Bangladeshi police has launched an all-female unit to tackle a rise in online abuse and harassment targeting women, the country’s police chief said, as authorities seek to address growing public concern about gender-based violence.
The announcement comes as authorities respond to growing concern in the country about an increase in sex crimes, including rape in recent years.
Police hope the unit will encourage more women to come forward to report digital abuse, including so-called revenge porn, hacking of their social media accounts and online threats from blackmailers.
Last month, the government extended the use of the death penalty for rapists following protests sparked by an online video that showed a group of men sexually assaulting a woman.
Nearly 1,350 women were raped in Bangladesh in the first 10 months of this year, according to rights group Ain o Salish Kendra, about 100 more than the number of rapes reported during the same period last year.