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1 Feb 2016

Indonesia tackles homophobic harassment by Muslim hardliners

An Indonesian mayor has reprimanded a hardline Muslim group targeting homosexuals in the country’s third largest city, Bandung.

Government officials have ordered Islamic Defenders Front (FPI) to remove homophobic banners that call on gays and lesbians to leave the city.

Last week the FPI raided boarding houses in the city where they believed gay people to be staying.

 "I have reprimanded the FPI for what they admitted they did," mayor Ridwan Kamil said in a text message forwarded to Reuters by an aide. "Provocative banners have to be taken down."

The FPI has a reputation for violently harassing minorities, including Christians and other sects ofIslam. FPI members forced local government in Aceh province to tear down churches last year.

Although LGBT are largely tolerated in urban areas of Indonesia, in some conservative (and often Msuslim) areas they face discrimination. In the province of Aceh, the punishment for gay sex is 100 lashes.

Reader's Comments

1. 2016-02-02 21:27  
Hmm - maybe the tide is turning in Indonesia... There was a horrendous ILGA conference in Yogya a few years back, which was assaulted and threatened by these Islamic radicals with the police taking their side. If I remember, it had to be cancelled early because of this pressure.
2. 2016-02-04 18:13  
Also the Queer Film Fest faced great violence and bigotry, but they have struggled through. They recently screened several queer films here (Jogja and Jakarta) - including mine - to a great turnout. PLU Satu Hati in Jogja is also doing great educational outreach. I am so impressed by the hard work of the LGBT community here. Good people here, straight and gay, are unafraid of these FPI bigots. I am in Jogja right now, and will be in Bandung in a few days, and certainly have received much welcoming support. :-)
Comment edited on 2016-02-04 21:29:51
3. 2016-02-06 04:40  
Muslim and Catholic religions don't accept people being Gay 100% !
4. 2016-02-13 04:58  
For example can a gay couple get married in Catholic Church or a Muslim Mosque i don't think so!

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 ILGA Asia - Fridae partner for LGBT rights in Asia IGLHRC - Fridae Partner for LGBT rights in Asia