Displaying items by tag: Brunei
Stoning to death and amputation as punishments - including for children - are provided for in newly-implemented sections of the Brunei Darussalam sharia penal code that came into force on 3 April, according to a discreet notice on the attorney general’s website. ‘To legalise such cruel and inhuman penalties is appalling of itself. Some of the potential “offences” should not even be deemed crimes at all, including consensual sex between adults of the same gender’,said a researcher at Amnesty International. These abusive provisions received widespread condemnation when first discussed five years ago. Amnesty expressed grave concerns: ‘This penal code is a deeply flawed piece of legislation containing a range of provisions that violate human rights. As well as imposing cruel, inhuman and degrading punishments, it blatantly restricts the rights to freedom of expression, religion, and belief, and codifies discrimination against women and girls.’
In a population of 430,000 only 5.2% are Christian; everyone else is a Sunni Muslim. Churches in Malaysian territories bordering Brunei have been bold in their evangelism directed at Bruneians who come across the border for work or leisure. Some have reported numerous conversations with Bruneians who seem hungry and seeking for spiritual truth. Pray that these conversations will linger in their minds, and that the Holy Spirit will bring revelation and understanding of spiritual truths. May He make many inquisitive to know more about Jesus. There are many agencies and churches looking for additional staff to help them in their mission and calling in Brunei, where Muslim leaders have influence over the Sultan - the ultimate protector and defender of Islam. This results in Christian marginalisation. Neighbours of Christians only need to report them to authorities to hinder the practice of Christianity. See also https://windowreporter.com/prayer-points-day?day=20
Brunei is a sovereign state located on the north coast of the island of Borneo in southeast Asia. Apart from its South China Sea coastline, the country is completely surrounded by Malaysia. In 2014 the government announced the phased introduction of a penal code based on Sharia law, which will eventually include hudud penalties such as amputation and death by stoning and potentially the death penalty for apostasy. It is about to implement the next stage of this process. The Islamic Religious Council and Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah signed off the measure on 10 March. Implementation was delayed, but now appears to be going ahead, despite international pressure and criticism from Brunei citizens on social media. Christians comprise around ten percent of the population of the oil-rich state, where there are already tight restrictions on teaching Christianity. Pray for protection, spiritual maturity, and Biblical training for those leading the underground Church.