A 20-year-old woman was meted a harsh punishment after authorities caught her standing too close to her boyfriend in Banda Aceh, Indonesia.
The woman, who was not named, was accused of violating Islamic Sharia law, according to the Daily Mail. The strict Sharia law requires unmarried couples not to become too intimate with each other. Violators are punished through public caning.
The accused woman was escorted by two women and brought to a stage outside a mosque. She was then forced to kneel on the ground before a masked man started hitting her with a cane while a jeering crowd looked on.
This was not the first time an Indonesian woman was punished for being too intimate with her significant other. Just last week, another woman was publicly caned for committing the same offence. She was hit 23 times.
Banda Aceh is the only province in Indonesia that enforces Sharia law. People are publicly flogged for a range of offences such as gambling, drinking alcohol, and engaging in gay sex.
The 20-year-old woman who was publicly flogged that day was just one of 13 people who were meted punishment outside the mosque. The offenders of the Sharia law, aged between 21 to 30 years old, committed several offences. Six unmarried couples were found guilty of being too intimate with each other. One man was flogged for spending time with a member of the opposite sex in a private location, which could incite adultery.
Another offender was a 22-year-old pregnant woman. She was spared from public flogging for now, but she will be meted the brutal punishment after she gives birth.
Last year, a woman named Nur Elita was marched to the yard of Baiturrahumim Mosque in Banda Aceh and was caned five times. The pain of the lashings was so horrible that Elita keeled over and was taken to the hospital. She was punished for getting too close to a fellow university student, who was also whipped that day.