Madagascar to castrate rape convicts

Amnesty International says punishment is ‘inhuman and cruel’

By Staff Reporter

Amnesty International has urged authorities in Madagascar to abolish a new law which grants the state powers to castrate persons convicted of rape against minors.

This comes after Malagasy President Andry Rajoelina recently proposed amendments to the penal code – that include chemical and surgical castration as punishment for individuals convicted of rape on minors.

Parliamentarians in that country have already approved the changes.

The global rights lobby feels the law is “cruel, inhuman and degrading”.

In a statement, Tigere Chagutah, Amnesty’s regional director for east 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.”

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