Wildan Noviansah, Jakarta – Information about a meeting of all-ASEAN Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) activists in Jakarta this month has caused a commotion. The police are moving to check the truth of the news.
The news was earlier revealed on a social media account in a posting that has since been deleted. It said that the event would be held on July 17-21 in Jakarta, although the exact location is unknown.
Metro Jaya Regional Police (Polda) Intelligence and Security Director (Dirintelkam) Senior Commissioner Hirbak Wahyu Setiawan said that so far they have yet to receive a request to organise such an event in Jakarta. The police are still trying to find out if the information circulating about the event is true.
"Yes, so far no one has submitted [a request for a] permit and there hasn't being any notification either. Polda is trying to find out also, is it true or not, is it true that it will be in Jakarta or not", said Setiawan when contacted by journalists on Tuesday July 11.
Setiawan said that police are still seeking information on the matter. He also asked members of the public who have information on the all-ASEAN LGBT gathering to immediately report it to police.
"Yes, we currently trying to find out if it's true or not. We've checked the hotels too but it's not there, all of the events at hotels also, it isn't being held at any other places either", he said.
MUI opposes event
Contacted separately, Anwar Abbas, the deputy chairperson of Indonesia's peak Islamic body the Indonesian Ulama Council (MUI), has also spoken up about the information. Abbas is asking the government not to give a permit for the organisation of the event.
"[We] warn and appeal to the government not to allow or give a permit for the organisation of this event", said Abbas.
Abbas added that if the meeting is allowed, the government would be violating existing regulations. He also believes that holding such an event conflicts with religious values.
"If it is true that all-ASEAN LGBT activists will hold a meeting in Jakarta, and it is allowed by the government, then it means that the government will be violating the provisions stipulated by the Constitution, primarily Article 29 Paragraph 1 of the 1945 Constitution which states that the country is based on Belief in the Almighty God", he said.
"Therefore, as a consequence of the logic of this article, the government is not allowed to issue a permit for an activity that is held in this country that conflicts with the values of religious teachings, moreover of the six religious that are acknowledged in this country, namely Islam, Christianity, Catholicism, Hinduism, Buddhism and Confucianism, there is not one of these religions that tolerates LGBT practices", he said in conclusion. (wnv/eva)
[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "Geger Agenda Pertemuan Aktivis LGBT Se-ASEAN di Jakarta, Polda Metro Selidiki".]