Muslim Majority country Indonesia is soon to bring in a law that would criminalize live-in, gay marriages which is due to be adopted in the next week.
According to reports, the new criminal code got approval by the parliament and the government after a final draft was presented on Wednesday, Reuters reports.
This new code would replace a Dutch colonial-era set of laws.
“The state must protect citizens from behavior that is contrary to the supreme precepts of God,” said Nasir Djamil, a politician from the Prosperous Justice Party.
He added all party leaders agreed to it given the nation’s founding ideology was based on belief in God.
Under the proposed laws, unmarried couples who “live together as a husband and wife” could be jailed for six months or face a maximum fine of 10 million rupiah ($710), which is three months’ salary for many Indonesians.
The village chiefs are vested with rights to initiate proceedings with filing complaint with the police. Parents, children and spouses can also lodge a complaint.
The inclusion of the new power for village chiefs was warranted because “the victim of adultery is also society”, another lawmaker, Teuku Taufiqulhadi, said.
said millions of Indonesians could be ensnared by the new laws.
An NGO the Institute for Criminal Justice Reform noted a study indicating that 40 per cent of Indonesian adolescents engaged in pre-marital sexual activity.
“Across the board, this is a ratcheting up of conservatism. It’s extremely regressive,” said Tim Lindsey, director of the University of Melbourne’s Centre for Indonesian Law, Islam and Society.
One-year imprisonment can also can be applied to a person engaging in sexual activities with anybody other than their lawfully wedded partner and is arrested if a close relatives notifies or files a complaint with the police.
The law also impacts homosexuals as gay marriage is not recognized in Indonesia.
The code also establishes prison terms for those found to commit “obscene acts”, defined as violating norms of decency and politeness through “lust or sexuality”, whether by heterosexuals or gay people.
Foreigners are not exempted from these new laws and tourists practicing these illegal activity will face jail for extramarital sexual activities said Taufiqulhadi.
Women could face jail term of 4-years imprisonment who undergo abortion, applicable if there was no medical emergency or rape involved.
Any person promoting contraception would face a six-month prison term for unauthorized discussion of “tools of abortion”.
Insulting the government and state institutions also carries a prison term.