A city in Indonesia's Aceh province has banned women from straddling male drivers on motorbikes after officials deemed the position "improper".
The move comes after leaders from the country's only province ruled by strict
sharia law drafted a series of new bills including banning women from wearing
tight trousers, stoning adulterers and flogging homosexuals. Under the new law, women in Lhokseumawe city, on the northern tip of Sumatra
island, will have to sit "side-saddle" with their legs dangling off to one
"Women sitting on motorbikes must not sit astride because it will provoke the
male driver. It's also to protect women from an undesirable condition," Suaidi
Yahya said. "It's improper for women to sit astride. We implement Islamic law
Women are allowed to straddle motorbikes if they are driving, as long as they
are dressed "in a Muslim way", Yahya said. The mayor plans to publicise the ban in coming weeks and will discuss
sanctions with local Muslim clerics before issuing a formal regulation.