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Malaysia considers insult ban

IT soon could be a crime for Malaysian men to call their wives ugly, a women's rights group and a news report said yesterday.

The governmental Women's Development Department plans to ask Parliament to ban "emotional violence" against women, who currently have legal protection only against physical assault, The Star newspaper reported.

Women's groups told the department that husbands who "demonstrate a pattern of causing mental and psychological damage" should face counseling, fines and jail terms, Ivy Josiah, director of the Women's Aid Organization, told The Associated Press.

Offenders include a husband who "tells his wife she is ugly or humiliates her until she feels emotionally pressured," the government department's head, Noorul Ainur Mohamad Nur, said during a conference on violence against women.


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