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    » 02/18/2010, 00.00

    MALAYSIA

    Kuala Lumpur applies Shariah, three women flogged in prison for adultery



    The sentence carried out for the first time. The victims suffered six lashings each. Four men also convicted for sex outside of marriage. Interior Minister: It is a way to bring people "to the right path." Model punished for drinking beer awaits sentence.

    Kuala Lumpur (AsiaNews / Agencies) - Malaysian authorities have flogged three women for having had sexual relations outside of marriage. This is the first time such punishment has been applied. Together with women, four men were also canned because guilty of adultery. The punishment was carried out on 9 February, in a women's prison near the capital Kuala Lumpur.  

    In the predominantly Muslim South-East Asian nation, the Malay which are the largest ethic group are subject to Shariah, or Islamic law. Chinese and Indian minorities, however, respond only to the civil court, in a two-track parallel judicial system that are independent of each other.  

    The women were subjected to six lashings each. One of them has already been released, the second will be released in the coming days and the third, finally, will be freed next June, after serving the sentence. The prison officials have not explained in details how the flogging took place, but local law experts say that "this kind of punishment is usually quite light on the women: they are merely symbolic."  

    Interior Minister Hishammuddin Hussein, explained that the "punishment" caused "pain, but no injuries" and hopes it will not be "misunderstood so much to undermine the purity of Islam." "The punishment - adds the charge of affairs - is a lesson and a way to give the chance to those who make mistakes to get back on the right path."  

    Associations and human rights activists, responding instead that the beating suffered by three women, describe it as "only the tip of the iceberg." According to official sources, in fact, by 2002 more than 35 thousand people - mostly foreigners - have been flogged.

      Last year the case of Kartika Sari Dewi Shukarno, a 32 year-old model and mother of two children, convicted of drinking beer, caused a great stir. She was the first woman to have undergone this punishment, but thanks to the wide international attention raised by the case, the penalty has not yet been implemented. Kartika (pictured) has called for the flogging to be carried out in public. Recently the courts have begun the review process, pending the appeal proceedings.  

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    See also

    29/09/2009 MALAYSIA
    Judgment upheld on appeal, the Malaysian model will be flogged
    The Chief Justice ruled that the decision is in accordance with law. Religious department of the State of Pahang tasked to carry out the sentence. In late August the sentence was suspended as a sign of "respect" for Ramadan and the government had requested a review of the case.

    24/06/2008 MALAYSIA
    In Kuala Lumpur, high heels and lipstick prohibited for Muslim women
    The directive comes from the municipal council of Kota Baru, dominated by a conservative Islamic party. The objective is ostensibly "to prevent rape and protect women's dignity and morality".

    19/08/2009 MALAYSIA
    Malaysian model punished for drinking beer, caned in accordance with Sharia
    The 32-year-old woman accepts sentence and will not appeal. Drinking alcoholic beverages is banned under Islamic law. Prosecutor claims the verdict is “educational” in purpose. In her case the cane to flog her will be “lighter” than for men.

    21/06/2007 MALAYSIA
    More than 500 people light ‘candles of hope’ for religious freedom
    Vigil participants come from different religious background. They meet at the Dataran Merdeka in support of M Revathi, a Hindu woman torn away from her husband and child and forced into an Islamic “rehabilitation” centre. Banners call on the state to respect religious freedom and the right to love.

    10/05/2013 QATAR
    "Sharia law does not provide for the stoning," the debate within Islam
    The statement by a scholar of Islamic faith in a Qatari magazine lifts the lid on the issue in the Muslim world.



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