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IWD protest in Jakarta highlights anti-women policies, discriminative bylaws

Tribune News - March 8, 2016

Lendy Ramadhan, Jakarta – Scores of women calling themselves Women's Solidarity (Solidaritas Perempuan) held a protest action in front of the State Palace in Central Jakarta on Tuesday March 8 to commemorate International Women's Day (IWD) 2016.

A representative of the demonstrators named Zakia explained that current government polices do not side with women and instead tend to discriminate against women. She gave the example of the Qanun Jinayah, a criminal code based on Sharia law in Indonesia's northernmost province of Aceh that consistently paints women as bad.

"(We) demand that the government look at the state of Indonesian society, particularly women in Indonesia, it's [happening] in all regions, Makassar, Jakarta, Mataram, Sumbawa, Palu, Palembang, Lampung and so on, it's about their source of livelihood, with policies that should side with the interests of women", she said.

Zakia explained that current policies on resources, fishing communities, [women's] bodies and discriminative bylaws in Aceh do not side with women. For example, the Qanun Jinayah in Aceh which severely discriminates against women.

"How is it that women aren't allowed to sit astride [a motorcycle], how is it that if a women is raped the perpetrator just utters an oath four times and is free, how is it that women must wear a jilbab [Islamic headscarf], in all of this women are deemed to be criminals", she said.

Brandishing a pamphlet containing their demands, the protesters held a long-march from the Horse Statue in Central Jakarta to the nearby State Palace. The group hopes that the government will hear and then agree to their demands.

[Translated by James Balowski for the Indoleft News Service. The original title of the report was Solidaritas Perempuan: Qanun Jinayah Diskriminatif.]

Source: http://www.tribunnews.com/nasional/2016/03/08/solidaritas-perempuan-qanun-jinayah-diskriminatif.

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