Sovereign and independent

About Brunei

A harsh new criminal law in Brunei — which includes death by stoning for sex between men or for adultery, and amputation of limbs for theft — went into effect on Wednesday, despite an international outcry from other countries, rights groups, celebrities and students.

In other words, Shariah, of the most inflexible kind.

The sultan, 72, is also the prime minister and holds several other titles. He first introduced the draconian version of Shariah in 2013, as part of a long-term project to impose a restrictive form of Islam on his country, which is majority Muslim.

It’s nice to have projects, but that’s not a good one.

International protest delayed its implementation at the time, but in deciding recently to put the law into effect, with some revisions, Brunei has stood defiant.

Brunei “is a sovereign Islamic and fully independent country and, like all other independent countries, enforces its own rule of laws,” the prime minister’s office said in a statement on Saturday.

Meh. Sovereign and independent aren’t the issue. The US is sovereign and independent too, but we put way too many people in prison, for way too long, for way too little reason. Oh, also, a very disproportionate number of them are descendants of slaves, another little blot on our sovereign and independent record.

Beginning on Wednesday, extramarital sex, anal sex, and abortion are to be punished by death by stoning. The death penalty will also be required for some other offenses, including rape and some forms of blasphemy or heresy, like ridiculing the Quran or insulting the Prophet Muhammad.

The law requires amputation of a hand or foot for some crimes, and whipping for others. The punishment for lesbian sex, previously imprisonment and a fine, is now to be 40 lashes.

Nasty god they bow to.

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