Target: Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah
Goal: Immediately negate a new Penal Code that violates basic human rights in Brunei
The government of Brunei should immediately revisit its new Penal Code, which will allow for multiple violations of human rights and provoke acts of violence. The Code will come into effect at the beginning of May, and will allow for punishments such as stoning to death, whipping, and amputation. Brunei’s new code of laws is a violation of the country’s human rights obligations under international law, and must be revoked immediately. Failure to do so would send a strong negative message about the country’s commitment to preserving its citizens human rights.
In addition, the new law would allow the death penalty to be imposed on crimes such as robbery. Those convicted of a crime who are under the age of 18 will also be able to be sentenced to death. The Penal Code makes extramarital sex illegal, as well as consensual sex between people of the same gender. This will undoubtedly lead to acts of violence against the LGBT community in Brunei by the security forces or even fellow citizens.
The human rights record of Brunei is to be reviewed by the United Nations Human Rights Council the day after the code goes into effect. The international community must act swiftly to force the government to reconsider this brash decision to enact these new laws. If changes are not made, sanctions should be set in place in order to ensure the protection of human rights for all the citizens of Brunei.
Dear Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah,
The recent decision to revise the Penal Code in Brunei is an abomination. The new Penal Code is in violation of numerous international human rights treaties to which your government is a party. I ask that you immediately revoke these changes and set a new code of laws that will honor your human rights commitments.
The sections of the law that make consensual sexual relations between members of the same sex illegal will lead to vigilante justice against members of the LGBT community. Your government cannot condone violence against people who are practicing their basic human rights. I ask that you act quickly in order to prevent violence and bring your country into line with international human rights law.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Presidential Press and Information Office via Wikipedia Commons