Rights activists in Indonesia stage protests as parliament bans sex outside marriage

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By Euronews  with Reuters, AFP
Activists protest in front of the parliament building in Jakarta, Indonesia, Tuesday 6 Dec 2022
Activists protest in front of the parliament building in Jakarta, Indonesia, Tuesday 6 Dec 2022   -   Copyright  Achmad Ibrahim/Copyright 2022 The AP. All rights reserved.

Rights activists in Indonesia held protests outside the country's parliament after it approved a new criminal code banning sex outside marriage -- with a punishment of up to one year in prison.

While the country already bans adultery, the new law - which passed with support from all political parties on Tuesday - would also include premarital sex. It would apply to Indonesians and foreigners alike, and prohibit cohabitation between unmarried couples.

Critics describe the move as a setback to the country's freedoms. It could also have a major impact on the LGBTQ community in Indonesia, where gay marriage is not allowed.

Legislators defended the passage of the criminal code, which was decades in the making, as a much-needed overhaul of colonial laws. 

The new laws won't come into effect for three years to allow for implementing regulations to be drafted.

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