Beer-Drinking Model Gets Ramadan Caning Reprieve

By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Aug 24, 2009 4:53 AM CDT
Muslim model Kartika Sari Dewi Shukarno, 32, left, is embraced by supporters before she is taken away by Islamic religious officers at her father's home in Karai, Malaysia, today.   (AP Photo/Mark Baker)
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(Newser) – A Muslim model sentenced to caning for drinking beer in Malaysia has been granted a reprieve during the holy month of Ramadan, Reuters reports. The caning will be carried out in late September, officials said. Kartika Sari Dewi Shukarno, a mother of two who lives in Singapore, was arrested while drinking a beer in a hotel lobby in Panang; she demanded that her punishment be carried out in public.

Her case has drawn widespread criticism over increasingly harsh Islamic punishments in the traditionally moderate nation. It appeared for a time that she was being freed, but later became clear that the sentence was merely postponed. "I am shocked but I remain steadfast with my decision," said Kartika.  "All I want now is to know my true situation and do not treat me like a football."