The UK is one of only four countries in the EU that allows physical punishment of children
Parents will be forbidden from smacking their children in Scotland under new legislation being brought forward in Holyrood.
The Scottish government has confirmed it will back a bill put forward by Green MSP John Finnie to provide equal protection from assault for children.
The member of the Scottish parliament for the Highlands and Islands region launched a consultation on a proposed bill to ban smacking in Scotland in May.
He found that almost 75% of those who responded were supportive of the bill's proposal to remove Scottish law's defence of "justifiable assault" of children, which allows parents to smack.
The UK is one of only four countries in the EU that allows physical punishment of children.
The bill had the support of several children's charities and other groups including the NSPCC, Barnardo's, the Children's Commissioner and the Church of Scotland.
A Scottish government spokeswoman said: "Mr Finnie's proposals are not a Scottish government bill, however we will ensure the proposals become law.
"We believe physical punishment can have negative effects on children which can last long after the physical pain has died away.
"We support positive parenting through, for example, funding for family support services."
Mr Finnie said: "It is especially welcome that the Scottish government has reiterated its support for my bill because there is clear evidence that the use of physical punishment is detrimental to children's long-term health and wellbeing."
Lib Dem MSP Alex Cole-Hamilton said: "Scottish Liberal Democrats have regularly demanded the so-called 'justifiable assault' of children be brought to an end.
"It is a source of national shame that this defence still exists and it is welcome that SNP ministers will now get with the times and abolish it."


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