NextSharkNextShark.com
Latest Newsletter🍵 Monterey Park hero awardedRead

Article

Foreign tourists can still have sex outside marriage in Bali, governor says

via Hanging Gardens of Bali, Ubud, Pixabay
  • Foreigners visiting Bali will not be affected by Indonesia’s new law against extramarital sex, according to officials.

  • Last week, the country’s parliament passed legislation that punishes offenders with up to a year in prison.

  • Bali Gov. Wayan Koster said the province will remain “as usual” and advised against “misleading statements” regarding the new criminal code.

  • He also assured that there will be “no checks on marital statuses at tourist accommodations like hotels, villas, guest houses or spas, or inspections by public officials or community groups.”

  • Aside from banning sex out of wedlock, the new law also contains provisions against insulting the president and state institutions.

  • The law still needs to be signed by President Joko Widodo and will not come into effect for three years.

Asian America Daily - in under 5 minutes

Get our collection of Asian America's most essential stories, to your inbox daily, for free!

Unsure? Check out our Newsletter Archive

Foreigners visiting Bali will not be affected by Indonesia’s new law against extramarital sex, officials said.

The legislation, which was passed by the country’s parliament last week, punishes offenders with up to a year in prison. Those who cohabitate outside marriage may receive six months.

The law was previously reported to affect both citizens and foreigners. However, Bali — the country’s top tourist destination — will remain the way it is, according to its governor.

“Bali is (business) as usual — comfortable and safe to visit,” Gov. Wayan Koster said, as per CNN. “We look forward to welcoming visitors with our Balinese hospitality and advise all parties not to deliver misleading statements regarding the Indonesian criminal code that might disrupt Bali tourism.”

Indonesia is the world’s most populous Muslim-majority country. Bali, however, is predominantly Hindu, according to Al Jazeera.

Koster’s assurance follows an earlier clarification from Indonesia’s justice ministry, which stressed that foreigners “did not have to worry” about persecution. According to the governor, there will be “no checks on marital statuses at tourist accommodations like hotels, villas, guest houses or spas, or inspections by public officials or community groups.”

The new code, however, also includes provisions against insulting the president and state institutions. Civil rights groups have been airing concerns on possible misinterpretations of such provisions.

“There are least [sic] 88 articles containing broad provisions that could be misused and misinterpreted by both authorities and the public to criminalize those who peacefully express their opinions or exercise their rights to peaceful assembly and association,” Nurina Savitri, a campaign manager at Amnesty International Indonesia, told The Guardian. Among them is a provision that criminalizes “unsanctioned public demonstrations,” which could be used to ban peaceful assembly, she said.

Indonesia’s foreign ministry has reportedly summoned a United Nations official amid such concerns. However, a spokesperson said the organization should have consulted the government before expressing its misgivings.

“They should have come to consult, just like other international representatives. We hope they do not hasten to express views, or when there’s not enough information,” said Teuku Faizasyah, according to the South China Morning Post.

The new law still needs the seal of President Joko Widodo and will not come into effect for three years.

Support our Journalism with a Contribution

Many people might not know this, but despite our large and loyal following which we are immensely grateful for, NextShark is still a small bootstrapped startup that runs on no outside funding or loans.

Everything you see today is built on the backs of warriors who have sacrificed opportunities to help give Asians all over the world a bigger voice.

However, we still face many trials and tribulations in our industry, from figuring out the most sustainable business model for independent media companies to facing the current COVID-19 pandemic decimating advertising revenues across the board.

We hope you consider making a contribution so we can continue to provide you with quality content that informs, educates and inspires the Asian community. Even a $1 contribution goes a long way.  Thank you for everyone's support. We love you all and can't appreciate you guys enough.

Support NextShark

Mastercard, Visa, Amex, Discover, Paypal