Kuala Lumpur: In a shocking incident, two Malaysian women have been sentenced to caning after they admitted having sex in contravention of strict Islamic laws, an official said today, sparking outrage from rights groups.
All members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community have increasingly faced pressure in the Muslim-majority country in recent years, with officials frequently accused of targeting them.
The women, aged 22 and 32, were arrested in April by Islamic enforcement officers after they were found in a car in a public square in northern Terengganu state, one of the most conservative areas of the country.
They were brought before an Islamic court on Sunday and admitted to breaking a sharia law that forbids sexual relations between women.
They were sentenced to six strokes of the cane each and fined 3,300 ringgit (USD 800), Mohamad Khasmizan Abdullah, a prosecutor with the Terengganu religious department told media persons.
“This is a serious case. The prosecutors urged the court to impose the maximum sentence,” Khasmizan said.
Two women in Malaysia beaten-up for making lesbian physical relationship:
He said if the sentence was carried out, they would be the first women to be caned in Terengganu for breaking Islamic laws. They are free on bail and their sentence is set to be carried out on August 28, although they have the right to appeal.
Malaysia operates a dual-track legal system and Islamic courts can handle religious and family matters, as well as cases such as adultery.
Malaysian Muslims, who make up over 60 per cent of the country’s 32 million inhabitants, have traditionally practised a tolerant brand of Islam but concerns have been growing in recent years that attitudes are becoming more conservative.
In a statement released by rights groups Justice for Sisters, and endorsed by other campaign groups, criticised the women’s sentence as “torture”.
It said, “Criminalisation of consensual sex between adults is a gross violation of human rights.”
National-level judo player stalks, send obscene pictures to women
New Delhi: A national-level gold medallist Judo player was arrested for allegedly stalking and sending obscene pictures to women through social media, the police said Monday.
The accused, who won a gold medal in Judo in Junior National, twice in School National and once in Federation Cup at National Level, is a resident of Bhiwani, Haryana, they said.
With his arrest, police claimed to have solved two cases of stalking registered in Delhi.
The accused used to send objectionable pictures and vulgar abusive messages through WhatsApp, Facebook and Instagram to women and girls, Harendra Singh, Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police (North), said.
Based on a complaint filed by a victim, police said a case was registered.
Gold medallist Judo player stalks, send obscene pictures to women:
In her complainant, she has alleged that the accused used to mentally harass her by sending objectionable messages and her pictures on Facebook and WhatsApp, the senior officer said.
During investigation, the technical surveillance of the suspect’s mobile phone was conducted and it was revealed that the accused had procured the SIM number on the basis of fake identity. Subsequently, a raid was conducted at Bhiwani and the accused was nabbed, the senior officer added.
Police said the accused had made more than 10 fake Facebook profiles just for sending messages to victims.
The accused used to also run private yoga classes, police said, adding that they are probing if other cases are registered against him.
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