8 Stories

Women Land Plane in Country That Doesn't Allow Them to Drive

They're Royal Brunei Airlines' first all-female pilot crew

(Newser) - Royal Brunei Airlines' first all-female pilot crew landed in Saudi Arabia last month to celebrate Brunei's National Day. It was a bit of an ironic moment—a fact not lost on the Telegraph , which states it highlighted "the absurdity of laws preventing women from driving cars." Women... More »

How a Grinch Sultan Stole Christmas

By threatening those celebrating publicly with 5 years in prison

(Newser) - Don't be caught wearing a Santa hat in Brunei unless you want to spend the next five years in prison. Hassanal Bolkiah, the sultan of the Muslim country on Borneo, has banned "the act of celebrating Christmas excessively and openly" for fear it could lead to "tasyabbuh... More »

Hollywood Shuns Posh Hotels ... Over Harsh Islamic Law

Stars protest Brunei ownership after nation OKs stoning

(Newser) - Hollywood has turned its back on two of its favorite hotels over harsh Islamic laws introduced in the tiny sultanate of Brunei. The Beverly Hills Hotel and the Hotel Bel-Air are owned by Brunei's sultan and at least nine major entertainment industry events have been pulled from the hotels,... More »

Brunei May Now Stone Adulterers to Death

Oil-rich kingdom to usher in sharia criminal law in 6 months

(Newser) - Beginning in April, adulterers in Brunei could find themselves stoned to death. That's because the country today announced that it will in six months begin enforcing sharia criminal law, which also includes such punishments as limb severing for theft and flogging for drinking alcohol. Sharia law will only apply... More »

Obama Nixes Asia Trip Amid Shutdown

John Kerry will visit Indonesia, Brunei

(Newser) - President Obama earlier announced he'd shorten his planned trip to Asia, instead dealing with the government shutdown; now, he's canceled the trip entirely, the White House says. Obama won't visit Malaysia, the Philippines, Indonesia, or Brunei. "The cancellation of this trip is another consequence of the... More »

Obama Attends East Asia Summit Amid Sea Feud

China at center of multiple territorial disputes

(Newser) - President Obama is in Cambodia today, meeting with East Asian leaders amid a contentious territorial dispute over the South China Sea . Speaking publicly, neither Obama nor Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao responded to reporters' shouted questions about the tensions, the BBC reports. Instead, Obama referred to a "cooperative and constructive... More »

3 Nations to Send First Female Athletes to Olympics

Saudi Arabia, Brunei, Qatar expected to have women compete in London

(Newser) - This summer's Olympics in London may be the first in which every nation will send at least one female athlete, reports the New York Times . That's because three Muslim holdouts—Saudi Arabia, Brunei, and Qatar—are expected to grudgingly make the concession. Don't expect full teams: Saudi... More »

Prince Fights to Keep Sex Statues Out of NYC Trial

Brunei sultan's brother doesn't want jury to hear about statues, polygamy

(Newser) - Brunei's "playboy prince" doesn't want a New York court to hear about the life-size statues he had made of himself having sex with a member of his harem, or about the harem itself. Jefri Bolkiah—who used to keep the statues on his 28-acre Long Island estate—is trying... More »

8 Stories