Indonesian legislation revives pornography law

by correspondent Michel Maas*www.dailymail.com

 

18-09-2008

More than two years ago Indonesia’s parliament shelved legislation which would ban pornography after people throughout the country took to the streets in mass demonstrations. Suddenly, in the middle of the Muslim fast month Ramadan, the legislation has been reintroduced.

The bill introduced two years ago was a concealed effort by observant Muslims to ban not only pornography but also “immoral behaviour” such as kissing in public. It would also have made it a punishable offence for unmarried couples to live together.

Hundreds of thousands of Indonesians took to the streets to protest this attempt to introduce Islamic Sharia law through the back door. Tens of thousands of Muslims demonstrated in support of the proposed legislation.

The Indonesian House of Representatives postponed passage of the bill because it caused too much division in society. Now a revised version of the bill has been reintroduced. And it seems that its passage is inevitable unless there are again massive protests against it.

Common decency
The most objectionable passages – the sections concerning “common decency” have been removed. However there is still enough to drive many Indonesians to a frenzy. Human rights activists, press freedom activists, women’s rights groups, artists and nearly the entire population of Bali opposed the new anti-pornography bill.

 continue    www.radionetherlands.nl/currentaffairs/region/asiapacific/080918-Indonesian-pornography      

 

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