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French Government Planning New Law Fighting Sexual Violence

FILE - Two women stand in front of an information stand raising awareness against sexual assault and street harassment during the 81st Bayonne Festival (Fetes de Bayonne) in Bayonne, southwestern France, July 27, 2017.

The French government is unveiling a draft bill that focuses on sexual harassment on French streets and sexual violence against minors.

Speaking on French radio RTL on Monday, Gender Equality Minister Marlene Schiappa said she has been setting up workshops across France with the aim of eventually criminalizing threatening attitudes toward women in French streets. Schiappa also wants to extend the statute of limitations for sexual assaults to 30 years from the current 20 years when minors are involved.

The draft bill is expected to be voted on next year.

A parliamentary group of five lawmakers is studying the new law.

Schiappa said she has the support of President Emmanuel Macron, who has been urging victims of sexual harassment to speak out.