Pink News – Brunei: ‘Stone the gays’ law to be phased in from tomorrow

Brunei: ‘Stone the gays’ law to be phased in from tomorrow

The Sultan of Brunei has confirmed that a law calling for homosexuals to be stoned to death will be phased in from tomorrow.

The law was announced earlier this month, and replaces the maximum ten-year prison sentence for homosexuality with death by stoning.

It was condemned by the UN, and a host of celebrities including Stephen FryEllen DeGeneres and Sharon Osbourne, who targeted the Brunei-owned Dorchester Collection for boycotts.

The sweeping law was initially due to come into effect on April 22, but was postponed due to ‘unforeseen circumstances’.

Despite the delays, the Sultan today confirmed the law, which will apply to both Muslims and non-Muslims, will be phased in over a two-year period from tomorrow.

He said: “Today, I place my faith in and am grateful to Allah the almighty to announce that tomorrow, Thursday 1 May 2014, will see the enforcement of Sharia law phase one, to be followed by the other phases.”

According to the Brunei Times, the first phase of the sweeping law will increase fines and prison sentences for various crimes.

Phase two, which restores corporal punishment including amputations for thieves, will come into effect within 12 months, and phase three, which introduces the death penalty, will come into effect within 24 months.

Under the law, the death penalty can be applied for rape, adultery, sodomy, extramarital sexual relations for Muslims, insulting any verses of the Quran and Hadith, blasphemy, declaring oneself a prophet or non-Muslim, and murder.

UN Spokesman  Rupert Colville said: “Application of the death penalty for such a broad range of offenses contravenes international law.”

“Under international law, stoning people to death constitutes torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment and is thus clearly prohibited.”

Uganda Lawmakers Draft Another Anti-Gay Law – Edge On The Net

 

Uganda Lawmakers Draft Another Anti-Gay Law

by Jason St. Amand
National News Editor
Tuesday Apr 29, 2014
Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni  (Source:AP Photo)

Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse for Uganda’s LGBT citizens, lawmakers from the landlocked east Africa country recently drafted another anti-gay law, Reuters reports.

Uganda’s new proposed law would ban non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from promoting gay rights. The measure comes after Uganda President Yoweri Museveni signed a highly controversial bill into law in February that punishes those who are caught having gay sex with life in jail.

The cabinet is currently studying the draft bill before it’s introduced to parliament. James Baba, junior internal affairs minister, told Reuters that if the measure is signed into law, it would prohibit NGOs from getting involved with Uganda’s politics.

“There are some NGOs who have come here to undermine us, to promote very bad behavior like homosexuality,” Baba told Reuters. “As a responsible government we need to check that. They (NGOs) will not be able to do that when we pass this law.”

The new law will also require charities to tell the government their annual budgets, their sources of income and will also have present accountability for any funds received from those sources at the end of the year, Reuters reports.

Baba said foreign NGOs would be banned from commenting or involving themselves in Ugandan politics.

“It is for Ugandans to say whether Museveni should rule or should not rule,” Baba told the news site. “As a foreign NGO, what stake do you have in our politics? Our nationals have every right to put their government to task and to question the performance of government, but outsiders should not have this privilege.”

Those against the draft law say it would encroach on Uganda citizen’s civil liberties, especially the LGBT community.

“What is happening is that rather than use brute force, Museveni’s politics is increasingly dependent on use of money to win elections,” Nicholas Opiyo, a human rights lawyer based in Kampala, said. “So in order for them to have a free hand in spending public resources to buy votes in the next election, what do you do? You begin to restrict NGOs.”