Ukraine's Verkhovna Rada has introduced criminal responsibility for domestic violence and forced marriage.
Some 241 lawmakers voted in favor of bill No 4952 on introducing changes to several laws in connection with ratification of the Council of Europe's Convention on Preventing Violence Against Women and Domestic Abuse in its second reading and in full.
As indicated in the note accompanying the bill, the legislation implements the statute of the Istanbul Convention, which parliament has not yet ratified.
The adopted law introduces into Ukraine's Criminal Code an article on domestic violence, defining it and punishment for committing it public service from 150 to 240 hours, up to six months' arrest, restriction of liberty for up to five years or a prison sentence of up to two years.
In addition, in Article 151-3 of the Criminal Code deputies reviewed criminal responsibility for forced marriage or extending forced marriage, forced cohabitation, and forced marriage with the aim of traveling to another country. For these offenses criminal responsibility entails arrest for up to six months, restriction of liberty or incarceration for up to three years.
Ukrainian lawmakers also refined the definition in the Criminal Code for articles relating to sexual offenses, saying that committing the offense in the presence of a minor is an aggravating circumstance, as well as with one's current or former spouse.