Putin approves change to law decriminalising domestic violence – Shaun Walker in Moscow Tuesday 7 February 2017 11.18 EST Last modified on Tuesday 7 February 2017 11.42 EST


 Activist Alena Popova during a lone protest against the legal changes. She said passersby told her some women deserved to be beaten. Photograph: Vladimir Gerdo/Tass


Activist Alena Popova during a lone protest against the legal changes. She said passersby told her some women deserved to be beaten. Photograph: Vladimir Gerdo/Tass

Critics say amendment sends wrong message in country where one woman dies every 40 minutes from domestic abuse

Vladimir Putin has signed into law a controversial amendment that decriminalises domestic violence.

The amendment, which sailed through both houses of Russian parliament before Tuesday’s presidential signing, has elicited anger from critics who say that it sends the wrong message in a country where one woman dies every 40 minutes from domestic abuse.

From now on, beatings of spouses or children that result in bruising or bleeding but not broken bones are punishable by 15 days in prison or a fine, if they do not happen more than once a year. Previously, they carried a maximum jail sentence of two years.

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