65 Indonesian punks forcibly shaved and stripped of body piercings

65 Indonesian punks have been detained by police in a conservative part of the country, and have then had their heads shaved and their body piercings removed. The mass de-punking took place in Aceh, the only Indonesian province to have so far imposed strict Islamic laws.

While punk music fans have complained about harrassment for months, the authorities took little direct action until they decided to raid a music show on Saturday. Scores of music fans were then taken to the local capital, Banda Aceh, for ‘moral re-education’. They are expected to be released in a few days.

The Aceh province struggled for many years to gain complete independence from Indonesia, but a few years ago agreed a deal for limited autonomy. Since then, critics argue that religious laws have been imposed with increasing vehemence.


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