Indonesia

Indonesia Set to Ban Women From Straddling Motorbikes

Islamic law pressing ahead despite opposition

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Authorities in Indonesia's Aceh province are pressing ahead with a proposed Islamic law that would ban female passengers from straddling motorbikes despite reported opposition from the central government.

Aceh introduced a version of Shariah, or Islamic law, in 2009, after it gained autonomy from the government in a 2005 peace deal to end a long-running separatist war there. The Aceh laws regulate women's dress and public morality, require shops and other places to close at prayer time, and are enforced by a special unit. Punishments can include public caning.