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Indonesian soldiers jailed for having gay sex as anti-LGBTQ+ crackdown continues

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Two Indonesian soldiers were kicked out of the army and have been sentenced to seven months in jail for having gay sex.

Gay sex is currently legal for civilians in most of the country, according to the South China Morning Post, however it is banned for members of the military.

Soon, though, it will be banned for everyone, as the country just passed a new law banning sex outside of marriage, and same-sex marriages are not legal in the country.

The law will not take effect for three years but will apply to both locals and foreigners.

The ruling against the soldiers reportedly stated that “The defendants’ acts of committing deviant sexual behavior with the same sex was very inappropriate because as soldiers, the defendants should be an example for the people in the defendants’ surrounding environment” and declared that their “actions were very much against the law or any religious provisions.”

The sentence is part of a larger crackdown on LGBTQ+ people in the country.

“This has been the increasing pattern among the Indonesian armed forces and police in recent years,” said Amnesty International Indonesia director Usman Hamid, “where [service] members were being fired or taken into court just for who they are, who they love, who they like.”

A gay party was also raided in 2020, and after publicly humiliating 141 men arrested in a gay sauna in 2017, the government banned all LGBTQ+ TV contenttried to shut down an international LGBTQ+ sporting event, and the Aceh region arrested 12 transgender women and shaved their heads to “make them men.”

An Indonesian mayor recently called for increased raids against LGBTQ+ people. In Aceh province (the one place where homosexuality is currently banned), gay and trans prisoners face 100 lashes as punishment for being themselves.

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