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9 Nov 2011

Malacca Chief wants to amend Syariah law to prosecute gay men and lesbians despite existing laws, Pahang to follow

Malacca Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Ali Rustam wants to amend Syariah laws to deal with gay men and lesbians although Malacca's Syariah laws already criminalise "intentional anal sex", "attempted intentional anal sex" and “sexual relations... against the order of nature”.

Update (Nov 10, 2011): Pahang State mufti Datuk Abdul Rahman Osman says his state will follow Malacca's move to amend its Syariah laws as the present provisions are insufficient in tackling deviant sexual behaviour and a specific legal provision was needed to spell out the crimes, the form of enforcement and punishment, the Star reported today.

The Malaysian state of Malacca may soon seek to prosecute gays and lesbians by applying the same type of Syariah legal mechanism used against deviant Muslim sects, reported the local Star newspaper on Wednesday. This follows the ban of the Seksualiti Merdeka festival, which was scheduled to begin today and run until Nov 13 in Kuala Lumpur.

Chief Minister of Malacca Datuk Seri Mohd Ali Rustam

Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Ali Rustam was quoted as saying that gay men and lesbians could be tried at the Syariah Court once the enactment was gazetted as Syariah law.

“We will revise the current enactment to specifically deal with homosexuals and lesbians in the state, including groups that promote such uncanny sex,” he said on Tuesday.

The report quoted Mohd Ali, who is also Malacca Islamic Religious Department chairman, as saying that the enactment had to be revised to include bisexuals and transsexuals as there was no specific law at present to prosecute such groups.

He added that action could also be taken against any non-governmental organisation promoting and supporting such sexual practices. Since the Malaysian police demanded the cancellation of Seksualiti Merdeka last week, a number of groups including The Malaysian Bar, Sisters in Islam and the Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism (MCCBCHST) have voiced their support for LGBT Malaysians and the festival to be allowed to go on.

“We don't want such unsavoury culture creeping in and damaging the moral fabric of our society,” Mohd Ali said.

No details of the specific amendments were made available but Malacca's Syariah laws already criminalise "intentional anal sex", "attempted intentional anal sex" and “sexual relations between any man, woman or animal which is against the order of nature”.

When contacted by Fridae, Nizam Bashir, a solicitor and Syariah Practitioner who is formerly based in Malacca but now in Kuala Lumpur, said: “I don't know what our Malacca CM is talking about when he says there is no statutory mechanism in place to deal with homosexuals. 

“Even at present, there is section 56 which criminalises "intentional anal sex" and section 57 which criminalises "attempted intentional anal sex". The punishment is a RM5,000 (US$1,600) fine and maximum three years imprisonment. Section 58 which criminalises sexual relations with any man, woman or animal which is against the order of nature. The punishment is a RM5,000 fine, maximum three years imprisonment and also provides for six strokes of the rotan.” 

While the new proposed provisions will only impact Muslims, Section 377A of Malaysia’s Penal Code which criminalises “carnal intercourse against the order of nature” – or oral and anal sex – already prescribes up to 20 years imprisonment and whipping.


Reader's Comments

1. 2011-11-09 20:37  
Ss.56, 57, and 58 - Not enough? If the Negeri Seremban Constitutional Challenge case were to declare ultra vires to Federal Constitution, Ali Rustam would have no words!
2. 2011-11-09 21:04  
there goes islam... religion of "peace"... prosecuting innocence...
3. 2011-11-09 21:44  
"uncanny sex"?? What's that then?...as in "gee, that sex was just...uncanny...I must rush out and promote it!".
4. 2011-11-09 21:51  
They may have the religious police, but we have the fashion police and that outfit should be illegal.
5. 2011-11-09 21:58  
what's next, shooting of gays....or trapping and put them up for tortures like the stray dogs in Malaysia....Sad...really sad..
6. 2011-11-09 22:00  
just wandering what would he do if his own son or daughter is gay....omg
7. 2011-11-09 22:02  
back to Zaman Jahiliah, haha... pity the Muslim gays... forcing them to commit suicide or living with the one for life who he doesn't actually love or has any interest?
Comment edited on 2011-11-09 22:07:33
8. 2011-11-09 22:21  
Oh wow, this is the same man that says God made animals for lab testing, according to this article...


According to studies, whatever anyone says is God's opinion, is always just their own opinion. Now that's truly "uncanny". Sex? Not uncanny.
9. 2011-11-09 22:44  
Omg! Quick run for yr lives our dear malaysian gay brothers & sisters! 1st the Portuguese, then the Dutch, then Brits.... Now the terrorising Ottomons are going to persecute you for being yourselves! Poor Malacca... To think It crossed my mind to visit over the yearend holidays....ooops sorry now. With this law impending, they could start ambushing gay people.... Be it any race or religion. Tragic country!
10. 2011-11-09 22:50  
This guy's idea of morality includes supporting child marriages:


...and according to this article he was disciplined by UMNO for "money politics"


...Some may question his moral compass, but I couldn't possibly comment.
11. 2011-11-09 23:09  
Screw him
12. 2011-11-10 00:06  
@11, no thanks, not even if you paid me.
13. 2011-11-10 00:16  
he can go n screw the pigs!
14. 2011-11-10 00:38  
Even NGOs will not be left off the hook, this moustache douche is just full of hate~
15. 2011-11-10 00:51  
Well these government bodies often come up with their own laws to satisfy the main social creed.

We gays are partly at fault for all the new laws that come to place. If we had been discreet and maintain a private lifestyle, and do not interrupt with the main social norm, we probably would have been ignored and our activities will not be curtailed as in whats happening now not only in Malaysia but in Shanghai, Indonesia or any other Asian countries.

The problem with us is that some of us want social recognition and to do that, we make our presence felt, by publicising through advertisements, posters, gay rights activities, open parties etc. Indirectly, we are actually backstabbing our ownselves. Cause the main society will even try to impose more restrictions on our activities.
Comment #16 was deleted by its author on 2011-11-10 01:15
17. 2011-11-10 01:14  
@15, good to see you back from your COOS sessions. Still gay then?
18. 2011-11-10 01:50  
Bad news.Sickening indeed.
19. 2011-11-10 01:53  
COOS sessions? I don't follow...sorry.
20. 2011-11-10 01:53  
COOS sessions? I don't follow...sorry.
21. 2011-11-10 01:54  
Shouldn't this guy be prosecuted for HATE crimes?
22. 2011-11-10 02:16  
Re 15: What kind of stupidity blames the victims who, in this case want the simple and harmless freedoms to love and enjoy their bodies? #15 is too scared to even utter a word of condemnation towards the cruel and arrogant oppressors! It's Stockholm syndrome #15 - you need help... and then courage. You can't be serious that after 1,000s of years of oppression at the hands of controlling religious bigots with no human decency, that gay people, who like the slaves and women and other oppressed groups of the past, are slowly coming to realise their essential equality with all people, should run into the closet and hide in the shame that the religious folk gave us in the first place. What if we are not ashamed? (Though I guess i would sign a statement of shame rather than get 100 lashes.)
Comment edited on 2011-11-10 02:18:41
23. 2011-11-10 02:20  
I am always somewhat amazed,,,,,,,,,,,that in many counties and locations, issues like this get raised to such importantance. I guess the Minister does not have much work to do? Economy? Crime? Education? Health care? new jobs for the people?

Well, maybe he is looking to go toward the Nazi's actions under Hitler for gays/LBT? Put pink stars on all of them, on their clothes for all to see, and then send them to prison camps and then next and last, just kill all the gays/lesbians/trans. That is the end point of this type of policy..............."Those who do not know history are bound to repeat it" - Aristotle ?
24. 2011-11-10 02:55  
Pls pray for him to burn in Hell ! ,everyone in this world should have equal right,this banning will cost confusion ,and depression to the people who are gays/lesbians/trans .
25. 2011-11-10 04:19  
Malacca is a beautiful city, so it's a shame to see such ugliness coming out of it.

I really cannot fathom why some people get so worked up by the private consensual love of others....... not getting enough at home himself?
26. 2011-11-10 05:16  
Poor poor country... quite shocking... sad...
27. 2011-11-10 05:18  
people who talk highly about moral standards use these morals only as legislation to suppress others....
28. 2011-11-10 08:42  
Make love not war - i say give him a good screw and turn him towards our side ;)
Comment #29 was deleted by its author on 2011-11-10 10:29
Comment #30 was deleted by its author on 2011-11-10 10:29
Comment #31 was deleted by its author on 2011-11-10 10:29
32. 2011-11-10 10:40  
MichaelAsia. Ali Rustam knows his history all too well. In fact that's all he does know. Everything Muslims do and think is based on what Mohd had to say. They conveniently overlook that the world isn't frozen in time at the 6th century. Of course they must disregard any evidence that Mohd n his fantasy god got it wrong ...often. To acknowledge one fault in Islam is to open the flood gates of analytical criticism. That is why it's necessary to destroy the thinking abilities of young Muslims in the process of enforced islamification. What Hitler did to a few million Jews is a minor event compared to what Islam has done to billions of its followers
33. 2011-11-10 10:47  
It's Malaysia, truly Asia!
34. 2011-11-10 11:04  
Once again the face of the uggly pig is showed! The face of intollerance and hatery!
Malaysia claims it self to be a civilized country, a equal country and a DEMOCRATIC country! HELL NO NO NO!!
35. 2011-11-10 11:33    
Hi everyone, please refrain from personal attacks, insults and comments that are inflammatory towards any nationality, ethnicity, gender, religion or other personal discrimination. Fridae reserves the right to remove responses that do not conform to the basic guidelines.
36. 2011-11-10 12:18  
It is sad to learn that the city of Malacca is going in this direction. I have always thought that Islam is a peaceful religion. It teaches love , compassion and also forgiveness, but i also tend to see an increasing number of fanatics who have interpreted the religion towards their own beliefs , perceptions and agenda. This has to stop at all cost.

I also tend to agree with # 15 in someway of another. If we want to be accepted by the mainstream population , we need to get our acts right. Have you ever wonder why we are call queer ? Maybe because we behave just like one. Have you ever stop and wonder how do we portray ourselves in public ???? Think carefully and hard ...most of the time we tend to portray ourselves in a very promiscuous manner. Bare bodies , sweaty hot bods , tight and figure hugging see through Ts and the list goes on....

Is there no other way to portray PLU ? Can't we just be that guy next door in a suit ? in uniform ? like anyone else ? and still be GAYs ???

Why must we always be stereotype in our "branding". I believe we need to do some soul searching and then together voice it out ! Then I am sure people will take us more seriously ! Just my two cents !! I hope I do not ruffle any feathers or sequins here. It's not my intention to provoke anyone out here.
37. 2011-11-10 12:54  
He speaks of his own prejudice and judgement of his interpretation of Islam....he does not speak for the whole. Instigating fear, which is the most common method for the fearful to protect themselves and their world from anyone who is different. Self-righteousness and refusal to understand what makes Malaysia, Malaysia will only further segregate the nation. If you don't even want to understand the people, then you should stop proclaiming this 1Malaysia bullshit. That's my stand.
38. 2011-11-10 13:24  
Perhaps he tried to date Anwar and got rejected?
39. 2011-11-10 13:44  
What a moronic. How unmoral is "sexual relations between any man, woman or animal which is against the order of nature" compare to incest rape. What bloody is he talking abt. If we're sin aren't the almighty is even more sinner because we're created by "HIM". How virtue a person can be. We human can never to the right thing & be a good person, we can only try our best to be the good person.

Did god say we're the Bastard child. Who are all these monkey playing God. Why aways fuck us up with religion.
40. 2011-11-10 14:32  
And one day before this article came out, I was updating my blog about a movie titled 'Bent' - about the annihilation of homosexuals in the Nazi concentration camps in Germany. Lets hope history is not repeating itself in another country.


41. 2011-11-10 15:39  
@blackpython (post #2). Yes this is what happens when the nutters take over a religion and the moderates do nothing about them. We are now at the stage where the nutters have taken over and they will use their religion to spread their agenda of hate. So much for religions of any nature - they are all based on hate when you peel of the layers of piousness.
42. 2011-11-10 15:49  
He got nothing to do and too free. There are much more important issues out there waiting for him to settle. Most of the politician in Malaysia like to make hooha to gain the popularity.. Too sad.
He is the one!!!

Go back your office and settle those more issue which is benificial to the people.

43. 2011-11-10 18:01  
Interesting development in Malaysia.

First, I support Pang's SM Festival. In Malaysia, you need to make drastic moves like Bersih in order to push for change. Only drastic moves such as Bersih can force the incompetent government to reveal its weaknesses, admit its mistakes and implement overdue remedies.

There is no need to worry about Malacca & Pahang enacting OVERLAPPING anti-gay laws. As Malaysian solicitor and Syariah Practitioner said when contacted by Fridae: “I don't know what our Malacca CM is talking about when he says there is no statutory mechanism in place to deal with homosexuals." There are already anti-gay laws. So what's the big deal with enacting overlapping ones? The fundamentalists were merely trying to act tough in response to Pang's potency.

While I support Pang's SM Festival, there are a few things I want to comment on & suggest:
1) Don't act too tough. Play the sympathy card.

2) Demonstrate that LGBT are not there to "convert" straight people, rock the boat or threaten religions.

3) If possible, adopt both soft and hard tactics. Learn from Singapore's Pinkdot & Pink Picnic organisers. They created "apparently non-threatening" events like picnics in parks with family & frens, which effectively threw the ball to the fundamentalists' and government's court. If the latter wanted to prosecute them for just having picnics, it'd seem too tough and unreasonable: Didn't gay people have even the space to hold picnics with family and friends? It'd then be easy for the organisers to play the sympathy card if the government overreacted.

4) Expand the scope from "Sexuality" to concepts (e.g. love, tolerance and community coherence) that the majority value. For example, include LGBT's Family, Friends, Religious mentors, School teachers and Colleagues. In order to include these groups, your theme may have to be adjusted. Perhaps you should consult Roy Tan, the organiser of Pinkdot. Think of events and a theme that include all these groups.

5) Instead of "rights", emphasize on "tolerance". It'd be a mistake to copy the Western approach of emphasizing on individual rights when Asian societies generally value social harmony more than individual rights. This is our Asian culture, so your approach should take this into account.

6) As this battle continues, and the media focus their attention on LGBT, please use this opportunity to raise awareness. I mean invite leading psychiatrists and psychologists (e.g. those licensed by American Psychological Association) to explain what sexual orientation is, why it's silly to think of homosexuality as a lifestyle that one can choose, etc. Of course, such authoritative assertions would make those politicians who make unscientific claims about us sound stupid. That should shut some of them up.

7) Be prepared for hostility. I am afraid that you're risking your personal freedom and even safety in this battle. You may be charged by the police/Muslim courts. I salute you for daring to take up this challenge. And, please watch out for your own safety. Certain extremists may resort to violence and blackmails. If possible, always be accompanied by friends and keep one another informed of wherever you go. Watch out for one another's safety. I am sure you heard about the gay professor being murdered in India after his sexual orientation was publicized and he was sacked. So, be very careful.
Comment edited on 2011-11-10 18:04:29
Comment #44 was deleted by its author on 2011-11-15 08:17
45. 2011-11-10 19:47  
Largely agree on #43 comments and especially comment #5 ...the Asian approach.

I suspect there is a link between what happened here and the " in your face rainbow flagged" and banned sexuality Malaysia event .

And the emotional rant noise does nothing to help.

Now everyone suffers .

Very sad

Comment edited on 2011-11-10 19:50:49
Comment #46 was deleted by its author on 2011-11-10 21:54
47. 2011-11-10 21:51  
Guess what, Pahang Minister will also be following what Ali Rustam has proposed. What's next, it's really freaking me out. Is it that bad to just want to love another and to understand each other. Is it so hard to understand the fundamental of life? It's so strange that he feel threaten by what SM is doing. They were merely creating awareness where LGBT people have a place to go to and be comfortable with themselves.

Do you think people just turn gay so that they could be oppress, ridicule, embarrass and throw into jails? Do you think we want this kind of life. Even then, they will still be gay, it's all over in the natural world. It's a scientific fact, the only way is asking straight people to stop having gay babies....are we going to test every child now and label them gay and non-gay. Doesn't he know that nature's phenomena has always been something not all human will understand. There is something as hermaphrodite for christ sake! Unless of course, they believe in their own world, create by themselves for themselves and like Hitler anything that's doesn't fit must be BAD. Sexually comes in a bell shape histogram and not a binomial trait....well of course it's too profound for him to understand anyway...if he's doing it for politics, then it's way wrong to even touch this issue, when there are so many other things that need to be improve in Malacca and Malaysia. I'm just afraid, really afraid that it might turn into Uganda and then.....
48. 2011-11-10 21:55  
49. 2011-11-11 01:10  
The more he said about how much he anti this community ..... The nearer he is going to face the fact of losing his chief position one day in the next Election ...... Hooray! - (Simon not Leeb)
Comment edited on 2011-11-18 12:10:51
50. 2011-11-11 01:20  
"Syariah laws already criminalise "intentional anal sex"".
Makes me wonder the definition or use of unintentional anal sex.
51. 2011-11-11 01:34  
Please do away with his false smile. Cant stand it any longer to look at him everytime I log in to fridae. Any more news?
52. 2011-11-11 01:42  
How about a corporate and personal boycott of e.g. Air Malaysia worldwide? And withdrawal of financial aid by the developed countries?
53. 2011-11-11 02:58  
Mica #15 is indeed right in some cases because of the "in-your-face" attitude of some members of the community who want to impose themselves on str8s as well as some str8s on gays. Best thing to do is have a calm discussion. Queer Nation was an aberration. I am glad it's gone. We can be our own worst enemy, firing our guns in a house with a gas leak.
54. 2011-11-11 03:37  
I'm a muslim but the whole 'islamic law' that punishes gays is all made up. I think it's more of a cultural thing than it is a religious thing. I mean, the quran never mentioned anything about prescribing punishment for homosexuals... sure they mentioned about the whole sodom and gomorrah (S&G) being punished by god, but it's not just because of homosexuality. It's to do with other things too like rape, paedophilia and violence etc. It's a crazy town afterall. And plus, that's god's punishment. Not unless the law-makers think they're god, they shouldn't be making laws up and claim it to be 'islamic'. It's not at all.

Plus, prophet muhd (pbuh) may have mentioned bad stuff about gays but i think he actually said he just hoped his people don't become like people of S&G. Which I think he meant he wouldn't want his people to turn into people who rape go violent and inhospitable etc. Besides, Prophet Muhd (pbuh) never once actually punish someone for being gay. No evidence of it at all!

So really, they should stop making up all these 'laws' and call them 'islamic' because... it's not. Just my thought :3 *peace!*
55. 2011-11-11 03:47  
Sad and appalling. and it just gives the west one more stick to beat Islam with.
I wonder when someone will challenge the “sexual relations... against the order of nature” assertion. There are over 100 documentated instances of animals/birds engaing in homosexual affairs, so in truth being gay is actually in line with the order of nature. Someone should try that as a legal defence.
56. 2011-11-11 06:46  
This has more to do with politics and coming general election. He needs support and attention in order to stay in power.
57. 2011-11-11 06:59  
Some posters actually have had the gall to justify the irrationality of the Malacca authorities by blaming so-called "in your face attitudes by gay people"...hello??? Wot the heck are you talking about? Btw I have my doubts if those posters are actually gay in the first place, given their appalling lack of empathy & offensively-smug demeanor toward the plight of fellow gays in Malaysia- dead giveaway.

Now, don't get me wrong. Personally the likes of Gay Pride/Parade are NOT my cup of tea. And I do not condone PDA in public,either, homo AND hetero. But do I want a religious law to control their movements simply because they irritate me? NO. That's what the NAZIS would do. In the same vein, overtly religious people, not just muslim but christian, buddhists, hindus,etc, irritate the crap out of me by their often double-faced hypocrisy,too..just look at the numerous popes, imams, rabbis, monks and other 'Holy Men" caught in pedophile/rape/molestation sprees...do I, then, issue a blanket ban on religion and declare 'anyone caught praying at a place of worship shall be thrown in jail"?! Again, NO. That's what the COMMUNISTS would do. And are still doing today, if I ain't mistaken.
At the end of the day, it just boils down to Ethics 101, pure & simple. We leave people alone, as long as they do not pose a significant security threat, terrorism or malicious intent to harm another human being ...and no, people who get addicted to sex, porn and/or drugs have a problem with THEMSELVES, not society. They should be referred therapy, quarantined from the vulnerable. The public should not be made to bear the cross of their stupidity.
58. 2011-11-11 10:56  
What is wrong if their citizen don't like garlic but prefer onion? The govt needs to update the world not just having a meal in the toilet!
59. 2011-11-11 11:08  
to be fair and balanced. Some of the Christian groups are just as bad as this "Malacca policy" and just as prejudiced. So the world still has problems with the "gay/LBT" issue all over. Keep struggling for freedom and LOVE!
60. 2011-11-11 11:08  
to be fair and balanced. Some of the Christian groups are just as bad as this "Malacca policy" and just as prejudiced. So the world still has problems with the "gay/LBT" issue all over. Keep struggling for freedom and LOVE!
61. 2011-11-11 11:08  
to be fair and balanced. Some of the Christian groups are just as bad as this "Malacca policy" and just as prejudiced. So the world still has problems with the "gay/LBT" issue all over. Keep struggling for freedom and LOVE!
62. 2011-11-11 12:03  
asshole,pushing his outdated and uninformed beliefs on others. SHAME ON YOU!
63. 2011-11-11 12:04  
What about paedophiles? One ex Malaccan CM raped an underaged girl - why isn't there a change in laws to persecute these kind of cases?
64. 2011-11-11 12:07  
43 and 45 think again sweethearts. The Asian concept of Social Harmony is just a fancy name for keeping you repressed. It means you arenT allowed to have an opinion of your own and if you slipped through the 'repression net' and started thinking for yourself, then you certainly aren't allowed to voice your opinion. In short individuality is banned, all you are here for is to work your butt off to make someone else filthy rich. The gay movement is about basic human rights and they are the same if you are east, west or somewhere else
65. 2011-11-11 13:16  
For those who are turning their guns (no pun intended) back at their gay community, perhaps some food for thought here:

Gay right = human right = god-given (if you believe in one) birth right = something that should be given to you in the first place without you having to fight (unless my defintion of "right" is wrong)

The fact that gays do not have equal status as straights after thousands of years means that the powers-that-be will continue NOT to give it to you. Two options: continue with the mainstream flow "peacefully"and hope this right will be given to you in perhaps 2 thousand years' time, or continue fighting to bring change earlier.

We should be able to recognise from momentous developments all over the world that a fundamental change always comes with a struggle (= fight). This is human history.

Gay right cuts so deeply into so many fundamental social fabrics of the straights system that I wonder if any change can ever happen without sustained pounding.

Perhaps we could agree that a continuous fight is necessary, and disagree on the intensity that each gay community can reasonably exert to push its own boundary?

But a fight it must be!
66. 2011-11-11 13:16  
Sexuality is all life & soul of all nature. It matters not whether we are gay, straight, bisexual or transgendered. There is no moralistic policy.
67. 2011-11-11 13:59  
That guy.. Aww!... LOL. but glad was born non-muslim.
68. 2011-11-11 16:02  

Alert - Malaysia
10 November 2011
Government urged to ensure rights of all citizens to freedom of association, expression
SOURCE: Human Rights Watch

(Human Rights Watch/IFEX) - New York, November 9, 2011 - The Malaysian government should immediately rescind a police-imposed ban on the fourth annual Seksualiti Merdeka festival and adopt measures to protect all Malaysians from discrimination, Human Rights Watch said today in a letter to Prime Minister Najib Razak. The "sexual diversity" festival, which has been held since 2008 without incident or interference from government authorities, was scheduled to take place in Kuala Lumpur from November 9 to 13, 2011.

The festival was to consist of talks, workshops, literary events, stage performances, and an art exhibition focusing on "the human rights of people of diverse sexual orientations and gender identities." The police announced on November 3 that it constituted a "threat to public order." The authorities failed to provide any evidence to justify that determination, Human Rights Watch said.

"Banning the Seksualiti Merdeka Festival blatantly contradicts Prime Minister Najib's'1Malaysia' call to promote 'unity in diversity' in Malaysia and sadly indicates that a discriminatory, homophobic agenda persists within some quarters of the government," said Boris Dittrich, advocacy director of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights program at Human Rights Watch. "The prime minister should promptly reverse this wholly unjustified decision and minimize the harm to Malaysia's reputation."

Seksualiti Merdeka organizers say that they have been subjected to a renewed barrage of harassment and threats of violence by people using mobile phones/SMS and social media since the police announced the ban. The government should fully investigate these threats and prosecute those responsible to the fullest extent of the law, Human Rights Watch said.

Malaysia's criminal law encourages discrimination against Malaysia's LGBT population and has been used to prosecute sexual acts between consenting adults. The government refuses to consider repeal of article 377B of the penal code, which criminalizes consensual "carnal intercourse against the order of nature," or to replace article 377C on non-consensual sexual acts with a modern, gender-neutral law on rape.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights affirms that all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights and that everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in the declaration, without distinction of any kind, including the rights to freedom of expression and association. The Malaysian government's unjustified banning of the festival violates the principle of non-discrimination and freedom of expression and association, Human Rights Watch said.

Malaysia is member of the United Nations Human Rights Council. When it sought election to the council in 2010, the Malaysian government made a commitment to "uphold the highest standards" of human rights and to "fully cooperate" with the council. Banning the festival contradicts the council's June 2011 resolution on "Human Rights, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity," which expresses "grave concern at acts of violence and discrimination, in all regions of the world, committed against individuals because of their sexual orientation and gender identity." Unless the ban is reversed, other countries are likely to raise the issue with the council, Human Rights Watch said.

"On Human Rights Day last year, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called upon all countries to decriminalize same-sex sexual relations between consenting adults," Dittrich said. "Malaysia is long overdue in responding to that and other calls by the international community to end its discriminatory behavior, and the government should repeal its 'unnatural offenses' laws immediately."

For more information:
Human Rights Watch
350 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10118
hrwnyc (@) hrw.org
Phone: +1 212 290 4700
Fax: +1 212 736 1300
69. 2011-11-11 20:21  
Dear commenters, please stop country-bashing. The views of 1 person does not equate to that of the gay and lesbian people of Malaysia. Like #54 said, there's a difference between culture, politics and religion; the restrictive views of one 'Muslim' person does not mean that Islam is inherently an oppressive religion. Politicians use all tools at their disposal. Hate the oppressor if you want - but it's not Islam or the people of Malaysia who are at fault.
70. 2011-11-11 23:18  
How about a Lady GaGa Flash Mob outside his house, then post on you tube?
Comment #71 was deleted by its author on 2011-11-11 23:56
Comment #72 was deleted by an administrator on 2011-11-12 12:03
73. 2011-11-12 02:20  
religion is not normal the religious shit comes from s book of hate ,gay is absolutely natural and normal, gay love comes from the heart,Islam is really coming out of my ass
74. 2011-11-12 04:44  
there should be a like button here too..
or love i should say, orh.. does that mean he is asking us not to step in malacca??
75. 2011-11-12 08:53  
He's probably just another closet case who can't face the reality of his sexuality so he hides behind his religious beliefs.
76. 2011-11-12 11:44  
Dear Philosophia, (#69)

"Politicians use all tools at their disposal. Hate the oppressor if you want - but it's not Islam or the people of Malaysia who are at fault."

When apathy reigns, when a little comfort is more important than liberty, when thousands of people don't bother to vote thinking their vote won't change anything, when Malaysia is mentioned in the international press always for the wrong reasons, when religious tensions are fuelled for political reasons, when you let History to be distorted, when you let the Koran to be equally distorted,when ten times a lie becomes truth...
...'there's something rotten in the state of Denmark' ("Hamlet." Act I, Scene 4: Marcellus).
If you believe that a government is 'of the people, by the people, for the people, then, my dear Philosophia, get your butt into action and vote accordingly in the forthcoming elections even if you think they are neither clean nor fair.
Until then, you have the government you deserve...and you will be at fault !
Comment #77 was deleted by an administrator on 2011-11-12 12:50
78. 2011-11-12 13:31  
"The irony of the situation is that the overwhelming majority of gay people in this country are Malays," said James Chin, a political analyst at Monash University in Malaysia. "When they have these laws to target non-mainstream sexual minorities, they are actually targeting their own people."

Malaysia states eye harsher laws for Muslim gays

By Liau Y-Sing

KUALA LUMPUR | Fri Nov 11, 2011 6:13am EST

(Reuters) - Two Malaysian states are set to change their Islamic laws to punish Muslims who engage in homosexuality, raising the prospect of gay Muslims being punished twice and stoking concerns about rising intolerance towards same-gender relationships.

Homosexuality is punishable by law in Malaysia by caning and up to 20 years in jail, but the legal amendments planned by Pahang and Malacca religious authorities would give the state governments additional ammunition.

If the proposed changes came into force, a Muslim homosexual could be punished under both federal and state religious charges, meaning that jail terms could run consecutively and result in longer time.

Analysts said the proposed amendments hinted at an increasing intolerance towards homosexuality and could erode support for the government among the majority ethnic Malays, who are Muslims by birth.

"The irony of the situation is that the overwhelming majority of gay people in this country are Malays," said James Chin, a political analyst at Monash University in Malaysia. "When they have these laws to target non-mainstream sexual minorities, they are actually targeting their own people."

Malacca's chief minister, Mohd Ali Rustam, said the state would review its Islamic law provisions to allow Muslim gays and lesbians to be tried in court and punished by a jail term or a fine to deter homosexuality.

"So many people like to promote human rights, even up to the point they want to allow lesbian activities and homosexuality," Ali told Reuters.

"In Islam, we cannot do all this. It is against Islamic law," he said, adding that Muslim homosexuals would also be required to attend counselling.

Ali, who is also Malacca Islamic Religious Department chairman, said the proposed penalties would also apply to those who supported homosexuality even if they did not practise it.

"We want to put it in the enactment so that we can enforce it and bring them to our sharia (Islamic law) court. Then we can charge them for promoting or supporting these illegal activities."

On Thursday, the top cleric of central Pahang state was quoted in The Star newspaper as saying the state would also amend its Islamic laws to allow for action against homosexual-related activities.

"Islam prohibits deviant sexual orientation or behaviour," Abdul Rahman Osman was quoted as saying."Appropriate action should be taken to address these problems. We fear that this abnormal behaviour will be regarded as a norm."

In Malaysia, religion is within the respective states' purview and the authorities do not need federal government approval to effect legislative changes.

Last week, organisers were forced to cancel an annual sexuality rights festival in the capital, Kuala Lumpur, after police threatened to crack down on the event, saying it could create widespread unease and public disorder.

About 60 percent of the country's population of 28 million are Muslims, and Islamic law tenets are used as an official yardstick for the behaviour of followers. Still, Muslims often throng bars serving alcohol in Kuala Lumpur.

Extramarital sex is frowned upon and same-gender relationships often draw criticism although the rise of alternative media channels has bred a greater openness in debates about homosexuality.

But public discussions involving sexuality often assume a conservative veneer. Films and music are also heavily censored to remove explicit content, and homosexuals and transvestites complain of professional and social discrimination.

(Editing by Elaine Lies)
79. 2011-11-14 15:07  
Will that affect foreigner gay visitors to Malaysia? If so, not a good sign for Malaysia for tourists. Hmm. What is wrong with homosexuals regardless of their religion, color and race in Malaysia?? I know Malaysia is Islamic country however treat ethnic and religion all equal. I will be disappointed to see new Sharia laws in Malaysia.
Comment edited on 2011-11-14 15:12:13
80. 2011-11-14 15:50  
Last person to leave the country, please don't forget to switch off the lights.....
81. 2011-11-14 21:17  
Stone age?
82. 2011-11-14 22:59  
do these antigay laws apply to non religious gays in Malaysia also?
can the religious clerics there answer that question?
Comment #83 was deleted by its author on 2011-11-15 03:05
84. 2011-11-15 03:09  
Hmmmmm he is one of us
Gay are gays worst enemy
85. 2011-11-15 15:21  
This is an act of a very desperate minister who is hoping this will help win the upcoming election!! I doubt he will get re-elected and if he does no one will allow him to enact such changes. He already knows this to be true so he risks nothing and the gay community has to contend with threats of persecution without the opportunity to force the minister to pay for such threats!! He is the worst sort of coward!!
86. 2011-11-17 00:49  
I'd like to see how Ali would react if it was his own son or daughter who were gay/lesbian themselves,

"unsavoury culture creeping in and damaging the moral fabric of our society"? does he even know that he's promoting the exact same culture by discriminating against the minority cultures? to justify his actions in the name of Islam itself is already an utter disgrace...
Comment #87 was deleted by its author on 2011-11-17 13:16
88. 2011-11-17 13:17  
He would probably do all the things to them that he opposes.
89. 2011-11-17 16:27  
the world would have been great with out religion which becomes the basis of morality which has been use in every corners of our world to justify suppressive acts.
90. 2011-11-19 10:27  
How ignorance of these people! To me, listening to all the voices and show some respect are the things that they should start doing before ruling a community, state and even far up to a country.
91. 2011-11-25 06:25  
The CM was alleged to be involved in money politics and lost out to the other 3 who were chosen to be Vice Presidents. Now Mr Clean will take on gender who mind their own business and pay taxes and are obediently following the laws of this nation.

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