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Women cyclist in Aceh detained, given religious guidance over 'sexy clothes'

Kompas.com - July 7, 2020

Raja Umar, Banda Aceh – Pictures of a group of women cyclists wearing tight clothing and no headscarfs riding around the Acehnese provincial capital of Banda Aceh has gone viral on social media.

The photos and videos of the women wearing sexy pink tops invited criticism from netizens.

Meanwhile Banda Aceh Mayor Aminullah Usman was infuriated and immediately ordered Public Order Agency (Satpol PP) officials and the Wilayatul Hisbah (WH, religious police) to arrest the group for not wearing clothing in accordance with the qanun (bylaw) on syariat Islam (Islamic law) which is in force in Aceh.

"This city enforces syariat Islam, anyone who comes here must respect and obey the regulations which exist in this city", said Usman as quoted by Kompas.com from the official Banda Aceh municipal government website on Monday July 6.

Usman ordered the Satpol PP and the WH to immediately arrest the group of women who cycled around Banda Aceh on Sunday July 5 and for them to be given guidance.

"The Satpol PP and WH are looking for them, [they'll] be summoned and given guidance", said Usman.

Usman said that everyone in Banda Aceh must respect the values of syariat Islam. Even visitors from non-Muslim groups, said Usman, must respect the norms which exist in Aceh.

Already secured

Meanwhile Banda Aceh municipal government public relations division head. Irwan, confirmed to journalists that the group of women cyclists were taken to the Satpol PP-WH offices for questioning and to be given guidance.

"Earlier they were questioned at the Satpol PP-WH offices about why they wore clothing which violates the values of syariat Islam, then they were given guidance by an ustaz [Islamic teacher]", he said.

After undergoing guidance at the Satpol PP-WH offices, the 10 or so women were allowed to return to their respective homes after signing a statement of apology and promising not to repeat the offence.

"Earlier after they were given guidance and signed a statement of apology and promised not to do it again they were allowed to go home, there were 10 people who were given guidance including those who arrived earlier", said Irwan.

[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "10 Perempuan Berbaju Ketat Gowes Keliling Aceh, Wali Kota Marah".]

Source: https://regional.kompas.com/read/2020/07/07/05150001/10-perempuan-berbaju-ketat-gowes-keliling-aceh-wali-kota-marah