London, MINA – Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah Brunei returned honorary title from Oxford University of England. The move comes after a global reaction led by celebrities, including George Clooney and Elton John who oppose the death penalty for gay sex and adultery.
Nearly 120 thousand people signed a petition in April calling on Oxford University to revoke the honorary legal title granted in 1993 to the sultan. He is the second longest king of government in the world and a prime minister of oil-rich country.
“As part of review process, the university wrote to notify Sultan on April 26, 2019, requesting his views on June 7, 2019,” the university said in a statement, quoted in the Straits Times on Friday.
Oxford University said the sultan had decided to return honorary title on May 6. The news of decision was later announced to the public on Thursday.
“Through a letter dated May 6, 2019, the sultan replied with his decision to return the title,” Oxford said.
Trying to quell the reaction, sultan said earlier this month that the death penalty would not be imposed. The law, condemned by the United Nations, has encouraged celebrities and rights groups to boycott the hotels belonging to the sultan. These include Dorchester in London and Beverley Hills Hotels in Los Angeles.
Several multinational companies have since banned staff from using hotel sultans. Some travel companies stop promoting Brunei as a tourist destination.
Myanmar, Malaysia and Singapore prohibit sexual relations of same men/woman. Brunei became the first country in the region to adopt a sharia criminal component at the national level in 2014. (T/Sj/P2)
Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)