Malaysia wants sharia law to punish LGBTQ speech on social media

Tue. July 13, 2021 11:24 AM by Gerald Farinas

malaysian flag

photo credit // brian jeffery beggerly

Reaction to popularity of local posts celebrating Pride month this year

Malaysia, a majority Muslim nation in Asia, has tasked parliament to study and propose laws that would curb free speech of LGBTQ persons on social media. It already has laws against sex between men.

The proposed sharia laws are a reaction to the rise in local posts celebrating Pride month in June, according to a cabinet official.

"We found certain people uploaded statuses and graphics that insulted Islam on social media in their efforts to promote the [LGBTQ] lifestyle," deputy minister Marzuk Shaary told CNN.

The religious affairs cabinet minister also shared that he hopes the new laws will give enforcement powers—to indict Malaysian nationals who post pro-LGBTQ material on websites, social media, and apps.

If passed, these laws would allow police to detain Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook users in Malaysia for posting LGBTQ content.

The already enforced punishment for sex between men are public canings and fines. It is possible the proposed sharia laws would also propose the same punishments.