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Malaysia: Terengganu state bans bikinis

The fundamentalist Muslim government in a Malaysian state will ban women from wearing bikinis and from sharing swimming pools with men.
Hotels in the eastern state of Terengganu have been directed to build separate swimming pools for men and women, the Star newspaper quoted state tourism minister Wan Hassan Mohamad Ramli as saying. "We decided, in the interest of Muslims, to separate the two sexes when it comes to swimming pools," the paper quoted Wan Hassan as saying.

The Pan-Malaysian Islamic party, Malaysia's main opposition group, was swept into power in Terengganu in the 1999 elections and pledged to tighten Islamic laws in the oil-rich state. It has since imposed other strict rules, including the separation of men and women lining up at cash registers in supermarkets. Wan Hassan also said a dress code would be imposed at holiday resorts, barring bikinis and ordering women to dress "in accordance with local cultural norms." He did not elaborate or say when the new dress code would be imposed.