A Foreign and Commonwealth Office spokesperson said:
We welcome the announcement made by His Majesty The Sultan of Brunei on Sunday 5 May, in particular, confirmation that the de facto moratorium on the death penalty will apply to the Sharia Penal Code, and also His Majesty’s commitment to ratify the United Nations Convention Against Torture.
Following the implementation of the final phases of the Sharia Penal Code in Brunei on 3 April, the UK and others raised deep concerns about the potential impact on human rights and freedoms in Brunei, including for the LGBT community. It is clear that our message has been heard. The announcement by His Majesty demonstrates the importance of engaging in respectful dialogue and diplomacy to address sensitive issues.
The assurances provided by His Majesty the Sultan are positive and go some way to addressing our anxieties about the human rights situation in Brunei. We urge Brunei to build on these assurances and formalise its commitment to respect individual freedoms and minorities.