Malaysia: Lesbians BEATEN with cane for ‘trying to have sex’

Two Malaysian women convicted of attempting to have lesbian sex in a auto have been caned in a religious court.

It's reportedly the first time this type of punishment has been carried out against two women for attempting to have sex, according to Insider.

The two women, aged 22 and 32, were caned six times each in the Terengganu sharia high court just after 10am, after the sentence was read out.

About 150 people were present in the courtroom, watching as a lady officer from Kajang Women's Prison carried out the sentence with a cane measuring about a metre.

Under the Malaysian legal system, Muslim citizens are subject both to secular criminal and civil law and to sharia laws governing religious adherence, while the sizable Buddhist, Christian and Hindu minorities have no obligation to obey Islamic law.

They were caned at the Sharia High Court in the state capital Kuala Terengganu.

On August 18, 2018, a lesbian couple was fined $796 (RM3,300) and ordered six strokes each of the rotan after pleading guilty to engaging in same-sex relations in a vehicle in northern Terengganu in April.

Muslim Lawyers' Association deputy president Abdul Rahim Sinwan defended the caning of the two unidentified women, insisting that the punishment under Islamic law isn't painful and was meant to teach the women to repent.

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Charles Santiago, a lawmaker who is part of the governing coalition, said the punishment was "outrageous" and "a form of torture".

Rights groups had previously urged the Malaysian government to drop the case, which they argued constituted torture under global human rights law.

The Justice for Sisters activist said the group was concerned the case would set a risky precedent for the increased policing of morality and sexual identities in Malaysia.

While activists decried Monday's caning as a grave violation of human rights, officials in Terengganu claimed the sharia punishment was justified. The most shocking fact was also that the duo were caned in public among hundred of onlookers. "Corporal punishment is a form of torture regardless of your intention".

"Islam teaches us to look after the dignity of every human being".

The case has sparked widespread condemnation and focused attention on what rights groups say is a deteriorating climate for the gay community in the Muslim-majority country. The new government, he added, was voted in "on the premise of inclusion" and must repeal laws that criminalize homosexuality. "And that mercy is preferable to punishment." . A few weeks ago, authorities removed the portraits of two LGBT rights activists from a public exhibition.

"Sexual acts between two consenting adults should not be criminalised, let alone punished with whipping".

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