A strict Islamic district in Indonesia has ruled out that men and women can’t dine in together in restaurants and cafes unless they are married or related.
Authorities in Indonesia’s Islamic province Aceh announced the ban and said it was being imposed to make women “more obedient” and “well behaved.”
The province operates under the Shariah Law (Islamic Law). In Aceh, 98 percent of its 5 million residents are Muslims. It is the only region in Indonesia that imposes the law.
Under the ban, women wouldn’t be allowed to share a table with men unless and until they are married or they are accompanied by a close male relative.
“The objective is to protect women's dignity so they will feel more comfortable, more at ease, more well-behaved and will not do anything that violates Shariah,” said Jufliwan, the head of the local sharia agency.
Moreover, the new directive instructed restaurants and cafes to not serve women who were alone after 9 PM.
However, this is not the first time the actions of the province are being criticized.
Aceh punished a number of people, including unwed couples and prostitutes, in front of a baying crowd.
Caning is widely used as a form of corporal punishment in the conservative Indonesian province for actions such as consumption of alcohol, gambling, adultery, prostitution and gay sex.
In 2016, Aceh caned 339 people. Flogging was done in public, which prompted international criticism. So, instead of doing away with the brutal practice, Aceh decided to carry out caning behind closed doors. Journalists and adults will still be able to watch but recording will not be allowed.
This apparent change came after two men received 82 lashes each in May 2017 for having gay sex. The disturbing video of the whipping drew widespread condemnation. While homosexuality is not illegal under Indonesian national law, it is in the province.
Restrictions on women are nothing new in the country.
Recently, the regional representatives council for Bengkulu (DPRD) in the country reportedly planned to fight violence against women and sexual harassment by making “sexy clothing” illegal in the province.
In order brutal action, an Indonesian girl who’s been raped repeatedly by her own brother was arrested for having an abortion.
The 15-year-old was the victim of abuse perpetrated by her 17-year-old brother eight times throughout the past year. During their hearing last week, the 15-year-old was handed a six-month sentence while her brother was given a two-year sentence for sexual assault of a minor.
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