Current Affairs

Politician says ‘rampant’ LGBT people are destroying Indonesia

Jasmine Andersson March 27, 2018
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Indonesia's Minister of Forestry Zulkifli Hasan delivers a speech during a ceremony in Jakarta on February 5, 2013. The world's third-largest paper producer Asia Pulp and Paper said on February 5 it had stopped using logs from Indonesia's natural forests, after fierce campaigning by green groups against the company. AFP PHOTO / ADEK BERRY (Photo credit should read ADEK BERRY/AFP/Getty Images)

A top politician in Indonesia has stirred controversy by claiming that ‘rampant’ LGBT+ people are destroying Indonesia.

Speaking about the threats of ‘globalisation’ and ‘modernisation’, Zulkifli Hasan said that licentious behaviours from Westernised countries are encouraging the ‘unstoppable’ behaviour of LGBT+ people.

“The fact is very sad, we even lose who we are, because of the loss of identity and values,” Zulkifli said in his speech as the chair of the People’s Consultative Assembly (MPR).

“Incoming foreign values are believed to be great and followed by people.Then with that comes the rush of LGBT lifestyle, liquor, promiscuity, drugs which will be unstoppable again [in Indonesia],” he added.

TAKENGON, INDONESIA: An Acehnese executor flogs a convicted woman in Takengon, in Indonesian central Aceh province, 19 August 2005 after an Islamic sharia court ordered four women to be flogged for petty gambling offences. The public lashing was the second since the Indonesian government allowed the western province to implement religious law as part of broader autonomy granted in 2001 to curb a separatist Islamist insurgency. AFP PHOTO (STR/AFP/Getty Images)
An Acehnese executor flogs a convicted woman (Photo by STR/AFP/Getty Images)

In spite of the politician’s comments, the likes of the Jakarta Post have reached out to condemn the remarks in an editorial.

“We appear to be witnessing the emergence of “Trumpism”, where spinning hate is becoming the new norm in Indonesian politics. What a sorry state of affairs,” wrote the publication.

A rising crackdown on LGBT+ people in Indonesia is affecting queer rights in the country.

An Indonesian province where LGBTQ+ people face rife persecution wants to introduce beheadings.

Indonesian Gay Couple
A man is lashed in Aceh for having gay sex (Getty)

The province, Aceh, is the only one in Indonesia to enforce Sharia law.

Beheadings have been internationally condemned as a form of punishment by the UN.

Lawmakers could soon pass a bill to make being gay illegal.

Although a similar bill was blocked in December, the bill has returned with the support of ten different political parties.

If the motion does pass, it will be punishable by five years in prison.

“The hateful rhetoric against this community that is being cultivated seemingly for cynical political purposes will only deepen their suffering and create unnecessary divisions,” said UN Human Rights Commissioner Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein.

“Indonesia has since 1998 managed to transition to democracy and couple it with strong economic growth.

“At a time when it is consolidating its democratic gains, we urge Indonesians to move forward – not backwards – on human rights.”

More: Asia, Indonesia, Indonesia, LGBT rights

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