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  • mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato


    » 10/20/2009, 00.00

    INDONESIA

    West Java, the construction of the Catholic church of Saint Mary blocked



    Two years ago the go ahead was granted by local authorities, who have now stopped the project over alleged "irregularities". The Christian community speaks of an excuse and leaves the matter in the hands of a lawyer. "It may take up to 10 years to get permission to build a church in Indonesia, only to have it retracted under pressure from Islamic movements”.

    Jakarta (AsiaNews) - The Catholic Church of Saint Mary in the district of Purwakarta, West Java province, will not be built, the authorities have revoked the building permits issued two years ago. It is a massive disappointment to the faithful, who had supervised the preparation of all documents and had obtained all necessary permits. Local officials argue that there have been some "irregularities", in the process that led to the issuance of the go ahead. According to the Christians these irregularities are a pretext to block the project.

    The process for building a church in Indonesia - Catholic or Protestant - is quite complicated and may take five to ten years to obtain all permits required by law. The procedure is governed by the Izin Mendirikan Bangunan (IMB), a species of written protocol that allows for construction to commence and is issued by local authorities.  

    The story gets more complicated if it is a place of Christian worship: permission must be obtained from a number of residents in the area where the building is to be constructed and the local Group for Interfaith Dialogue. And even if the permission is granted "unspecified reasons" can come into play that will lead officials to block the projects. Often, this occurs after pressure from the Muslim community or radical Islamic movements in the name of religious fanaticism.

    Yesterday, the Indonesian newspaper Tempo reported on an order issued by Dedi Mulyadi, head of Purwakarta district, who officially revoked the permit - issued two years earlier - to build the church of Saint Mary in the village of Cinangka in sub-district Bungur of Sari. Jaenal Arifin, a local official, explained that the letter is dated 16 October and that there were some "irregularities" discovered in the granting of the IMB. The investigation into the resident’s approval carried out by the Interfaith Dialogue Forum Agency (Fkub) revealed "45 positive opinions" instead of "over 60" as required by law. “So the permit - concludes Arifin - has been withdrawn." Hadi, an official with the local church of Saint Mary does not want to comment on the story and explains that "everything is in the hands of our lawyer."

    In the past, Indonesia has recorded cases of sudden and mysterious revocation of permits to build Christian places of worship. Among these, a Protestant church, blocked by Nurmahmudi Ismail, former leader of the PKS - a radical Islamic movement - and current mayor of Depok, in the regency of Bogor. In 2004, a Pentecostal church in Tanjun Senen, in the city of Bandar Lampung (capital of Lampung province) was closed by a local protest, raised against the construction of the building. (MH)

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    See also

    11/08/2015 INDONESIA
    West Java, Islamic extremists block construction of St. Clare Parish
    Opponents argue that the faithful do not have a building permit. In reality, the permit was obtained, after 17 years. The church should serve 9 thousand faithful. The Bekasi mayor gives in to protesters' demands. Religious intolerance is one the rise in the country and there is a certain "impotence" of the government in curbing Islamic Extremists. A long list of churches blocked or scrapped.

    17/02/2010 INDONESIA
    Bekasi: Islamic groups against the Protestant church, it promotes proselytizing
    At least 16 extremist movements have ordered an end to the charitable activities and worship. They attempt to hide "forced conversions". Leaders of the Protestant Synod: unfounded accusations. In 2009 over 200 cases of violations of religious freedom. The Catholic church of Saint Mary wins the legal battle against the authorities of Purwakarta.

    10/03/2011 INDONESIA
    Yogyakarta: Muslim leader gets Protestant church to close
    A Muslim guru accuses Christian clergyman of proselytising, describing his church as illegal and without a building permit. In reality, the pastor is in favour of interfaith dialogue, funding the education of five Muslim children without trying to convert them. Sources tell AsiaNews that the whole thing was a setup by the self-styled Muslim leader, even though no one knows who is or where he comes from.

    17/01/2012 INDONESIA
    Yasmin church: radical Islamists attack two members of parliament during Sunday celebration
    Two members of the Islamic party and the Democratic Party pkb PDI-P who were participating in a ceremony Sunday with the congregation of the Church Yasmin were insulted and verbally assaulted. The congregation has had to interrupt the liturgy, and move elsewhere, but even there the radicals have prevented the celebration. The inertia of the central government and the complicity of the mayor.

    24/03/2011 INDONESIA
    Yasmin Church: the mayor of Bogor revokes permit for church
    The official reason is false signatures on application, but it is believed to be an excuse. Christians and rights groups denounce a decision contrary to the law and a political will to appease Islamic extremist groups.



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