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Brunei once held off on strict Islamic law to stay in a U.S.-backed trade pact. Then Trump pulled out.

2019-04-13 10:09:43       source:The Washington Post

April 13, 2019

HONG KONG — When more than 100 members of Congress raised worries in 2014 over plans to include Brunei in a sweeping Pacific trade deal, envoys from the tiny sultanate rushed to Washington with a message: We may be thinking about stricter Islamic laws, but we won’t really enforce them.

The damage-control mission by Brunei — an oil- and gas-rich patch of coast and rain forest on the island of Borneo — came after its sultan began the first phase of strict sharia-inspired laws, U.S. officials said. At the time, the Obama administration was deep in negotiations over the Trans- Pacific Partnership, or TPP, with Brunei and others in the historic deal.

The laws, when fully implemented, would punish gay sex and adultery with death by stoning, and stealing would be punished with amputation. 

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