Brunei boycott building steam

The backlash over Brunei’s harsh new laws involving death penalties for same sex acts.

Brunei boycott building steam

A British same sex couple was told to act straight or suffer the consequences.

That’s the state of affairs when planes have to stopover in Brunei after the country’s new laws punish homosexuality and adultery with the death penalty. Lesbian sex carries 40 strokes of the cane as well as jail-time.

Among other new laws introduced last month, sodomy, adultery and rape are now punishable by death-by-stoning in the Nation of Brunei, a country located on the north coast of the island of Borneo in Southeast Asia.

When the couple found out about the proposed laws, they contacted Smartraveller for advice.

They were allegedly told that “so long as you act heterosexual, you should be fine.”

Were they willing to take that risk? Would you? When asked about the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s (DFAT) response, a spokesperson told Travel Weekly: “We respect the privacy of our consular clients, and encourage the complainant to share their concerns directly with the department.”

No further comment was issued, but Smartraveller has since updated its travel advice for LGBTI travellers travelling overseas, with links to country-specific travel advisories and the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association.

Brunei’s harsh laws have caused quite a ruckus in the travel industry, with Virgin ending its staff leisure travel agreement with Brunei’s national carrier, Royal Brunei Airlines.

“Given the harsh (including death) penalties being introduced for activity that is legal and acceptable in Australia, the myID agreement between Virgin Australia and Royal Brunei has now been terminated effective immediately,” stated an email sent to Virgin staff.

The agreement covered employee leisure travel benefits only, and Virgin does not sell seats on Royal Brunei.

“Under a separate interline ticketing agreement, Royal Brunei sells seats available on Virgin Australia aircraft for select routes within Australia,” the spokesperson said.

“There is no change to this particular agreement.”

Princess Cruises has called off two port visits.

“Princess Cruises is aware of the news stories circulating about the country of Brunei and the discriminatory views of the country leader towards the LGBTQ community,” stated the the cruise line.

“Although we have no calls to Brunei in 2019, we are looking at one itinerary in May 2020 and another in January 2021 that currently include a port call to Brunei, with the intention to make changes to those itineraries.

“At Princess Cruises we celebrate diversity and equality and would avoid any location where any guests are not treated with dignity and respect,” said a Princess Cruises’ spokesperson.

Global travel agency STA Travel has also stopped selling Royal Brunei Airlines’ flights worldwide. Flight Centre also said it “vehemently opposes” Brunei’s move.

You may have also heard Ellen DeGeneres, Elton John and George Clooney calling for a boycott of all hotels owned by Brunei Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah’s investment company. As a result, many luxury hotels, across the US and Europe, including legacy institutions such as Beverly Hills Hotel and London’s The Dorchester in Paris’ Plaza Athenee, have had to shut down their social media channels.

United Nations high commissioner for human rights, Michelle Bachelet, has condemned Brunei’s proposal, describing the revisions as “draconian”, maintaining that they “would enshrine in legislation cruel and inhuman punishments that seriously breach international human rights law”.

The Federal Government has been called on to ban Royal Brunei from Australia.

“This is an issue which the government … have taken up with the government of Brunei. We are strong supporters of human rights right across this region and more broadly, including in Brunei,” said Minister for Foreign Affairs Marise Payne.

“We are absolute opponents of the death penalty in all circumstances, so any suggestion that laws would facilitate the application of the death penalty is a matter of concern to Australia.”

“These are communications we will continue to have with our counterparts. I conveyed our views as recently, again, as last week to Erywan, to the Foreign Minister of Brunei, and we will continue to do so. They are matters of some human rights concern.”

Brunei is not the only country in the world where same sex relationships are punishable by death. There are many countries that also outlaw lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people, including tourists.

The death penalty applies for homosexuality in Afghanistan, Iran, Mauritania (only Muslim men), Sudan, Nigeria, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Qatar (only Muslims), Somalia and Brunei. In dozens of others, homosexuality can result in jail time.

However, Brunei is the only country in the world with execution laws in place for LGBTIQ people that maintains landing rights in Australia.

A Smartraveller spokesperson told YourLifeChoices that anyone travelling on a Royal Brunei flight is subject to the laws of Brunei and could be transported to Brunei to be dealt with under that nation's laws.

Without knowing about these new laws, Brunei would seem to be the perfect destination.

One look at the latest Brunei Tourism video and you’d be forgiven for booking a ticket there. Just make sure you act straight.

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    COMMENTS

    To make a comment, please register or login
    Jacka
    20th Apr 2019
    8:37am
    It looks like in a very short while we'll have a fantastic holiday destination with six star service and accommodation with all the trimmings at a very reasonable price. Thank you to the homosexuals of the world. I was wondering when they would finally be of some purpose on this earth. The Christian world applaud you. Cheers Jacka.
    Rod63
    20th Apr 2019
    9:39am
    Well you're clearly not a Christian, making such a hateful un-Christian comment so you shouldn't attempt to speak for Christians.
    Dabbydoos
    20th Apr 2019
    9:24am
    But how will we get there Jacko ?
    Rod63
    20th Apr 2019
    9:37am
    People should just not go there. Plenty of other beautiful places.
    pedro the swift
    20th Apr 2019
    10:58am
    Its not just homosexuals subject to their barbarian laws , Jacka. You could easily be caught out too. accused of stealing or public display of affection to your partner(female, I hope) and you could be jailed or worse. i suggest you fully check out their barbaric Sharia law.
    Drewbie
    20th Apr 2019
    12:32pm
    I most certainly don't agree with Sharia Law as it is the most repressive/oppressive system of national government any nation could suffer. However, that said, I believe the best & easiest method of enjoying a country while on holiday abroad, is to be well researched on what's acceptable behaviour, what isn't & act accordingly whilst there. Then you should have few bad experiences or worse, run ins with the local authorities.

    It's far better to be fore-armed regarding personal conduct before travelling internationally to some place you've never previously set foot in. It's quite arrogant, selfish & reprehensible that non-heterosexual folk expect & even demand that their " normal " behaviour be passed over/ignored in a Country they visit, where such conduct is no-brainer patently not accepted by its populace.
    Triss
    20th Apr 2019
    2:51pm
    But who decides in Brunei whether someone is gay or not, Drewbi? That’s the concern and in those countries, if you’re arrested for being gay, how do you prove you’re not?
    Jacka
    20th Apr 2019
    1:11pm
    Hey Rod63 and I imagine that refers to your IQ, read the Bible if you want to know about Christians and their beliefs. have a good day. God bless, Jacka.
    Digby
    20th Apr 2019
    2:02pm
    )nly people of very low IQ would interpret the bible in the way you do. Every utterance only diminishes you further so give it up, retard. Hell has a special place for vermin like you. But I would be glad if people like you and your oligoneuronal (look it up dummy) kind, went there to suffer punishments as there are many other things that are outlawed there.That would leave the rest of the earth to those gentle, peace loving, tolerant , kind and compassionate Christians.
    Digby
    20th Apr 2019
    2:14pm
    well said
    Jacka
    20th Apr 2019
    2:14pm
    Digby, I can see by your rant that you're quite the compassionate Christian, Digby, great name for homosexual. I would imagine you use the laundromat to wash your sheets after a night on the you know what, so everyone else can share your depravity in the wash. Once again,god bless, have a good day, I certainly will, Jacka
    Digby
    20th Apr 2019
    2:23pm
    Well said Jacka only people of your class and intelligence, need to use a laundromat. Jacka is a great name for a repressed homosexual who hates what he sees in himself, and is intellectually challenged by even simple concepts. You do seem to know a great deal about names for homosexuals. You do seem obsessed with sex , and what you view as dirt and depravity, speaks volumes about your mind like a sewer and level of intellectual sophistication. You are proving my point every utterance diminishes you further, and condemns you to the level of the haters who are hell bound.
    Alexia
    20th Apr 2019
    4:21pm
    Who in their right ind want to go to an Arab country?
    Not only they have ancient age laws but also have complete ignorance of the laws of equality between humans and some of the inhuman and cruel practices in the world.
    Isn't it a travesty that we welcome these people in our countries, where they can dress as they want to, practise any custom or religion they like and be served and catered to by their enemy?
    Rod63
    20th Apr 2019
    5:26pm
    But Brunei is not an Arab country, is it?
    OlderandWiser
    20th Apr 2019
    9:37pm
    No, Brunei is not an arab country, nowhere near it, it's in Asia lol
    Jacka
    20th Apr 2019
    4:55pm
    Sticks and stones Digby sticks and stones. Not very Christian and no denial of homosexuality, when do you turn the other cheek. To put it in Digby language Woof. Cheers all Jacka.
    Rod63
    20th Apr 2019
    5:30pm
    If you were Christian you wouldn't be so hateful, Christ demonstrated that we should love one another. Remember the great commandment? No? Research it.
    pedro the swift
    20th Apr 2019
    6:19pm
    indeed!, "love your fellow MAN" Don't think women were equal then either!
    Rod63
    20th Apr 2019
    8:27pm
    Pedro: Love one another as I have loved you.

    Nothing about "fellow man".
    pedro the swift
    20th Apr 2019
    6:17pm
    The bible and Koran are about as useful as Aesops Fables. Written by humans, interpreted by humans.
    Just another way to try to enslave uneducated fools. "Opium of the Masses" Karl got that right at least!
    Cowboy Jim
    24th Apr 2019
    2:26pm
    Unfortunately Karl was also guilty for the death of millions with his philosophy of communism. About time his famous grave stone was removed from the cemetery in London, the way they removed the grave of Hitler's parents in Braunau near Linz, Austria.
    Jacka
    20th Apr 2019
    7:13pm
    Well put Pedro, leave religion to the fanatical lunatics. Treat others as they would treat you and allow all the right of free speech. Whether I agree or disagree with your views I will always support your right to express them. Enough sparring for one day, off to beddy byes, goodnight all, sweet dreams, Cheers Jacka.
    Cowboy Jim
    24th Apr 2019
    2:22pm
    Had a full day there and I DO like a beer. Nothing doing so I did the sight seeing as one is supposed to do. Liked the place and what the sultan does for the population (they do not miss their brew obviously) so leave them alone. I personally do not like the same sex message rammed down my throat when I am in Sydney and I do not go into pubs with the poofter flag flying outside. To each his/own her own. As to wanting to go back again - not really!


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