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    » 08/12/2008, 00.00

    INDONESIA

    Indonesian priest kidnapped, severely beaten

    Mathias Hariyadi

    Fr Susetyo was taken from his home and beaten by unknown assailants. He is known for his activity in interreligious dialogue, frowned on by radical Muslims. At the hospital, he has been visited by the younger brother of former president Wahid.

    Jakarta (AsiaNews) - Last night, Fr Benny Susetyo, secretary of the interreligious commission of the Indonesian bishops' conference, was kidnapped and severely beaten. At least three people forcibly removed him from his home in Bintaro, in southern Jakarta, took away his cell phone, and beat him.

    He is now recovering at Pondok Indah hospital in Jakarta, where he has been visited by other human rights activists, like Solahudin Wahid, a promoter of interreligious dialogue and the younger brother of former president Abdurrahman Wahid.

    The police of Kebayoran Lama say that "we have not conducted any investigation, as there has not been any crime reported to us". It is the first time in a long time that a Catholic priest has been kidnapped and beaten.

    Fr Susetyo is also an active member of the Alliance for Nation and Religious Freedom, a group disliked by radical Muslims for its position on the problem of the Ahmadiyya (an Islamic minority group often persecuted by other Muslims).

    Fr Ismartono, who is also active in religious dialogue, did not want to release any comment. He nonetheless noted that "the incident took place suddenly and very quickly. Benny had just regained consciousness when he learned he was at Pondok Indah".

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    See also

    13/10/2008 PHILIPPINES
    Philippines, member of Abu Sayyaf arrested for killing of Fr. Roda
    The missionary, who was the pastor of Tabawan for 20 years, was killed last January 15 during a kidnapping attempt. In the past, he had received threats from fundamentalists, because of his work for the disadvantaged and for the promotion of interreligious dialogue. The arrest was made by a navy unit.

    19/11/2008 INDIA
    Sister who was raped gives deposition to police, but will not return to Orissa
    Sister Meena and Fr. Thomas Chellan have recounted the violence they suffered on the night they were assaulted by Hindu fundamentalists. This sister remains in Delhi, and will not participate in the "American-style" lineup scheduled today in Baliguda. Ministers of the central government are meeting with Christian families from Orissa living in refugee camps.

    17/11/2005 INDONESIA
    Courage to shed light on Poso events lacking, says anti-terror chief

    The head of the anti-terrorism office of the Sulawesi police has hit out at the security forces for failing to shed light on the proceeding of investigations into regional violence, especially the beheading of three Christian students. Three out of the five original suspects linked to the triple homicide have been rearrested.



    13/10/2008 NEPAL
    Nepalese Muslims "happy" to celebrate feast together with Hindus
    The festival of Dashain, one of the most important moments for Hindu tradition, has become an occasion of "social harmony" and interreligious dialogue. Positive assessments from Hindu and Muslim leaders, who promote the "sharing of moments of celebration."

    29/12/2008 PHILIPPINES
    Bishops: optimism over resumption of dialogue between government and Moro Islamic Liberation Front
    All the members of the government delegation have been appointed. At Christmas, a ceasefire was observed by the army and the guerrillas.



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