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LGBTQ Supporters Arrested In Malaysia

By Charlotte Robinson, July 31, 2023

Over the weekend in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia eight members of Ahmadi Religion of Peace & Light were arrested during a protest in solidarity with our LGBTQ community. Their protest outside the downtown Sogo shopping mall on Saturday July 29th was prompted by the recent public caning of two alleged lesbians & other crackdowns on our LGBTQ community in Malaysia. The Ahmadis were arrested & are being detained at Dang Wangi police headquarters without access to lawyers or families. Hadil El-Khouly, the Human Rights Outreach Coordinator of the Ahmadi Religion of Peace & Light UK stated, “They have been detained for over 24 hours for protesting in support of LGBT+ human rights. They are now awaiting a court order to charge them. During detention, they were interrogated by police about their religious beliefs. This protest was a response by believers from the Ahmadi Religion of Peace & Light to the persecution of the LGBTQ+ community by the Malaysian government, which has escalated recently. We do not support the oppression of LGBTQ+ people. Our doors are open to everyone. We have many members of the LGBTQ+ community. Some of them have been jailed in Turkey, Iran & Egypt.” London-based human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell who has supported Malaysian human rights campaigns & the rights of Ahmadi Muslims for many decades concluded, “This is a laudable brave example of one persecuted minority supporting another. Ahmadis are an oppressed religious minority in Malaysia. Unlike mainstream Muslims, the Ahmadi Religion of Peace & Light accepts LGBT+ people & supports their human rights. What they did was very courageous. I fear they will pay a heavy price under Malaysia’s draconian anti-protest laws.” I talked to Peter in this exclusive podcast about global LGBTQ rights in 2018. LISTEN   

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