Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Bali clamps down on ‘disrespectful’ visitors over nude video

Bali clamps down on ‘disrespectful’ visitors over nude video

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Bali Governor I Wayan Koster (second right, rear) speaks at a press conference on May 6, 2022, announcing the deportation of Russian couple Amdrei Fazleev (left, front) and Alina Fazleeva (second left, front) for taking nude photos at a sacred tree in a Hindu temple compound. (Bali Provincial Administration /File)

Bali clamps down on ‘disrespectful’ visitors over nude video

Bali Governor I Wayan Koster has reiterated that the province will not tolerate any foreign nationals who do not respect the local culture as authorities deported on Friday night a Russian couple caught in a viral video, which shows one of the pair posing naked by a sacred tree at a temple compound.

“Although they have apologized, we will not forgive them. They should be sanctioned. It is about maintaining the dignity and [honor] of Balinese culture,” Koster told a press conference earlier on Friday, at which the couple was also present.

“It is more important for us to uphold our culture, respect the dignity of Balinese culture, rather than tolerate any action that damages Balinese culture and the image of Bali tourism in the eyes of the world,” Koster said.

“If you can’t follow the rules, just don’t come to Bali,” he stressed.

Alina Fazleeva, 28, and Amdrei Fazleev, 36, who were in Bali on a temporary stay permit (KITAS), were deported from the country and prohibited from returning for at least six months.

Fazleev recorded a video on May 1 of his wife Fazleeva posing nude by a 700-year-old tree at Babakan Temple in Tabanan, Bali. He then uploaded the footage to her Instagram account, which has more than 18,000 followers.

“They have been found guilty of a public order disturbance and disrespecting the country’s rules. They are deported and banned from entering Indonesia for violating the immigration law,” Jamaruli Manuhuruk, the head of the Bali Justice and Human Rights Office, said.

Soon after the video went viral, the couple returned to the tree and performed a ritual to ask for forgiveness. The local police brought in the couple for questioning and then transferred the pair to the Immigration Office’s detention center.

The couple told authorities they were not aware that the site was sacred, and that they were taking a series of photographs themed “merging with nature” for personal purposes.

Balinese authorities decided last month to deport Canadian actor and self-proclaimed wellness guru Jeffrey Douglas Craigen, 34, after a viral video emerged showing him dancing naked at a sacred mountain.

The Hindu-majority province has expelled dozens of foreigners in recent years for disrespecting sacred sites or flouting the Covid-19 restrictions.



  • Joy as Koh Ker Temple registered by UNESCO

    Cambodia's Koh Ker Temple archaeological site has been officially added to UNESCO’s World Heritage List, during the 45th session of the World Heritage Committee held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on September 17. The ancient temple, also known as Lingapura or Chok Gargyar, is located in

  • Famed US collector family return artefacts to Cambodia

    In the latest repatriation of ancient artefacts from the US, a total of 33 pieces of Khmer cultural heritage will soon return home, according to the Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts. In a September 12 press statement, it said the US Attorney’s Office for the

  • Cambodia set to celebrate Koh Ker UNESCO listing

    To celebrate the inscription of the Koh Ker archaeological site on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, the Ministry of Cults and Religion has appealed to pagodas and places of worship to celebrate the achievement by ringing bells, shaking rattles and banging gongs on September 20. Venerable

  • Kampot curfew imposed to curb ‘gang’ violence

    Kampot provincial police have announced measures to contain a recent spike in antisocial behaviour by “unruly’ youth. Officials say the province has been plagued by recent violence among so-called “gang members”, who often fight with weapons such as knives and machetes. Several social observers have

  • CP denied registration documents by ministry

    The Ministry of Interior will not reissue registration documents to the Candlelight Party (CP). Following a September 21 meeting between ministry secretary of state Bun Honn and CP representatives, the ministry cited the fact that there is no relevant law which would authorise it to do

  • Manet touches down in Beijing for high-level meetings

    Prime Minister Hun Manet arrived in Beijing on September 14 for his first official visit to China, where he is slated to attend the 20th China-ASEAN Expo and meet other leaders including Chinese President Xi Jinping. Upon his arrival, Manet laid a wreath at the Monument