Will Indonesia’s new ‘no sex before marriage’ laws target LGBT couples?


Indonesia has just approved a long debated new penal code and a provision which has sex and co-habitation outside of marriage illegal has caused alarm. As soon as the new laws were announced there was immediately concern that western tourists in popular destinations such as Bali may suddenly find themselves unable to book a holiday without showing a marriage certificate. People found guilty of pre-marital sex could face a year in prison or a fine of 10 million rupiah, those guilty of cohabitation would face six months in jail or a fine of 10 million rupiah. Bali’s tourism chief Tjokorda Bagus Pemayun reacted quickly saying that foreigners should not be deterred from visiting the island, because the law will require the complaint to be made by a close relative and was unlikely to affect foreigners.

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