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1 Feb 2016

LGBT still under threat in Malaysia

A report by Human Rights Watch reveals that Malaysia's human rights situation deteriorated sharply during 2015

Human Rights Watch (HRW) has revealed in its World Report 2016 that the Malaysian government increased its campaign of harassment and repression against activists, political opposition figures, and the media last year.

The report highlights that the rights of LGBT people remain under threat in the country.

The report notes that in October a decision by the Federal Court to uphold an anti-transgender state law that prohibits "a male person posing as a woman" was a major dent on human rights.

The report also flags an attack by two men on LGBT rights defender Nisha Ayub outside her apartment in September. The police have failed to bring the culprits to justice.

Phil Roberts, deputy Asia director, summed up the situation in Malaysia by saying: “Prime Minister Najib Razak is trampling on fundamental rights to hush up corruption allegations and maintain his grip on power.”

Reader's Comments

1. 2016-02-01 17:20  
Funny how this article is concurrently placed with a Malaysian tourism campaign in Fridae's website as a wallpaper. lol
2. 2016-02-01 17:51    
NeoEros, you are right, it looks funny but we, at Fridae, are trying to highlight Malaysia as a destination for tourism, just to push the trend in this sad situation and help the change occur!
3. 2016-02-02 02:40  
Court and police failings are directly related to the government?

4. 2016-02-02 15:09  
With respect @NeoEros, it is actually disgraceful that a site like fridae geared specifically to the LGBT community accepts an ad from one of the most repressive governments in the region and a country where it is still against the law to indulge in homosexual practices. Further it has trumped up charges of sodomy against its former Deputy Prime Minster who has been jailed several times to ensure the party which has ruled since independence stays in power, however corrupt to may be.

Let's recall that the corruption allegations are spreading like wildfire with Switzerland being the latest country to state "billions of dollars" have been stolen from Malaysian state-owned enterprises, according to today's issue of The Guardian newspaper.

LGBT tourists are NOT welcomed in Malaysia. The effect of anti-LGBT legislation even extends of movies. Here is what the Huffington Post wrote three months ago -

"Walk into any theater in Malaysia screening a movie with a gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender character, and you can expect to watch a similar plot unfold: All LGBT characters will "die or repent” by the end of the film.

In a move that was considered to be an improvement, the Malaysian government’s Film Censorship Board issued a controversial guideline change in 2010.

I leave the last word to the country's embattled Prime Minister -

"Earlier this year, Razak compared the LGBT community to the Islamic State terror group. Both, he said, are enemies of Islam."

So, every member of this site is part of a terror group! Kill that advertisement, fridae. It is a disgrace to our community!! If not, please explain to members how it falls under your stated mission, ""Empower Gay Asia!"
Comment edited on 2016-02-02 15:13:14
5. 2016-02-02 15:51  
Vibrant has a lot of meanings :)

Maybe fridae should clarify the position
6. 2016-02-02 20:42    
Thank you all for your comments and we appreciate you sharing your thoughts and your engagement on such an issue. We would like to clarify our intent with the "Out in Malaysia Campaign" and the article that was published:

- First of all "Out in Malaysia" is a NON-SPONSORED special feature that we decided to run as a way to support the local Malaysian LGBT Community.

- This campaign is intended to shed a positive light on the LGBT Community and its power, in order to increase pressure on local and national governments and help them see the potential benefits of welcoming the community, tourists and locals alike. It presents an opportunity for local businesses to show their support to the LGBT community in the face of intolerance.

- Fridae.asia has purposefully published the above article at the beginning of this campaign as our aim is to help highlight the issues facing LGBTs in Malaysia.

We will be running special features in various other countries across Asia including in others, like Malaysia, where homosexuality is neither legal, nor accepted.

Thank you all again and fridae.asia´s philosophy is that change can be brought about in a positive and constructive way.
7. 2016-02-03 02:36  
I find fridae's explanation quite inexplicable (sic). How does advertising Malaysia as "The Vibrant Gay Destination of Asia" help shed any light whatever on the local LGBT community, positive or otherwise? It doesn't, with respect. There are very rigid laws and customs in Malaysia that totally negate that message.

In any case, the message is targeted specifically at tourists. There is nothing in it referring to the local LGBT community. It merely gives a very false impression that Malaysia is a gay destination. It is NOT! And I fear that some readers may consider that it is as easy to be gay there as it is in some other parts of Asia - and then get into a lot of personal trouble during their vacations, trouble for themselves and perhaps a Malay with whom they have sexual relations. With sharia law in force in some Malay states, that could have horrendous consequences! What sort of help is that to the local LGBT community?

If you wish to help that community, place your article in banner headlines for all to see and reduce the "vibrant" misleading message in the News section!
Comment edited on 2016-02-03 02:58:41
Comment #8 was deleted by its author on 2016-02-03 02:49
9. 2016-02-03 04:49  
So you moved this off the homepage ....why?

More thinking before acting please.
10. 2016-02-03 13:07  
If someone is paying you to promote Malaysia or this is just a case of doing before thinking as suggested by @GTiLad, then all you need do is delete two words - "Out" and "Gay". Far better, though, not to accept any funding from Malaysia and instead be accurate: have as your banner headline the one you use for this article "LGBT still under threat in Malaysia".

You state the above article balances the present headline. That is just nonsense! Within a few days this article will disappear into those in the other 384 pages of news items and no-one will see it. Will you then take down the Malaysian ad at the top?

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 ILGA Asia - Fridae partner for LGBT rights in Asia IGLHRC - Fridae Partner for LGBT rights in Asia