Indonesia’s top Islamic body said Friday homosexuality is an abuse of human rights and demanded the government ban an ongoing gay and lesbian film festival. (yes, you have read correctly…).
It also condemned foreign cultural centres for showing the films at private screenings, three days after angry Muslims held protests outside the venues.
“We reject the screening of the films which contain gay and homosexual lives as they are against Islamic and Indonesian cultural values,” Indonesia Ulema Council (MUI) chairman Ma’ruf Amin said.
“The foreign representatives including the German and French cultural centres must show their respect for our sovereignty. They should not bring their culture which goes against our local values,” he said.
And some “hardliners” have come to suport this “body“. From AFP:
Dozens of Islamic hard-liners protested against an international gay film festival in Indonesia’s capital Tuesday, forcing the cancellation of several screenings.
The Q! Film Festival, being held at foreign cultural centres in Jakarta, opened last week and was slated to run until Wednesday night. In its ninth year, it aims to raise awareness of gay issues.
Members of the hardline Islamic Defenders Front — some wearing masks, white robes and turbans — chanted anti-gay slogans and said the movies were blasphemous.
Showings at the Goethe Institute of Germany, which was being guarded by police, would not be disrupted, said Dinyah Latuconsina, the centre’s program assistant.
But the French Cultural Center and Japan Foundation decided to halt remaining screenings.
Related: Study finds rising intolerance among Indonesian Muslims @ Jakarta Globe.
Al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden called for the creation of a new relief body to help Muslims in an audiotape released Friday, seeking to exploit discontent following this summer’s devastating floods in Pakistan by depicting the region’s governments as uncaring.
It was the third message in recent weeks from al-Qaida figures concerning the massive floods that affected around 20 million people in Pakistan, signaling a concentrated campaign by the terror group to tap into anger over the flooding to rally support.
But while the earlier messages by subordinates were angry, urging followers to rise up, bin Laden took a softer, even humanitarian tone – apparently trying to broaden al-Qaida’s appeal by presenting his group as a problem-solving protector of the poor.
“What governments spend on relief work is secondary to what they spend on armies,” bin Laden says on the 11-minute tape titled “Reflections on the Method of Relief Work.”
“If governments spent (on relief) only one percent of what is spent on armies, they would change the face of the world for poor people,” he said.
Interesting. Will AQ leader give the money he spents on terrorism to “the poor of the world“? I guess not. If he wouldn’t have “listened to Allah’s calling”, he will be living amid luxury as all the others Saudi multi-millionaires. He’s just exploiting (again) Western leaders’ culpability complex.