed to “end all violence against women”, strengthening protection and help for victims in a move welcomed by rights groups.
“It’s a very moving moment and we are proud in Tunisia to have been able to gather around a historical project,” said women’s minister Naziha Laabidi.
The new law, which is expected to enter into force next year, recognises “physical, moral and sexual” violence, lawmaker Bochra Belhaj Hmida told AFP after the vote.
It will provide for judicial and psychological assistance for victims of domestic violence and removes a controversial article that allows men to escape punishment for rape if they marry their victim.
Tunisia is seen as a pioneer of women’s rights in the Arab world but rights groups say women are still discriminated against, and around half say they have been subject to at least one form of violence in their lives.