According to this story, “the moderate Muslim country has a dual-track justice system, in which Islamic courts operate alongside civil courts.” So, a “moderate Muslim country” can issue and carry out caning sentences? A local sultan’s intervention in this case is not remotely enough to prevent more such sentences in the future.
(CNN) — A Malaysian model who was sentenced last year to six strokes of a cane for drinking beer in public has had her sentence commuted, her lawyer said Thursday.
Kartika Sari Dewi Shukarno will now instead be required to perform three weeks of community service — beginning Friday.
The sentencing drew headlines worldwide at the time and caused an uproar, with many citing it as an example of growing fundamentalism in the multiracial country.
An Islamic court in the eastern state of Pahang fined Kartika $1,400 (5,000 Malaysian ringgit) and ordered that she be stroked with a rattan cane for drinking beer at a hotel bar in 2007.
Curious wording. Language barrier, or downplaying the flogging?
The sentence was to have been carried out Thursday.
However on Wednesday night, the sultan of Pahang sent a letter where he commuted the woman’s sentence, said Kartika’s lawyer Adham Jamalullail Ibrahim.
Each state in Malaysia is ruled by a sultan who, in effect, is the guardian of Islamic matters in that state. He can overrule the decision of an Islamic court — and Sultan Ahmad Shah did so in this case.
Kartika, a mother of two, was visiting Malaysia from Singapore when her troubles began.
She said she lost her job as a nurse in Singapore and took up part-time modeling to support her husband in raising their two children. Her son has cerebral palsy; her daughter a heart condition.
She pleaded guilty, paid the fine, and wanted her caning to be carried out in public.
“I want to move on. This case has been hanging over me for a long time,” she said in August.
The case drew widespread attention and condemnation, in and outside Malaysia.
And the standard boilerplate:
The moderate Muslim country has a dual-track justice system, in which Islamic courts operate alongside civil courts….