Things changed drastically after 20 May 1998 when democracy came to Indonesia and human rights became the most important factor in the country. As a result, the government and its law enforcement agencies tend to hesitate every time they want to take actions against violators of the laws.
This situation was used by radical people who claimed to be representing Islam to commit violence in Maluku, Sulawesi, and other regions almost without resistances. Whereas the two major Islam organizations in the country, Nahdatul Ulama (NU) and Muhamadiyah seemed to be silence.
In 2002, those radicals committed suicide bombings in Bali killing 202 people and injuring 209 others mostly foreign tourists, followed by a series of suicide bombings in 2003, 2004 (Jakarta), 2005 (Bali) and 2009 (Jakarta).
After the 2002 bombings, the government established one of the best anti-terrorist Police unit in the world i.e. DENSUS-88 which was very successful in hunting, capturing and eliminating those involved.
Unfortunately beside those armed violence, there were other violence made by similar radical groups.
Last September 13 members of the FPI attacked a church in Bekasi, West Java, stabbed a priest and beat a member of congregation. However, last Tuesday the Prosecutor only demanded a 6-months jail term for the leader of those attackers.
Last Sunday a mob of 1,500 angry people attacked the mosque of the Ahmadiyah minority sect rejected by Muslims, in Cikeusik, Banten Province, last Sunday killing three members of the sect.
And yesterday an angry crowd dissatisfied with the verdict of the District Court of Temanggung, Central Java, handed down to a man suspected of blasphemy, set fire to the Bethel and Pantekosta churhes and threw stones at the Santo Petrus and Paulus churches.
In reaction to the both violence, President Susilo Bambang Yudoyono (SBY) has instructed law enforcement agencies to take action on those responsible for the attacks and disband radical groups that are involved in the attacks.
Further, GP Ansor, the youth organization of N.U as the largest Islamic organization in Indonesia, has sent its members to help reparation of the damaged churches.
Meanwhile, in order to settle the Ahmadiyah case, this evening the House of Representatives has invited the Chief of Police and Minister of Religious Affairs discuss about possible solution.
I hope that the government and the law enforcement agencies would immediately take serious actions as instructed by the president and bring everyone responsible for the attacks to justice, punish them severely and disband any groups or organizations that practice and/or condone violence.
Regarding the Ahmadiyah, perhaps we can follow its origin Pakistan which recognized it as an independent religion separated from Islam. But considering that its existence in Indonesia has been legally recognized since 1953, and efforts to solve this matter by the 2008 Joint Decree of the Minister of Religion, Minister of Home Affairs and Attorney General has not been effective, I hope that the Ahmadiyah would be involved in the discussion about its existence.
- Turning Blind Eye to Religious Bullies (The Jakarta Globe)
- Bekasi FPI Leader Faces 6-Months Sentence .... (The Jakarta Globe)
- Police Negligent in Ahmadiyah Attack (Tempointeraktif)
- Bom Bali 2002 (Wikipedia)
- Bom JW Marriot 2003 (Wikipedia)
- Bom Kedubes Australia 2004 (Wikipedia)
- Bom Bali 2005 (Wikipedia)
- Bom Jakarta 2009 (Wikipedia)