Imposition of Shariah on non-Muslims proposed in Aceh

By staff writers
May 27, 2006

Imposition of Shariah on non-Muslims proposed in Aceh

-27/05/06

A bill proposed by lawmakers in the Indonesian province of Aceh would impose Shariah law on all non-Muslims, the armed forces and law enforcement officers, a local police official has announced.

The news comes two months after the Deutsche Presse-Agentur warned of ìTaliban-style Islamic police terrorizing Indonesia's Acehî.

Shariah took effect in 2005 in Aceh, a predominantly Muslim region on the northernmost tip of Sumatra. But it only applied to Muslims.

In the months following the tsunami in December 2004, the Aceh government had begun vigorously enforcing a three-year-old provincial statute on Shariah. Human rights groups have expressed concern.

Alyasa Abubakar, head of the relevant local government office, declared recently: "Based on equality in law, Acehnese people have formally proposed ... to apply the Islamic Shariah Law to all those residing in Aceh, including military, police and non-Muslims."

The provincial Islamic law department has called a further crackdown on 'immorality' - alcohol, gambling, women appearing in public without headscarves or venturing out at night without a male escort.

Recently a young Acehnese woman was allegedly publicly flogged for kissing her boyfriend in public, while another 23-year-old has been locked up in Acehnese jail for more than two weeks without access to an attorney after being caught drinking beer.

Shariah police are said to have barged into the lobby of a leading Banda Aceh hotel to arrest three women attending an international conference because they were not wearing headscarves.

With source acknowledgments to Bartholemew's Notes on Religion.

[Also on Ekklesia: Rebuilding in Indonesia a year on from the tsunami; Catholic agency arranging aid to earthquake zone; Aid agencies meet with Blair to discuss tsunami; Churches manage to ship supplies to earthquake zone; Millions mourn tsunami victims one year on; Earthquake has increased fears say Christian workers; Missionaries accused of exploiting tsunami victims]

Imposition of Shariah on non-Muslims proposed in Aceh

-27/05/06

A bill proposed by lawmakers in the Indonesian province of Aceh would impose Shariah law on all non-Muslims, the armed forces and law enforcement officers, a local police official has announced.

The news comes two months after the Deutsche Presse-Agentur warned of ìTaliban-style Islamic police terrorizing Indonesia's Acehî.

Shariah took effect in 2005 in Aceh, a predominantly Muslim region on the northernmost tip of Sumatra. But it only applied to Muslims.

In the months following the tsunami in December 2004, the Aceh government had begun vigorously enforcing a three-year-old provincial statute on Shariah. Human rights groups have expressed concern.

Alyasa Abubakar, head of the relevant local government office, declared recently: "Based on equality in law, Acehnese people have formally proposed ... to apply the Islamic Shariah Law to all those residing in Aceh, including military, police and non-Muslims."

The provincial Islamic law department has called a further crackdown on 'immorality' - alcohol, gambling, women appearing in public without headscarves or venturing out at night without a male escort.

Recently a young Acehnese woman was allegedly publicly flogged for kissing her boyfriend in public, while another 23-year-old has been locked up in Acehnese jail for more than two weeks without access to an attorney after being caught drinking beer.

Shariah police are said to have barged into the lobby of a leading Banda Aceh hotel to arrest three women attending an international conference because they were not wearing headscarves.

With source acknowledgments to Bartholemew's Notes on Religion.

[Also on Ekklesia: Rebuilding in Indonesia a year on from the tsunami; Catholic agency arranging aid to earthquake zone; Aid agencies meet with Blair to discuss tsunami; Churches manage to ship supplies to earthquake zone; Millions mourn tsunami victims one year on; Earthquake has increased fears say Christian workers; Missionaries accused of exploiting tsunami victims]

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