No kidding, really?
“Indonesia’s Islamic laws are ‘abusive’, report says,” from the BBC, November 30 (thanks to Glynn):
Two Islamic laws applied in the Indonesian province of Aceh violate people’s rights and are implemented abusively, a new report has concluded.
Human Rights Watch (HRW) says two of five local laws based on the Sharia legal code discriminate against women.
It says the laws against “seclusion” – association by unmarried individuals of the opposite sex – and dress codes are also not applied to wealthy people.
Islamic law applies only in Aceh in the secular state of Indonesia.
The report by New York-based HRW, Policing Morality: Abuses in the Application of Sharia in Aceh, Indonesia, notes that the rights group takes no position on Sharia law as a whole – a system its supporters say provides a comprehensive guide to behaviour.
However, it says the “seclusion” law, which makes association by unmarried individuals of the opposite sex a criminal offence in some circumstances, and laws on dress requirements, are discriminatory.
“These two laws deny people’s right to make their own decisions about who they meet and what they wear,” said Elaine Pearson, deputy Asia director at Human Rights Watch.
“The laws, and their selective enforcement, are an invitation to abuse,” she said.
The prohibition of men and women who are not blood relatives or married to one another from being together in an isolated place has been used to bar people simply meeting and talking in a quiet place, the report says.
Abuses include aggressive interrogations and attempts to force people to marry.
At least one case of rape of a woman in detention by Sharia police officers has occurred, the report says.
HRW says Sharia police officers have told investigators that they sometimes force women and girls to submit to virginity exams as part of the investigation….