Malaysian group wants legal probe of “disgraced” Irish civil partnership student

Mustafa Ali (R), Fadzil Noor (C) and Mahfuz Omar (L). UPALI ATURUGIRI/AFP/Getty Images

A Malaysian religious group is calling for the country’s police to intervene after one of their countrymen, who had been missing in Ireland for three years, was found to have entered into a civil partnership at the weekend.

The Kepong Islamic Youth Organisation (PBIK) said Ariff Alfian Rosli, who had been studying in Dublin when he broke off contact with his family, should be subject to the Islamic country’s laws criminalising homosexuality, Free Malaysia Today reports.

The group’s Chairman Norizan Ali said: “We are making the police report in the name of the Malays against a Malay youth who disgraced the name of our country, religion and race.

“We want to pressure the Higher Education Ministry and government-linked companies which sponsors students for education abroad to ensure that the students’ Malayness and Islamic identity are strong.”

He concluded: “Malaysian Muslims must adhere to the Islamic laws and our country’s laws even when they are abroad.”

With funding from the Malaysian oil and gas company Petronas, Ariff had been a medical student at University College Dublin.

When he broke contact with them, his parents filed missing person reports in their home country and in Ireland, travelling across the world eight times to try to find him, but it was not until pictures of his civil partnership ceremony surfaced that he was located.

The Malaysian ambassador in Ireland Ramli Naam said that Ariff had been found, but he could not reveal his whereabouts due to the country’s Data Protection Act.

Earlier this year, the Malaysian government drew condemnation after admitting it had sent 66 boys to a ‘gay cure’ camp, designed to promote “masculine behaviour”.

In November, it was reported that two of Malaysia’s thirteen states were considering heightening the penalties for homosexuality.

Mohd Ali Rustam, chief minister of the state of Malacca, said at the time: “So many people like to promote human rights, even up to the point they want to allow lesbian activities and homosexuality.

“In Islam, we cannot do all this. It is against Islamic law.”