26 Lashes for Alleged Sex Outside Marriage

Shariah Punishment

Indonesia - Most Muslim-majority countries incorporate sharia at some level in their legal framework, with many calling it the highest law or the source of law of the land in their constitution. Sharia, Sharia law, or Islamic law is the religious law forming part of the Islamic tradition. It is derived from the religious precepts of Islam, particularly the Quran and the Hadith. People can face floggings for a range of offences -- from gambling, to drinking alcohol, to gay sex or any sexual relationship outside marriage.

The only place in the world’s most populated Muslim-majority country, Indonesia, where Sharia law is imposed is the Aceh region on the island of Sumatra. Since the Aceh region gained special autonomy from the Indonesian authorities in 2001, it began to impose Sharia law. In 2014, the government in Aceh approved a law obliging every citizen to follow the Sharia Islamic legal code regardless of their religion.

An Indonesian woman known as Linda has been accused for having sex outside marriage and she was canned 26 times on a stage and in front of a crowd of people. Her crime was spending time in close proximity with a man who is not her husband. Of course, a large crowd came to watch her punishment, while she was devastated and covered her head with a veil. A woman was examined by a doctor and officials after being canned for cheating on her husband.

Under the law, men and women who are not spouses are not allowed to get too close due to the 'khalwat' offence -- and punishment is by public caning. After the brutal punishment of the poor woman was over, the man she is accused of having sex with was also brought to the stage, flanked by two male police officers.

Here are some strict rules in Sharia law, mostly about women’s rights:

  • Criticizing or denying any part of the Quran is punishable by death.
  • Testimonies of four male witnesses are required to prove rape against a woman.
  • A woman who has been raped cannot testify in court against her rapist(s).
  • A woman's testimony in court, allowed in property cases, carries ½ the weight of a man's.
  • A female heir inherits half of what a male heir inherits.
  • A woman cannot drive a car, as it leads to fitnah (upheaval).
  • A woman cannot speak alone to a man who is not her husband or relative.

Photo Credits: Daily Mail

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