29 Nov 2016

TV show sorry for advising women how to cover up abuse

9:37 am on 29 November 2016

A Moroccan TV channel has apologised after broadcasting a show advising women how to hide signs of domestic violence using make-up.

Channel 2M, which featured the clip last week, has admitted that the footage was "completely inappropriate".

In the broadcast, a woman is seen resting in a chair while make-up is applied to conceal fake bruises around her eyes.

The video was later removed from the channel's website.

In the clip, featured on the show Sabahiyat, the host of the show offers tips on how to make the appearance of bruising "disappear" using foundation and toners.

"We hope these beauty tips will help you carry on with your daily life," the host suggests after demonstrating how to mask the signs of violence.

The controversial video was shared on Twitter and Facebook, receiving widespread condemnation.

Najia Bounaim of Amnesty International tweeted a still image of from the broadcast on Moroccan TV of a make-up artist covering signs of domestic violence.

Twitter user Maroc was critical: "What an absolute joke, 2M as well, the most viewed TV channel in Morocco."

"A real outrage to the cause of women for which we are fighting constantly," wrote Khawla Bélchiti on Facebook.

Another Facebook user, Tracie Wayling, said the decision to air the show was "despicable," adding: "There is no excuse for such a 'mistake' when it is so extraordinarily purposeful."

An online petition, which has received hundreds of signatures since it was posted on Change.org, includes a link to the footage.

The petition calls for action against 2M and Sabahiyat, adding that domestic violence should not be covered up, but that instead it was time to "condemn the aggressor!".

"We denounce the message of normalisation with violence against women. We demand severe sanctions against this show," the petition reads.

In a statement posted on Facebook, the broadcaster offered "sincere apologies" and admitted that the segment was a "misjudgement". It promised to take action against those responsible.

The footage was aired just days before the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, a United Nations initiative aimed at raising public awareness.