Indonesia’s government has introduced a new law expected to pass by mid-December that would ban non-marital sex and even cohabitation of non-married couples, punishable by up to one year of jail time. The law would also apply to visitors.
The same law would ban voicing views that contradict Indonesia’s state ideology or insulting presidents or government institutions. The “unlawful” actions would be punishable by up to three years of jail.
Excerpt from Reuters:
Decades in the making, the new criminal code is expected to be passed on Dec. 15, Indonesia’s deputy justice minister, Edward Omar Sharif Hiariej, told Reuters.
“We’re proud to have a criminal code that’s in line with Indonesian values,” he told Reuters in an interview.
The draft has the support of some Islamic groups in a country where conservatism is on the rise, although opponents argue that it reverses liberal reforms enacted after the 1998 fall of authoritarian leader Suharto.
A previous draft of the code was set to be passed in 2019 but sparked nationwide protests. Tens of thousands of people demonstrated at the time against a raft of laws, especially those seen to regulate morality and free speech, which they said would curtail civil liberties.
Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim-majority nation, has hundreds of regulations at the local level that discriminate against women, religious minorities, and LGBT people.
This certainly sends a message that any others than married heterosexual couples and extremist Muslims should not visit Indonesia, including its famous holiday island of Bali.
A non-married couple would not even be allowed to share a room? Are hotels starting to request marriage certificates before you are allowed to check in?
It never ceases to amaze me that politicians care more about what happens between two consenting adults than resolving real issues affecting the country and the world. This doesn’t only apply to Indonesia.
Indonesia is a Muslim-majority country, although one of the more liberal when it comes to consuming adult beverages and how women dress.
Does the government believe that it should jail tourists for up to a year for having sex while in the country if not married?