Islamic radicalisation poses a threat to LGBT community in Indonesia

    Islamic radicalisation is on the rise in Indonesia. Groups like the Islamic Defenders Front and other extremist outfits are gaining ground in the polity of the country. There is a demand to scrap the Constitution which guarantees secularism and minority rights.

    Islamists have been aggressively campaigning for strict Shariah law on Muslims and want stricter punishment for what they call “diseases” like prostitution, homosexuality and celebration of Western holidays.

    Islamic Defenders Front chief Maman Suryadi Abdurrahman says, “Our goal is to make Indonesia, in which Islam is the majority religion of the people, to be religious and clean from immorality. We want an Islamist country, not an Islamic state because a religious country will prevent the nation from suffering social injustice.”

    The strident posture of Islamists has put fear in the minds of minorities and other groups such as LGBT community.

    Although homosexuality is not a crime in Indonesia, intensive campaigns are being carried out by Islamists to make same-sex relations a criminal offence with stoning to death as punishment.  LGBT persons are shunned by the family and friends and are forced to live a life in seclusion. Since it is a taboo, no political parties are ready to take up their cause.

    Political position

    • Defence Minister says LGBT rights are more dangerous than “nuclear war”
    • Mental Health Director at the Ministry of Health says LGBT people have “psychiatric disorders”
    • 141 men arrested at an alleged sex party in Jakarta under pornography laws
    • Two young gay men caned 83 times in Aceh for homosexual sex
    • Indonesia’s Constitutional Court narrowly rejects the application by Muslim group to criminalize same-sex relations
    • Twelve Indonesian transgender women shaved, stripped in a raid on salons in Aceh

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