The Malaysian deputy prime minister has made his government’s position on LGBT rights clear again at a meeting of Islamic agencies in Kuala Lumpur.
Muhyiddin Yassin, who is also the education minister, said that Malaysian Muslims were facing two challenges – the LGBT movement and demands for more freedom within the religion, The Malaysian Insider reports.
Muhiyiddin said that LGBT rights advocates in Malaysia are ‘poising’ the minds of Muslims to accept ‘deviant practices’.
The LGBT rights ‘movement’ in Malaysia stalled after the police broke-up the Seksualiti Merdeka (sexualities rights) festival in November 2011.
A leading LGBT rights activist said in an interview with Gay Star News in January that they had decided to ‘lay low’ because any activities they plan are misrepresented by politicians.
‘At the moment the government are looking for any opportunity to create a media storm. And we don’t want to give them that. So our strategy is to lay low for a while,’ said Jerome Kugan, one of the co-founders of Seksualiti Merdeka. ‘We don’t want to give the government more fuel in their anti-gay rhetoric.’
Kugan said the group would plan another Seksualiti Merdeka festival after the general election, which has been called for 5 May. Neither of the main coalitions have appealed to the LGBT vote in their manifestos.