Gay Indonesian Men Publicly Caned 83 Times For Having Sex

Two Indonesian men have each been caned 83 times for gay sex in the Indonesian province of Aceh.

The canings were administered on a stage at a public ceremony in the capital of Banda Aceh as onlookers cheered, the BBC reported.

The men, aged 20 and 23, were sentenced earlier this month after a group of neighbours broke down the door of their home and found them in bed together in early April.

Confronting video footage online showed the vigilantes beating and insulting the pair as they plead with their accusers not to report them to police.

Homosexuality is not illegal in most of Indonesia, but in 2014 the Aceh province implemented their own strict Islamic laws and according to local activists, the pair are the first gay people to be sentenced to caning.

Human rights group Amnesty International condemned the punishment as “an outrageous act of cruelty” and called on authorities to “immediately repeal the law” which imposes the practice.

“This sickening spectacle, carried out in front of more than a thousand jeering spectators, is an act of utmost cruelty,” Amnesty’s South-East Asia deputy director Josef Benedict said.

“These two men had their privacy forcefully invaded when they were ambushed inside their own home, and their ‘punishment’ today was designed to humiliate as well as physically injure them.”

A day earlier, Indonesian police said they had raided a gay sauna in capital city Jakarta and detained 141 men for questioning, who could be charged for violating Indonesia’s strict anti-pornography laws.

Earlier this month, several men were arrested by police after police raided a “gay party” in a hotel room in Surabaya.