Myanmar’s parliament passed a shockingly discriminatory bill this week that will regulate marriages between Buddhist women and men from outside the Buddhist religion. The new law received international condemnation from human rights groups and activists who view the bill as destructive to women’s rights, as well a sign of growing Islamophobia in the country. The bill is one of four “Protection of Race and Religion Laws” and, according to Al Jazeera, it requires Buddhist women to register their intent to marry outside their faith, and stipulates that their marriage can be stopped if there are objections. According to The Associated Press, Phil Robertson of Human Rights Watch said the bill is related to a campaign by Buddhist groups that have incited anti-Muslim hatred. Activist Wai Wai Nu reportedly told Al Jazeera, “It’s very frustrating because the government says we are going to be a democracy .. .but this kind of law, which restricts rights of women goes against international norms and standards.” In May, Myanmar received heavy criticism after passing a law to limit the number of pregnancies women could have.
Read the full story at Al Jazeera.