Wednesday, 10 June 2015
SHARIA LAW IN INDONESIA
The National 10 June 2015
The capital of Indonesia’s devoutly Moslem province of Aceh has imposed restrictions on women working after 11pm to prevent other crimes.
Women who work in places such as sports or entertainment centres and tourist spots should go home by 11pm from a directive that took effect on 4 June.
Children and women are advised not to be in such places after 10pm unless they are accompanied by a male relative. Women in Aceh are vulnerable to sexual harassment.
Employers could lose business licences if they flout the directive but there are no punishments for women who break the directive.
Women in some professions such as nurses and mid-wives are exempted from the curfew. Sharia law has been accepted in Aceh since the early 2000s as part of Jakarta’s attempt to pacify demands for independence
Drinking, gambling and mixing with the opposite sex while unmarried are punishable by public caning.
Comment: From the point of view of an outsider, the application of Sharia law in Indonesia may be of a more gentle kind having been introduced in ages past by Moslem traders.
One cannot help but compare with the punishment of women in Jordan where honour killing is common. Women are not allowed out except escorted by brothers and punishment may follow any disobedience.
In Jordan, respectable women are not allowed to enter any profession where they touch men such as nurses or doctors.
A Moslem friend in Papua New Guinea stated that traditional Melanesian culture is similar to Sharia law. That will need more thought. I will report back on that one.