Jakarta, October 22: Indonesia has arrested two people in Java island for running a Facebook page for gays, accusing them of publishing pornography, the media reported on Monday. In 2015, the couple had set up a Facebook page "Gay Bandung Indonesia", with more than 4,000 members.
West Java police spokesperson Trunoyudo Wisnu Andiko told Efe news that the two were arrested on Thursday and that investigations by the public prosecutor's office were underway.
Once they are formally charged under the Law on Electronic Information and Transactions (EIT), the two could face a maximum of six years in prison and a fine of up to one billion rupiah ($66,000) if convicted.
According to Andreas Harsono of Human Rights Watch Indonesia, this was the first time that the EIT law was being used against the LGBT community. It was earlier used to crack down on pornography, he added. Facebook Shows Parenting Ads To Mother of Stillborn, Apologises After Facing Backlash.
Aceh, in Sumatra island, is the only province in Indonesia where homosexuality is illegal. The arrests are being seen as yet another assault on the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) community in the country. In February, the country's Information Ministry had blocked more than 200 mobile applications and websites with content related to homosexuality.