Forced marriage cases increasing: AFP

Federal police figures show allegations of forced marriage are on the rise in Australia. (AAP)

Federal police figures show allegations of forced marriage are on the rise in Australia.

Allegations of forced marriage have increased more than 600 per cent since it was criminalised in 2013.

Australian Federal Police figures show there were 69 allegations of forced marriage in Australia in 2015/16 - compared to 33 in 2014/15 and 11 in the previous period.

A forced marriage is when someone is married without freely and fully consenting and includes ceremonies involving children too young to legally wed.

Almost a third of the cases (19) referred to federal police in 2015-16 came from Victoria.

The state government said it was looking at ways to better protect women and girls from forced marriages in response to a recommendation from Victoria's family violence royal commission.

"Children should never be put in the position where their parents or community leaders pressure or force them to get married," a government spokesperson said on Monday.

He said changes would be initiated under the Family Violent Protection Act.

Victorian opposition children's spokeswoman Georgie Crozier called forced marriage "abhorrent" and said more should be done to prevent it.

"There is no place for this in our society," she said.

"We need more police resources to investigate any other incidents of this practice and need to look at legislation to prosecute parents who allow this abuse to occur."

Source AAP

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