ADDED ON: 10/20/2018

Bali Beauty Pageant Signals Renewed Anti-LGBT Crackdown

10/20/2018 | Voice of America

Majority-Hindu Bali has long been considered more tolerant of different sexual identities compared with other parts of Indonesia, especially amid recent anti-LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) crackdowns in the world’s largest Muslim-majority country. But a beauty pageant promoting HIV education and equality was this month shutdown by Islamic hardliners, sparking concern among some in the LGBT community that Bali is no longer a safe place. Organized by the Bali-based Gaya Dewata Foundation, which provides testing, counseling and support on HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases, the pageant has been held annually for the past three years. But this year, anti-LGBT Muslim groups reportedly harassed the owners of the Bhumiku Convention Hall in Denpasar, Bali’s capital.

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