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MALAYSIA

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Censorship, Free Speech, Right of Assembly Legislation/Cases/References
1.

Courts & Tribunals

On 19 August 2013, Court of Appeal justices Clement Allan Skinner, Mohamad Ariff Mohamad Yusof and David Wong Dak Wah upheld the decision of High Court Judge Rohana Yusuf - finding that the police ban on the annual LGBT Seksualiti Merdeka festival in 2011 was lawful - but say the ban on the event was only for that year [R1.2].

On 01 March 2012, Judge Rohana Yusuf of the High Court in Kuala Lumpur upheld the 2011 police ban on Seksualiti Merdeka, an annual sexuality rights festival, concluding that “The police are empowered under Section 27 of the Police Act to stop an event for investigation purposes.” [R1.1].

R1.2 GayStarNews: Ban on Malaysia’s LGBT festival upheld by Appeals Court 22 AUG 13
R1.1 IGLHRC: Malaysian Court Upholds Ban on Sexuality Rights Festival, "Seksualiti Merdeka" 09 MAR 12
Gender Identity, Intersex,
Transgender, Transexual

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Legislation/Cases/References
1.

National

In August 2001, transsexualism is against Islamic teachings and men who have sex-change operations will not be recognised as female [R1.3].

In February 2001, the government was requested to recognize transsexual men as women [R1.2].

On 01 June 1993, the Syariah Criminal (Negeri Sembilan) Enactment 1992 provides:

Part IV - Offences. Section 66. Male person posing as a woman.

Any male person who, in any public place wears a woman['s] attire and poses as a woman shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding one thousand ringgit or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months or to both [L1.1].

2.

Courts & Tribunals

On 07 November 2014, Judge Mohamad Yunus in the High Court in Seremban overturned a law that bans Muslim transgender women from wearing female clothing in Negeri Sembilan, saying it was 'degrading, oppressive and inhumane'. The landmark ruling that could trigger similar challenges in other states [C2.8], [R2.7].

On 11 October 2012, Judge Datuk Siti Mariah Ahmad in the Negeri Sembilan High Court dismissed a challenge by Adam Shazrul Bin Mohammad Yusoff, Mohammad Juzaili Bin Mohammad Khamis, Shukur Bin Jani and Wan Fairol Bin Wan Ismail to a law barring Muslim men from dressing or posing as women, prompting concern that more transgender people in the Muslim-majority country may be prosecuted [D2.6], [R2.5].

On 05 October 2012, the Court of Appeal unanimously dismissed without costs an application by Miss C, a 35-year old transsexual to review a High Court decision rejecting her application to have her gender changed from male to female on her MyKad. The quorum chairman Justice Datuk Abdul Wahab Patail said Malaysian medical reports were needed to support the Malaysian application rather than reports from Hong Kong and Thailand [R2.4].

On 30 August 2012, the high court in Seremban heard the case of Juzaili Khamis, 24, Shukor Jani, 25, Wan Fairol Wan Ismail, 27, and Adam Shazrul Yusoff, 25, four trans women challenging the Section 66 of the Syariah Criminal Enactment, which forbids them from behaving and dressing like women, in contradiction of the federal constitution, which states that: “no person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty”, bars discrimination on the grounds “of religion, race, descent, place of birth or gender” and protects freedom of expression [R2.3].

On 19 July 2011, the High Court in Eastern Terengganu reportedly ruled that Ashraf Hafiz, a 25-year-old transgender individual who underwent male-to-female gender transition surgery, was not entitled to a change of sex on her national identity card. The court opined that a person's sex is determined at birth and cannot be changed. Daily Pak Banker (Pakistan) [R2.2].

On 07 January 2011, High Court Judicial Commissioner Ridwan Ibrahim rejected an application by a post-operative transgender female to compel the National Registration Department (NRD) to alter the gender field on her identity card [R2.1].

In 2005, (reportedly) Judge (Datuk) V.T. Singham said the court had no power to make such a declaration but in another case presided by Datuk James Wong, the court allowed an application to change the gender in the person's identity card [R2.1].

R1.3 Sydney Xpress News: No Female Status for Trannies 02 AUG 01
R1.2 The Advocate: Malaysian Government Considers Counting Transsexuals as They Identify 27 FEB 01
R1.1 Syariah Criminal (Negeri Sembilan) Enactment 1992 (Accessed 15 OCT 12)
C2.8 Brief Judgment of the Court: Muhamad Juzailu Bin Mohd Khamis, et al. v. State Government of Negeri Sembilan, et al. No. M-01-498-11/2012 PDF 1.93MB, 07 NOV 14
R2.7 GayStarNews: Malaysia court scraps cross-dressing ban 07 NOV 14
D2.6 EqualRightsTrust: The Equal Rights Trust Legal Brief For Kanalesingam PDF 488.74kb, 06 JUL 12
R2.5 The New York Times: Malaysian Court Rejects Challenge to Cross-Dressing Ban 11 OCT 12
R2.4 The Sun Daily: Court of Appeal dismisses application by transsexual for MyKad change 05 OCT 12
R2.3 PinkNews: Malaysia: Court case challenges trans "discrimination" law 31 AUG 12
R2.2 Lesbian / Gay Law Notes: International Notes PDF 487.30kb, SEP 11 at 193
R2.1 fridæ: Malaysian transsexual to appeal court decision 10 JAN 11
HIV Aids Legislation/Cases/References
1.

National

In March 1998, the Immigration Department was reported to have sent home 1,030 legal foreign workers because they tested positive for HIV, hepatitis, tuberculosis or venereal disease [R1.1].

R1.1 Capital Q: Malaysia Deports Positive Workers 27 MAR 98

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Homosexuality, Sodomy Legislation/Cases/References
1.

National

The law in Malaysia prohibits consensual sex between same-sex couples

Penal Code (Act No. 574) (Consolidated Version with amendments as of November 15, 1998) provides -

Unnatural Offences Section 377A Carnal intercourse against the order of nature

Any person who has sexual connection with another person by the introduction of the penis into the anus or mouth of the other person is said to commit carnal intercourse against the order of nature. (Explanation: Penetration is sufficient to constitute the sexual connection necessary to the offence described in this section).

Section 377B Punishment for committing carnal intercourse against the order of nature

Whoever voluntarily commits carnal intercourse against the order of nature shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to twenty years, and shall also be liable to whipping.

Section 377C Committing carnal intercourse against the order of nature without consent, etc.

Whoever voluntarily commits carnal intercourse against the order of nature on another person without the consent, or against the will, of the other person, or by putting other person in fear of death or hurt to the person or any other person, shall be punished with imprisonment for a term of not less than five years and not more than twenty years, and shall also be liable to whipping.

Section 377D Outrages on decency

Any person who, in public or private, commits, or abets the commission of, or procures or attempts to procure the commission by any person of, any act of gross indecency with another person, shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years.

Islamic Sharia Laws

Several states in Malaysia have instated Islamic Sharia laws, applying to male and female muslims, criminalizing homosexual and lesbian acts with up to three years imprisonment and whipping. The Sharia Penal law in the Malaysian state of Syriah prescribes penalties for sodomy (Liwat) and lesbian relations (Musahaqat) with fines of RM5,000.00, three years imprisonment and 6 lashes of the whip. All these penalties can be combined [R1.4].


In November 2000, it was reported that over 100 Malaysian men were arrested by the Islamic Affairs Department's morality police for "attempting to commit homosexual acts" last year in Kuala Lumpur [R1.3].


In June 1999, Malaysian leaders have vehemently rejected a call to scrap the country's law prohibiting sexual acts between males [R1.2].


In November 1998, a group called the People's Voluntary Anti-Homosexual Movement (Pasrah) expressed a hope to "wipe out" gays, calling for severe penalties for gay sex and the closure of gay nightclubs [R1.1].

2.

Courts & Tribunals

On 07 March 2014, Appeals Court Judge Balia Yusof Wahi ruled that the lower court's decision to acquit former Deputy Prime Minister 66-year old Anwar Ibrahim of sodomy charges was wrong, sentencing him to five years in jail [R2.2].

In October 2008, a National Fatwa Council ruling banned lesbian sex or other "masculine" activities for female Muslims [R2.1].

R1.4 ILGA: State-Sponsored Homophobia PDF 382.87kb, May 2008
R1.3 Capital Q: Morality Cops Target Gays 10 NOV 00
R1.2 The Australian: Malaysia Rejects Call to Scrap Gay Sex Law 14 JUN 99
R1.1 Capital Q: Malaysian Plan to "Wipe Out" Gays 06 NOV 98
R2.2 PinkNews: Malaysia: Ex-Deputy Prime Minister jailed for five years on sodomy charges 07 MAR 14
R2.1 PinkNews.co.uk: Malaysia's Mulsims Ban Lesbian Sex and Other "Masculine Behaviour"" 24 OCT 08

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