10 Women Arrested for ‘Being Lesbians’ in Indonesia
Police have reportedly arrested 10 women on suspicion of lesbian activity in Indonesia.
The women were detained in Padang, West Sumatra, over the weekend, reports Reuters.
The Facebook account for Padang’s police force posted about the arrests on Monday (November 5).
Police said the women were arrested on Sunday (November 4) on suspicion of “lesbian deviant behaviour.”
In a statement, head of police Pol Yadrison explained that intelligence authorities had been monitoring the women’s activities on social media.
Yadrison said that one of the women’s Facebook account showed her “kissing and cuddling” with another woman, as if they were “men and women.”
“From this discovery the officer finally conducted a search and managed to find the identity and whereabouts of the photo uploader,” said Yadrison.
The head of police added that authorities in Indonesia are currently receiving reports about suspected LGBT+ activities “almost every day.”
In Indonesia, gay sex is illegal in the province of Aceh under Sharia law and for Muslims living in the city of Palembang.
However, the country is updating its criminal code, which looks set to ban same-sex sexual activity throughout the country.
Indonesian authorities have also clamped down on LGBT+ activities in the past year.
In October, two Indonesian men were arrested on suspicion of setting up a Facebook page that co-ordinated gay hook-ups.
In July, two men were publicly flogged for having gay sex in Aceh.
And, in February, Indonesian authorities set up a task force to stop “the LGBT disease.”
The new task force was established by Mayor Muhammad Idris of Depok, a district in West Java with more than 1.75 million people.
According to Indonesian publication Kompas, Idris said: “Religion has agreed that LGBT [people commit] forbidden acts, but legally we will overcome this problem so as not to worsen the issue.”
The mayor added: “This is our effort to prevent LGBT because many phone calls come to the Social Service requesting to help solve the LGBT disease”.
He said that “the campaign of rejecting LGBT will be conducted by this integrated team,” which would, he explained, “coach” LGBT people.
In January, police arrested 12 trans women in Aceh, shaving their heads and forcing them to wear typically male clothing in an effort to “turn them into men.”
In 2017, Indonesian police raided nightclubs, saunas and hotel rooms on suspicion of LGBT+ activities being carried out inside.