News 12 february — 14:11

Indonesia artists slam bill banning 'negative' foreign influences

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Musicians in Indonesiahave slammed a new draft law seeking to criminalise content deemed pornographic or blasphemous, saying it could potentially limit freedom of expression across the vast archipelago, AL Jazeera reports.

Under the Music Bill (RUU Permusikan), which is being considered by parliament, creators would be "prohibited from including negative influences from foreign cultures or those that demean human dignity".

Offenders could face fines or jail time.

Since its unveiling last week, the bill has faced a backlash on social media, while an online petitioncalling for its scrapping has attracted almost 270,000 signatures as of Tuesday. On Sunday, dozens of protesters in Bogor near the capital, Jakarta, rallied against the proposed legislation, according to media reports.

"The draft law is ridiculous and doesn't make sense," Mikail "Mike" Israfil, the lead singer of Indonesian punk band Marjinal, told Al Jazeera.

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