Madagascar’s parliament has approved a new law which will see paedophiles surgically castrated for their crimes.
The new law comes just days after Kazakhstan announced a similar law where the country’s worst offending child sex offenders will have their genitals surgically removed.
On Friday, February 2, Madagascar’s parliament, The National Assembly, approved a law which legalised the castration of child rapists in the East African country.
The old law stated that those found guilty of raping a minor would face between five and 20 years of forced labour.
However, this new law states that those found guilty of raping a child under ten years old will be surgically castrated and sentenced to life imprisonment. If the victim is between ten and 13 years old, they will instead be chemically castrated and face 15 to 20 years of forced labour. If the rapist is also a minor they will escape castration.
Minister of Justice Landy Randriamanantenasoa spoke in favour of the bill. Le Quotidien, a French language newspaper, reported that Ms Randriamanantenasoa said: ‘Society must know what they did and who they are.’
The bill was proposed by the President of Madagascar, Andry Rajoelina, last month and was one of his key campaign promises during his re-election bid last year.
International organisations have criticised the new law. The BBC reports that in a statement, Tigere Chagutah, Amnesty’s regional director for eastn m and southern Africa, said: ‘In Madagascar, rape cases remain under-reported, and perpetrators often go free due to the victims’ and their families’ fear of retaliation, stigmatisation, and a lack of trust in the judicial system.
‘Implementing chemical and surgical castration, which constitutes cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, as a punishment for those found guilty of raping minors will not solve this and is inconsistent with Malagasy constitutional provisions against torture and other ill-treatment, as well as regional and international human rights standards.’
Ms Randriamanantenasoa has rebuked similar criticism about respect for human rights by saying Madagascar is a sovereign country.