Christian men publicly flogged for drinking alcohol and gambling in Indonesia’s Aceh

Christian men publicly flogged for drinking alcohol and gambling in Indonesia’s Aceh

February 13, 2021 0 By WFTV

Two Christian men were publicly flogged last week in Indonesia’s ultra-conservative Aceh province in a rare case involving non-Muslims.

They were caught drinking alcohol and gambling. 

The two accused received 40 lashes each from a masked sharia officer. They were beaten in their backs with a stick.

One of the accused says he chose flogging because he did not want to be prosecuted in a criminal case that could have seen him jailed for up to six months.

AFP reports there have been several instances over the past few years where non-Muslims were whipped for committing adultery or consuming alcohol. 

These fall under the Shariah Laws in Aceh where the application of Islamic laws is strict.

In 2018, the Daily Mail reported two Christians in Indonesia were publicly whipped for playing a children’s entertainment game that allegedly violates Islamic law.

The Daily Mail report says the pair were arrested for playing a game at a children’s entertainment complex that lets users exchange coins for prizes or vouchers, including cash.

However, the recent flogging has drawn criticism from outside and inside the country.

The Independent UK report quoting Andreas Harsono, an Indonesian researcher at Human Rights Watch, says flogging is a cruel and inhumane form of punishment. 

“Flogging people is a brutal and particularly barbaric practice, no matter who carries out the punishment,” Harsono says.

The caning comes less than two weeks after a male couple were flogged nearly 80 times each for having gay sex.

The two Christians were not the only ones flogged on that day. There were five other people who received the same treatment.

They were Muslims who were whipped for adultery and drinking alcohol which is violations of religious law in Aceh, the only province in Indonesia that imposes Islamic law.