Swatch Pride watches banned, owning one can lead to 3 years' jail


Pix from Swatch website.

PETALING JAYA: Anyone possessing Swatch products containing elements of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Plus (LGBTQ+) could face up to three years in jail, a maximum fine of RM20,000 or both, if convicted.

The Home Ministry said Putrajaya banned all Swatch products containing LGBTQ+ elements including watches, boxes, wrappers and all other relevant materials.

The ban was gazetted on Aug 10 and it is in line with provisions under Section 7 of the Printing Presses and Publications Act.

“The Malaysian Government is committed to stopping the spread of elements that could be harmful to morality, as well as the interest of the public and nation, in society,” said the Home Ministry.

The Home Ministry also said the Swatch products in question were banned because it is detrimental to morality, as well as public and national interests by promoting, supporting and normalising the LGBTQ+ movement, which is not accepted by the Malaysian public.

“The Home Ministry would like to reiterate its commitment to upholding public safety and harmony by monitoring and controlling publication to curb the spread of elements, beliefs and movements that are against local socio-culture,” added the Home Ministry.

The Home Ministry raided 11 Swatch stores in Klang Valley on May 13 and 14, and seized all the brand’s Pride Collection watches.

Several stores in Alor Setar, Kota Bharu, Johor Bahru, Kuching and Kuala Terengganu were raided as well but were let off with a warning.

Swatch group chief executive officer Nick Hayek Jr contested that their collection using rainbow colours carrying messages of peace and love was not harmful to anyone.

Swatch Malaysia has also filed a suit at the Kuala Lumpur High Court to challenge the seizure of 172 of its watches.

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LGBTQ+ , Swatch , Pride watches , Home Ministry , Jail , Ban

   

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