indonesia-lgbt

Police in Indonesia have arrested 141 men for attending what the authorities have called a “gay sex party”.

The arrests took place in the capital city of Jakarta on Sunday (May 21).

It marks the latest in a string of mass arrests in Indonesia, where the LGBT community appears to be coming under increasing pressure and persecution from the authorities.

indonesia-lgbt

Nationally, Indonesian law does not explicitly prohibit private, non-commercial homosexual relations between consenting adults.

In Aceh Province Islamic-based by-laws have been passed as part of an agreement to end the conflict between the country’s military and Muslim separatists.

While homosexuality is not against any such laws in Jakarta, people have been arrested and punished under the broadly-written pornography legislation.

“There were gay people who were caught strip-teasing and masturbating in the scene,” Jakarta police spokesman Raden Argo Yuwono told BBC Indonesian.

One Briton and one person from Singapore were said to be among the attendees at Sunday’s party.

Entry to the event was 185,000 rupiahs (around £10).

Eight men were arrested at a so-called “gay party” in Indonesia’s second-biggest city Subayara last month.

Organisers there could face up to 15 years in prison.

Earlier this month, two men in Aceh who were arrested for having gay sex became the latest in the province to be sentenced for the “crime”.

The judge increased the number of lashes from the 80 requested by the prosecutor to 85.

indonesia-lgbt

In sentencing, he said that having been “proven legally and convincingly guilty of committing gay sex, the defendants are sentenced to 85 strokes of the cane in public”.

Anti-LGBT discrimination is said to be costing Indonesia as much as $12 billion every year, according to a recent study.

The losses are a result of barriers to employment, education, healthcare, as well as “physical, psychological, sexual, economic and cultural violence” suffered by LGBT citizens.

France has been urged by human rights groups to put pressure on Indonesia to do more to protect the rights of LGBT+ people.

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