BIREUN, Indonesia — Fifteen convicted gamblers were flogged Friday for illegal gaming in Indonesia — the first time caning was used as punishment in the world’s most populous Muslim country.
After traditional Friday prayers, the 15 convicts were brought to a stage erected outside a mosque, where about 600 people gathered to watch in Bireun, a town in the semiautonomous Aceh region.
Religious officials wearing masks to conceal their identities struck the men on their backs with rattan canes. The blows did not break the skin and the men did not appear in extreme pain. At least one smiled and laughed during the caning.
“I am ready to be punished, but what about everyone else, including big time corruptors and thieves?” said Zakaria, 60, the oldest man beaten. “They should also be whipped.”