On November 23, 2006, the Senate of Pakistan passed the Protection of Women Bill, which allowed cases of rape to be tried in secular courts, reduced the evidentiary burden necessary for conviction of rape, and instituted a fine and five-year prison term for persons found guilty of having sex outside of marriage. The bill had passed the Pakistani National Assembly the week before, after consideration was originally postponed in the face of opposition from Muslim traditionalists advocating for strict adherence to Sharia law. President Pervez Musharraf signed the bill into law on December 1, 2006. Its adoption was followed by protests around the country.
Pakistan coat of arms
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