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Controversial edicts gain prominence
On December 1, the Terengganu government passed four new sections under the Syariah Criminal Offences (Takzir) (Terengganu) Enactment 2001, outlawing witchcraft and shamanism, ‘females posing as males’, females conceiving or giving birth to a child out of wedlock and sodomy.
Section 29A states that Muslim women deemed guilty of outofwedlock pregnancy and childbirth will be liable to a fine not exceeding RM3,000, imprisonment up to two years, or both.
The same section states that men who are found guilty of causing a pregnancy out of wedlock can be sentenced with the same punishment.
The new provisions can be implemented once they receive the assent of the Terengganu ruler.
Malaysia’s Minister of Religious Affairs has sought an audience with the Trengganu ruler to be briefed on this matter and for greater clarity as he faces mounting pressure from social activists.
Sisters in Islam and Justice for Sisters urged the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia or Suhakam to conduct a human rights impact assessment of the edicts.
They stressed as the nation is a party to the global Convention on Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women and the Convention on the Rights of the Child, Malaysia holds an obligation to eliminate all forms of discrimination against women and children.
-THE MALAYSIA VOICE