In a speech on immigration he will give later today, Prime Minister David Cameron will call for the criminalisation of forced marriages.
Those who force others to marry against their will be committing a criminal offence, as will those who breach court orders that are imposed to prevent forced marriages taking place.
Currently, Forced Marriage Protection Orders, which were introduced to England, Wales and Northern Ireland in 2008, can be applied for by a potential victim, friend or police officer in order to protect a person who could be at risk of being forced into marriage.
If someone breaches this order, they will be held in contempt of court and jailed for up to two years. However, this is a civil offence.
Mr Cameron wants to change this to a criminal offence and also to introduce a new offence of forcing someone to marry.
He will say later today: "Forced marriage is little more than slavery.
"To force someone into marriage is completely wrong and I strongly believe this is a problem we should not shy away from addressing."
Last year in the UK, 1,700 cases were dealt with by a specialist team set up to prevent forced marriage. The team believe there were many more cases which were not reported.
Last month, the Home Office ruled against criminalising forced marriage claiming that it was not clear whether legislation was "wholly effective" in protecting victims. Ministers also claimed that forced marriage was hard to prove and the legislation could have a negative effect on victims.
The call for criminalising forced marriage will form part of Mr Cameron's speech about immigration that will also focus on preventing sham marriages and other abuses of family and spousal visas.
He will say: "We need to make sure ... that those who come through this route are genuinely coming for family reasons, that they can speak English, and that they have the resources they need to live here and make a contribution here - not just to scrape by, or worse, to subsist on benefit."
Read more on the story (BBC)
Read 'Marrying for a visa' (FindLaw)
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