- Title: Pakistan parliament passes legislation against 'honour killings'
- Date: 6th October 2016
- Summary: BALOCH WATCHING PROMO OF CRICKET T20 WORLD CUP ON TELEVISION
- Embargoed: 21st October 2016 20:34
- Keywords: Pakistan honour killings parliament
- Location: ISLAMABAD, MULTAN, DERA GHAZI KHAN AND KARACHI, PAKISTAN
- City: ISLAMABAD, MULTAN, DERA GHAZI KHAN AND KARACHI, PAKISTAN
- Country: Pakistan
- Topics: Religion/Belief,Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA00352VD4QV
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: EDIT CONTAINS ORIGINAL 4:3 MATERIAL
Pakistan's parliament unanimously passed legislation against "honour killings" on Thursday (October 6), three months after the murder of an outspoken social media star.
A joint session of the lower and upper houses of parliament, broadcast live on television, approved the new anti-honour killing law, removing a loophole in existing law that allows killers to walk free after being pardoned by family members.
Some 500 women are killed each year in Pakistan at the hands of family members over perceived damage to "honour" that can involve eloping, fraternising with men or any other infraction against conservative values relating to women.
In most cases, the victim is a woman and the killer is a relative who escapes punishment by seeking forgiveness for the crime from family members.
Under the new law, relatives can forgive convicts in the case of a death sentence, but they would still have to face a mandatory life sentence.
An anti-rape law, which makes it mandatory that a perpetrator gets 25 years in jail, was also passed in the same parliamentary session.
Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, whose documentary on honour killings won an Oscar this year, posted on Twitter: "Thank you to PM Nawaz Sharif for keeping his promise."
She said in February she wanted to start a discourse about the honour killings and that the killers should go to jail.
The government of Prime Minister Sharif has faced mounting pressure to pass the law after the brother of social media star Qandeel Baloch was arrested in connection with her strangling death. The brother said he was incensed by her often risqué posts on social media.
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