Two Malaysian states are considering passing laws that could punish gay Muslims and gay rights supporters with prison sentences, a regional minister told AFP on Saturday.

“Homosexuality is against Islam. Men should look for women, not men. So that’s why we don’t want to follow this activity promoted by Western countries,” Mohamad Ali Rustam, chief minister of southern Malacca state said.

The politician is a member of Prime Minister Najib Razak’s ruling United Malays National Organisation party, which had announced plans in September to expand civil liberties and break with the country’s authoritarian past.

“People are talking about human rights, but this is not right… It’s our duty (to stop it) but we cannot take action because there is no law,” Mohamad Ali Rustam said.

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