Brunei will begin stoning gays and adulterers to death starting next week, after the tiny nation on the island of Borneo converted to sharia law in 2014.
While the new laws were announced five years ago and gradually phased in by the country's sultan, Hassanal Bolkiah - who is also the prime minister, the death penalty for homsexual sex and adultery will begin on April 3, according to CNN. Brunei's roughly 450,000 residents were notified of the April 3 start date after the country's attorney general posted a December 29 notification on his website.
Human rights groups are horrified.
"Brunei must immediately halt its plans to implement these vicious punishments, and revise its Penal Code in compliance with its human rights obligations. The international community must urgently condemn Brunei's move to put these cruel penalties into practice," said Amnesty International Brunei specialist Rachel Chhoa-Howard in a statement.
Brunei became the first country in the region to adopt sharia law, and Islamic legal system known for its strict corporal punishments.
Here's a map of mostly Islamic republics where homosexual acts are illegal and/or punishable by death.
Via the Washington Post:
Places where homosexual acts can be punished by death
The Afghan Penal Code does not refer to homosexual acts, but Article 130 of the Constitution allows recourse to be made to Sharia law, which prohibits same-sex sexual activity in general. Afghanistan’s Sharia law criminalizes same-sex sexual acts with a maximum of the death penalty. No known cases of death sentences have been meted out since the end of Taliban rule.
In accordance with sharia law, homosexual intercourse between men can be punished by death, and men can be flogged for lesser acts such as kissing. Women may be flogged.
Federal law classifies homosexual behavior as a felony punishable by imprisonment, but several states have adopted sharia law and imposed a death penalty for men. A law signed in early January makes it illegal for gay people countrywide to hold a meeting or form clubs.
Sharia law in Qatar applies only to Muslims, who can be put to death for extramarital sex, regardless of sexual orientation.
Under the country’s interpretation of sharia law, a married man engaging in sodomy or any non-Muslim who commits sodomy with a Muslim can be stoned to death. All sex outside of marriage is illegal.
The penal code stipulates prison, but in some southern regions, Islamic courts have imposed Sharia law and the death penalty.
Three-time offenders under the sodomy law can be put to death; first and second convictions result in flogging and imprisonment. Southern parts of the country have adopted more lenient laws.
According to 1994 penal code, married men can be sentenced to death by stoning for homosexual intercourse. Unmarried men face whipping or one year in prison. Women face up to seven years in prison.
Muslim men engaging in homosexual sex can be stoned to death, according to a 1984 law, though none have been executed so far. Women face prison.
United Arab Emirates
Lawyers in the country and other experts disagree on whether federal law prescribes the death penalty for consensual homosexual sex or only for rape. In a recent Amnesty International report, the organization said it was not aware of any death sentences for homosexual acts. All sexual acts outside of marriage are banned.
And now we can add Brunei.
There are 65 countries where homosexual acts are illegal
Death penalty laws exist but are unlikely to be implemented, according to the 2016 IGLA report.
A 2014 law makes same-sex relations a crime punishable by 15 to 20 years in prison.
A ban on same-sex relationships was tossed by the legal system in 2009 but reinstated in 2013. The supreme court said the government, not the courts, would have to change the law.