Sharia strikes again:
Women in the Indonesian city of Lhokseumawe have been banned from straddling motorbikes because of fears that it distracts men drivers.
Civic leaders in Aceh province, which is ruled by strict sharia law, have launched a crackdown on what they say are un-Islamic practices.
Apart from the side-saddle law other laws have been passed that prohibit women from wearing tight trousers, and permits flogging of homosexuals and stoning of adulterers.
Legislatorsd said that women sitting astride motorbikes was "improper". Mayor Suaidi Yahya said: "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.
"It's improper for women to sit astride. We implement Islamic law here."
The mayor told the Jakarta Globe that behaviour and morals were straying from Aceh's Islamic cultural values.
"We want to save women from things that will cause them to violate shariah law. We wish to honour women with this ban because they are delicate creatures," he said....
The straddling ban will come into effect over the next few months and the government plans to distribute handouts to inform residents. Penalties for infringement have not been detailed.
It'll probably involve flogging - what with women being such delicate creatures and all.