Domestic violence is on the rise with over 42,400 cases reported to the police between 2000 and last year.
Deputy Women, Family and Community Development Minister Datuk Azizah Mohd Dun said the problem was being addressed through various programmes, including making it an offence for anyone to sexually assault his or her spouse under Section 375A of the Penal Code.
Replying to Nurul Izzah Anwar (PKR-Lembah Pantai), Azizah said of the cases reported, nearly 3,600 led to prosecution with over 1,800 cases resulting in convictions.
To a supplementary question, Azizah said a victim should lodge a report to the Welfare Department or the police before action could be taken to protect him or her.
"After a complaint is lodged, the authority will seek to protect the victim by removing him or her from where the offender is staying," she said when replying Datuk Irmohizam Ibrahim (BN-Kuala Selangor).
Irmohizam wanted to know how victims of domestic violence, including emotional abuse involving husbands or wives, could be protected from the abusers.