Physically punishing children has become a criminal offence in Wales, in what the Welsh Government has described as a "historic" moment.
As of March 21, it is illegal to use physical force - such as smacking, hitting, slapping and shaking - to punish a child, and anyone who breaks the law could face arrest and prosecution for assault.
The new law will apply to everyone in Wales - parents, or anyone who is responsible for a child while the parents are absent, and visitors.
The First Minister for Wales, Mark Drakeford, described the law change as a "historic achievement" for children and their rights.
Mr Drakeford said: “The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child makes it clear that children have the right to be protected from harm and from being hurt and this includes physical punishment.
"That right is now enshrined in Welsh law. No more grey areas. No more ‘defence of reasonable punishment.’ That is all in the past. There is no place for physical punishment in a modern Wales.”
Scotland became the first UK nation to outlaw physical punishment in November 2020.
Physical punishment of children is already illegal in Welsh schools, children’s homes, foster care homes and childcare settings.
The Welsh Government says the "landmark" legislation will provide children with the same protection from assault as adults.
'Physical punishment is illegal... I can’t tell you how happy that makes me'
The Deputy Minister for Social Services, Julie Morgan, said: "The law is now clear - easier for children, parents, professionals and the public to understand. Physical punishment is illegal in Wales and I can’t tell you how happy that makes me.”
The Welsh Government said physical punishment can mean smacking, hitting, slapping and shaking.
Its website states that it "isn’t possible to give a set list of what makes up physical punishment", because it can be "anything where a child is punished using physical force".
The website also states that anyone who sees a child being physically punished in Wales is urged to contact social services or police in an emergency.
Heledd Fychan MS, Plaid Cymru’s spokesperson for children, said: "The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child places upon us all a duty to support children in their growth and in their development.
"Back in 2020 we, as a nation exercised that right. Now in 2022 we will give them - at last - equal protection against violence under the law.
"Plaid Cymru has long campaigned for such protection, and will continue to advocate laws which protect the rights of children in Wales."
'We should be encouraging and supporting parents, not criminalising them'
The law change has prompted some criticism, including from the Welsh Conservatives who have previously accused the Welsh Government of introducing a "stasi culture".
Darren Millar MS, who was a vocal opponent of the new law before it was passed, said last month: "Demonising mums and dads who use the occasional smack to discipline their children is plain wrong and encouraging people to shop them to their local social services or the police could have dire consequences for families.
“Parenting is hard enough as it is, we should be encouraging and supporting parents, not criminalising them."
The Be Reasonable campaign, which has lobbied against the so-called smacking ban, has argued that punishment which is “immoderate or excessive” was already against the law.
The campaign group's website states: "The reasonable chastisement defence cannot be used in cases where ‘actual bodily harm’ is caused - such as a bruise or more than transitory reddening of the skin. If a parent smacks their child so hard it leaves a significant mark, the parent faces a fine, a community order or up to five years in jail.
"Banning reasonable chastisement would only divert resources away from protecting abused children. The Welsh Government should concentrate on improving awareness of the current law, rather than seeking to abolish it."