Indonesia has asked the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) not to finance any lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community programmes in the country. The world's largest Muslim community has made it clear that LGBT campaigns are "not in accordance with the current social values of the nation."
Vice President Jusuf Kalla said that Indonesia's National Development Planning Agency or Bappenas, had recently verified a report that the UN body had allocated $8m (£5.5,. €7.17) to support LGBT campaigns in Southeast Asia, including Indonesia. The UNDP has now confirmed to Bappenas that the funds have been allocated for a programme in Thailand and not Indonesia.
He said any monetary support channelled to the LGBT community would most likely come from other non-governmental organisations, and not the UNDP. He has come out in strong opposition against LGBT campaigns in Indonesia.
Kalla has said in the past that such campaigns are not in accordance with the current social values of the Muslim country. Separately, the Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Luhut Panjaitan said that the LGBT community had the right to protection as they were also Indonesian citizens. Panjaitan urged the public not to be prejudiced towards the LGBT community.
Only last week, the government ordered all messaging applications like Line, WhatsApp and Facebook to remove LGBT-themed emojis from their applications following complaints from users against Line's latest emojis depicting same-sex couples.
The Japanese-based mobile chat application, withdrew the emojis and issued an apology. "We uphold the global standards, we filter culturally sensitive content," Line Indonesia spokesman Teddy Arifianto said.
Unlike other Muslim countries, homosexuality is not illegal in Indonesia. It however remains both a cultural and religious issue. Technology, Research and Higher Education Minister Muhammad Nasir had previously called on banning LGBT students from university campuses as universities are deemed to be "a moral safeguard."