The country of Brunei is on the north coast of the island of Borneo next to Malaysia and Indonesia. Brunei, however, is stricter in its Islamic-based sharia law than its neighbors. And now they’ve proved that with their updated anti-LGBT laws.
The nation of Brunei will subject anyone caught engaging in adultery and gay sex with death by stoning. The penal code will also punish theft with amputation of the right hand for first offenses and left foot for second ones.
These rules will be instated next Wednesday after being held off for four years by heavy international criticism. The laws were first announced in 2013 but were delayed after officials discussed the logistics of such punishments. Plus, rights groups vehemently opposed the laws.
In response to this announcement, human rights advocates have decried the decision. According to the South China Morning Post, Amnesty International urged Brunei to “immediately halt” these new punishments.
Rachel Chhoa-Howard, a Brunei researcher for Amnesty International, said on the matter:
“Pending provisions in Brunei’s Penal Code would allow stoning and amputation as punishments – including for children, to name only their most heinous aspects.”
“Brunei must immediately halt its plans to implement these vicious punishments, and revise its Penal Code in compliance with its human rights obligations. The international community must urgently condemn Brunei’s move to put these cruel penalties into practice.”
“To legalize such cruel and inhuman penalties is appalling of itself. Some of the potential ‘offences’ should not even be deemed crimes at all, including consensual sex between adults of the same gender.”
She later added:
“These abusive provisions received widespread condemnation when plans were first discussed five years ago.”
“Brunei’s Penal Code is a deeply flawed piece of legislation containing a range of provisions that violate human rights.”
“As well as imposing cruel, inhuman and degrading punishments, it blatantly restricts the rights to freedom of expression, religion, and belief, and codifies discrimination against women and girls.”