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Legal codes in the UAE against Molestation of Women

Legal codes in the UAE against Molestation of Women-3a global legal consultants uae

The United Arab Emirates has strict legislation in place to deal with sexual assault and Molestation of Women in the UAE. The penal code and any subsequent revisions have been codified in Federal Law No. 3 of 1987 (UAE Penal Code).


According to Article 359 bis of the UAE Penal Code, sexual harassment occurs when one person repeatedly annoys another with sexually suggestive comments, gestures, or physical contact in order to fulfill one’s own or another’s sexual wants. In contrast, molestation describes inappropriate conduct, whether verbal or physical, on a public street or in a public area.


A person may be punished with up to one year in prison and/or a fine of up to ten thousand dirhams for indecently molesting a girl in a public road or frequented place (Article 359(1) of the UAE Penal Code). Any male who dresses as a girl in order to get access to a facility or area that is restricted to females faces the same consequences. It is an aggravating circumstance if a crime is committed while in this state.


Inappropriate touching, coercion into a sexual act, or forced exposure to graphic depictions of sexual acts or body parts are all examples of sexual abuse. Consent is always important, and it’s ideal if it’s mutual, voluntary, well-informed, and uncoerced. Age or any other element should not be used to invalidate a person’s ability to give informed consent under current law and regulation.


Federal Decree-Law No. 31 of 2021 was recently updated in the United Arab Emirates to include harsher punishments for sexual assault. Molestation of a male or female that results in the victim’s death is punishable by death under Article 406 of the penal code.


A person who sexually molested a male or female may be subject to imprisonment for a term of not less than 10 years and/or a fine of not less than ten thousand AED, as stated in Article 407 of the new law. If the victim is under the age of eighteen, lacks volition, has a physical incapacity or health condition that renders them incapable of resistance, or if the perpetrator has a specific relationship with the victim, then the perpetrator faces a prison term of ten to twenty-five years. This covers situations where the offender is a family member, guardian, caretaker, employer, or educator, or where the offense was committed in a place of employment, school, shelter, or other institution of care.


Furthermore, if the victim’s death results from the acts listed in Articles 406 or 407, the death sentence may be applied as stated in Article 408.

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