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Clear what is driving Brunei

Opinion Piece

As reported internationaly, the Sultan of Brunei has announced that after April 3, the penalty for adultery and homosexuality will be death by stoning.

“The (Sharia) law, apart from criminalising and deterring acts that are against the teachings of Islam, also aims to educate, respect and protect the legitimate rights of all individuals, society or nationality of any faiths and race,” said a statement from the office of the Sultan.

There was worldwide condemnation. In a tweet, Helen Clark had this to say:

“Shocking news from Brunei, where new penal code provides for death by stoning as punishment for gay sex. Hard to comprehend what could be driving such a barbaric move which stands in stark opposition to fundamental human rights principles.”

So, Ms Clark finds it “hard to comprehend what could be driving such a barbaric move”, in spite of the fact that the Sultan himself made it clear in his public statement that it was the interpretation of Islamic (Sharia) law.

If Ms Clark hasn’t the stomach to publicly acknowledge what’s driving it, she’s either breathtakingly ignorant or wilfully bowing to an unwritten rule that one must not criticise Islam.

Martin Hanson, Nelson