S. Korea enacts 'chemical castration' against pedophiles

July 24, 2011 13:00

SEOUL - South Korea has enacted a law allowing the use of 'chemical castration' on convicted pedophiles, the Justice Ministry said on Sunday, becoming the first Asian country to permit the punishment.

The law gives judges the power to order sex offenders who have attacked children under the age of 16 to undergo a medical procedure, widely known as chemical castration, which can last for up to 15 years.

"The law takes effect as of today," a ministry official said on condition of anonymity, adding that dozens of criminals be sentenced to the punishment this year.

The legislation has generated strong protests from human rights bodies.

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