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Jordan parliament urged to repeal 'marry the rapist' clause

Jordan parliament urged to repeal 'marry the rapist' clause

AMMAN, Jordan (AP) — Dozens of activists have rallied outside Jordan's parliament, calling on legislators to repeal a provision that allows a rapist to escape punishment if he marries his victim.

Parliament is to vote on the proposed change to the penal code on Tuesday.

A royal reform committee has recommended repealing Article 308, but lawmakers have proposed amendments, including exempting from prosecution those who have consensual sex with a minor between the ages of 15 and 17, and then agree to marry the minor.

Human Rights Watch has called for repeal. It says Article 308 is "a blight on Jordan's human rights record."

Tunisia, Morocco and Egypt have scrapped similar clauses over the years.

The provision remains on the books in several countries in the Middle East, Latin America and Asia.