THE Indonesian province of Aceh implemented new legislation over the weekend that included 100 lashes of the cane as punishment for homosexuality.
The law — which is part of the province’s implementation of Islamic sharia code and known as qanun jinaya, according to SBS News — also punishes for alcohol consumption, gambling, rape, social mixing between unmarried men and women, and sexual acts outside of marriage.
However, Ramli Sulaiman, chairman of the parliamentary commission that drafted the law, told AAP that there must be at least four witnesses who saw the acts themselves, along with clear evidence.
“We can’t just accuse people of having extramarital or homosexual sex,” he said.
Non-Muslims — including tourists visiting the provence — are also subject to the law, according to Fairfax Media.
However, Sulaiman said non-Muslims can choose to either be to be punished under sharia law or secular national law.
Human rights group Amnesty International has described the laws as an “enormous step backwards”.
156 people have reportedly been caned in Aceh since 2010 for gambling, mixing with the opposite sex, selling food during Ramadan and other offences.
Aceh won autonomy — and the right to impose Sharia codes — in 2001 as part of a deal with Jakarta to pacify attempts independence. A peace deal was finally signed in 2005, ending decades of conflict that had claimed over 13,000 lives.
The southeast Asian state of Brunei has also international criticism for imposing a more severe set of homophobic laws earlier this year.