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May 07, 2019

Petition pressures Oxford University to rescind honorary degree of Brunei's leader

type: Petition
by: Murat Suner

Under the leadership of Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah of Brunei, laws have been introduced which make homosexuality punishable by death.

These laws contravene international human rights standards set out in the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights - which was ratified by Brunei in 2006.

Although due to international outrage, pressure, and boycott Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah recently extended a moratorium on the death penalty to cover the new legislation – other forms of penalty remain and the laws still violate human rights. 

In 1993 the University of Oxford granted Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah an Honorary Degree of Civil Law by diploma. Unlike the University of Aberdeen and King's College London, the University of Oxford have refused to consider rescinding this honour.

We agree with the initiators of the petition that it is not enough to simply support "international condemnation" of Brunei's new penal code and "back the United Nation's call to stop the code entering into force," as this requires no action by the University itself. 

Click the box below to sign this petition on