LGBTI communities in Indonesia are facing increasing crackdowns both from the police and the municipal police (Satpol PP) with at least four series of arrests and public humiliations having taken place across the country in the past month, Amnesty International says.
The latest crackdown took place on November 4 when Satpol PP in Padang, West Sumatra, arrested ten people assumed to be lesbian women after one of them posted a photo of her kissing and hugging her girlfriend on Facebook. The Satpol PP moved to make the arrest after people in Padang complained about the picture. They said that the ten people would be sent to a local social affairs agency to undergo an “education program” without elaborating further.
Meanwhile, in the neighboring province of Lampung, local Satpol PP also raided a beach and arrested three people whom they suspected of being transgender women in an operation said to “provide safety and maintain public order” in the city. Following the raid, the Satpol PP hosed these people down in public using a fire truck as part of what it called a ‘mandatory bath’, or ghusl.