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Judicial CP - February 2006

Corpun file 17411

Xinhua News Agency, China, 14 February 2006

Six get cane punishment in Indonesia's Aceh

JAKARTA, Feb. 14 (Xinhuanet) -- Six people including three women got up to six strokes of the cane Tuesday in Indonesia's predominantly Muslim province of Aceh for gambling conviction.

TV footage showed the female convicts dressing in white Muslim cloak were led one by one to an open podium for their punishment.

One girl was freed from the punishment because she was too young to receive the strokes, reported Metro TV news.

Audience shouted to help the executioner count the humiliating strokes as the convicts were grimacing in pain.

The government last June agreed the caning punishment in Aceh as the implementation of sharia (Islamic) laws as part of greater autonomy package for once rebellious province on the northern tip of Sumatra island.

The caning is applicable to those who "propagated beliefs other than Islam to Muslims in the province" and is aimed at upholding strict Islamic law.

A Muslim who skips Friday prayers three times in a row without an acceptable reason would get three strokes of the cane and food stall owners who sell food, beverages or cigarettes publicly or secretly during the Muslim fasting month would receive five strokes of the cane.

Aceh has adopted an Islamic tribunal system since late 2003.

Copyright 2003 Xinhua News Agency. All rights reserved.

Corpun file 17374

Jakarta Post, 20 February 2006

Gambler gets caned in Banda Aceh

BANDA ACEH, Aceh: A convicted gambler from North Sumatra was caned in front of hundreds of spectators Friday in Banda Aceh.

The convicted gambler, identified as Syafaruddin Nasution, 35, was lashed 10 times with a bamboo cane after Friday prayers outside the Ateuk Pahlawan Mosque in the Baiturrahman district.

Prosecutor Hermansyah said that Syafaruddin Nasution was caught gambling with four other cohorts Dec. 23. "But Syafaruddin was the only one sentenced to that punishment because the four others were non-Muslim," he said.

It was the fifth such case since sharia law was implemented three years ago in the province.

Also in attendance to see the man caned was Banda Aceh Mayor Gazali Yusuf, who called on non-governmental organization (NGO) workers and pendatang (newcomers) to respect sharia law, saying that only one of 18 caned convicts was born and raised in Banda Aceh.

"Alhamdullilah (Praise be to Allah), it means the people of Banda Aceh respect the sharia," he said.

The sharia law was imposed in 2003 as part of an autonomy package authorized by the central government in an attempt to quash separatism.

According to the law, flogging may be used to punish various crimes ranging from fraud, adultery and use of alcohol to gambling and "intimacy" between unmarried couples. -- JP

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