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  • » 10/05/2010, 00.00

    INDONESIA

    Religious intolerance rising among Indonesian Muslims

    Mathias Hariyadi

    About 57.8 per cent of Muslims oppose the construction of churches or other non-Muslim place of worship. Only 27.6 per cent accept that non-Muslim teachers teach Muslims. The absence of government policy and unrestrained schools and teachers are among the causes of the rising fundamentalism.

    Jakarta (AsiaNews) – Recent surveys indicate that Indonesian Muslims are increasingly intolerant of other religions, this according to a report published by the Jakarta-based Islamic National University (UIN). This has taken the form of non-acceptance by Muslims of non-Muslim teachers in public schools and opposition to new churches or non-Muslim places of worship.

    The survey, which compares data from 2001 to data from 2010, was conducted by the Centre for the Study of Islam and Society (PPIM), an independent research centre at the State Islamic University (UIN) in Jakarta, headed by executive director Jajat Burhanudin.

    Each year, the PPIM interviews about 1,200 Muslim men and women, 17 years and older, most of whom are elementary to junior high school graduates.

    The data shows that Muslim opposition to churches and non-Muslim religious buildings rose from 40.5 per cent to 57.8 per cent.

    In 2010, around 27.6 per cent of those surveyed said they did mind if a non-Muslim taught their children at school, a 6.2 per cent increase compared to 2008 (21.4 percent), but still lower than in 2007 (33.5 percent).

    According to PPIM executive director Burhanudin, greater intolerance is closely linked to Islamic fundamentalism, whose rise is directly related to the absence of policies to counter it in favour of a more moderate Islam,

    At the same time, more and more, teachers in Muslim schools and colleges are using “emotional appeals” against non-Muslims, acting independently of any Muslim association, which makes it hard for the government to monitor them.

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    See also

    26/09/2006 INDONESIA
    West Java: Muslim extremists continue to attack churches

    A crowd of fundamentalists attacked a church near Bandung. They were stopped by police but threatened to return. A new decree on the construction of places of worship does not seem to have improved the difficult plight of Christians.



    08/03/2006 INDONESIA
    Indonesian Christians sceptical about new decree on places of worship
    The revision of controversial decree regulating building places of worship is completed. Christians react as Muslim leaders express their support.

    28/03/2006 INDONESIA
    Places of worship decrees violate minority rights, say religious leaders
    Religious and political leaders call for changes to new decrees ; they tell AsiaNews that the new regulations are absurd, invasive red tape and unconstitutional.

    13/01/2009 MYANMAR
    Yangon, dictatorship closes Christian and Muslim houses of prayer
    The military regime orders a halt to services and prayers in private buildings and homes. Those who do not follow the new dispositions will have the building confiscated, and will face "serious action." For some time, the junta has not been granting permits for the construction of places of worship.

    27/06/2008 INDONESIA
    Indonesian authorities tear down three churches in Bekasi
    Disregarding an agreement reached with Christian religious leaders, Indonesian officials demolish three Protestant churches, which had been previously forced to suspend their Sunday functions. Christians complain about what they view as a “discriminatory act against us.”



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