French face jail for psychological abuse of partners | World news | guardian.co.uk: "French MPs have voted unanimously to make "psychological violence" within a couple an offence punishable by up to three years in prison as part of new measures aimed at improving protection for victims of domestic abuse.
Politicians from the left and right supported the passing of a law which singles out "repeated" verbal actions intended to hurt the victim's rights and dignity or their physical or mental health. As well as a jail sentence, offenders could be ordered to pay a fine of up to €75,000 (£66,600).
Supporters of the law claim an estimated 8% of women in France are psychologically abused by their partner. Chantal Brunel, a member of Nicolas Sarkozy's majority Union for a Popular Movement (UMP) party, described it as "a preventive measure as psychological violence always precedes [physical] blows"."
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