By Austin Ramzy
HONG KONG — Brunei said on Sunday it would not carry out executions by stoning for people convicted of adultery and gay sex, following widespread international protest over the brutality of such penalties.
Critics of the country’s newly enacted Islamic laws said several other harsh punishments remain on the books, including whipping and amputation, and they have called for continued opposition until the laws are completely revised.
The sultan of Brunei, Hassanal Bolkiah, said Sunday that his country had gone decades without carrying out the death penalty, and it would continue its de facto moratorium on executions despite the new punishments codified last month under a harsh interpretation of Islamic law.
The United States, Britain, France, Germany and other countries protested the law, as did several celebrities, including George Clooney, Ellen DeGeneres and Elton John. Luxury hotels owned by the sultan, including the Dorchester in London and the Beverly Hills Hotel and the Hotel Bel-Air in Los Angeles, faced calls for boycotts.
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