President of Indonesia Stands Up Against LGBTQ Discrimination

Last week, Indonesia’s Youth and Sports Ministry banned LGBTQ people from entering the competition for the “Creative Youth Ambassador.” The ban questions if the LGBTQ community are “physically and mentally healthy.”

This comes after months of increasing anti-LGBTQ sentiments from politicians and officials and several anti-LGBTQ directives by government institutions. At the time, the Human Rights Watch described the movement as a “sustained assault” against the LGBTQ community.

Now President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has made his first public comments against this escalating discrimination against Indonesia’s LGBTQ community. “The police must act [to protect them]. There should be no discrimination against anyone.” President Widodo stated.

Kyle Knight, a LGBTQ researcher at Human Rights Watch said President Widodo’s statement signals that the “…administration is keen on cultivating an Indonesia that is inclusive and safe for everyone.”

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