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  • » 04/28/2010, 00.00

    INDONESIA

    West Java, thousands of Islamic extremists attack a Christian center

    Mathias Hariyadi

    Three cars destroyed and some buildings set on fire. The origin of the attack a rumor that Christians wanted to build a chapel within the center. Hundreds of local police fail to stop the raid, but police chief promises justice.

    Jakarta (AsiaNews) - Thousands of Muslim extremists attacked a Christian educational center in Bogor regency, West Java province, Indonesia. The toll from yesterday’s attack is three destroyed cars and several buildings damaged or burnt. The wrath of fundamentalists was unleashed, and encouraged by the local Council of Ulema (MUI), by unsubstantiated rumours that the Christian community BKP Penabur were planning "to build a place of worship" within the complex.

    Targeted attacks against the Christian community continue in the regency of Bogor, coupled with the impotence of the Indonesian authorities unable to stop the violence with a religious background. Yesterday morning, thousands of Islamic extremists attacked and set fire to the center of the Foundation Penabur BPK, despite the garrison erected earlier by hundreds of police.

    The fundamentalists destroyed and burned three cars a part of the 10 buildings that make up the whole Christian complex. The Muslims anger was spurred on by rumours that the leaders of the foundation wanted to construct a chapel. The rumours were groundless, but were enough to ignite minds and incite the crowd. Local sources, on condition of anonymity, tell AsiaNews that the attackers were "people from the neighbouring sub-districts Cisaura and Ciawi. One detail that, in reality, shows the attacks were well orchestrated.

    The police, unable to prevent violence, promises justice. Six people were detained and are under interrogation. "If any of these is responsible for the attacks - said Tomex Kurniawan, police chief of Bogor City - we will not hesitate to establish an arrest warrant".

    Recently, hundreds of Muslims, which later became thousands, have appealed to Cisarua government, to put a stop to any construction activities within the BPK Penabur, despite the permit (IMB) issued by the authorities. Fundamentalists accuse Christian Foundation of "betraying" the "truce" which prohibited the creation of a Christian education centre in a predominantly Muslim area.

    The appeal was then transformed into a real indictment. The leaders of the Foundation have strongly denied the rumors about the construction of a small church. However, the intervention of local leaders of the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) has triggered a backlash from extremists. Rahmatullah, head of the MUI in Cisarua, claims not to be contrary to "hospitality centres," but - he claims - the Christians are hiding a secret plan to build a small chapel or prayer centres”.

     

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    See also

    23/07/2010 INDONESIA
    Indonesian police tears down house church
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    25/07/2007 INDONESIA
    Islamic leaders criticise attack against Carmelite centre
    Some Muslim hardliners come in for harsh criticism for creating a false and violent image of Islam. Police is also strongly condemned for not intervening decisively. Carmelite spokeswoman says she and her sisters are not worrying; they are trying to play down the controversy.

    18/05/2012 INDONESIA
    Muslim extremists throw stones and urine at Bekasi Christians
    The Filadelfia HKBP community met yesterday to celebrate the Ascension of the Lord. A mob attacked them, interrupting the religious service, which police failed to protect. Last week, a Christian journalist was beaten up for his faith.

    02/08/2004 iraq
    Chaldean Patriarch: "Debris and destruction everywhere, but we will not give in to discouragement"

    Islamic figures will call on the Patriarch this evening to express solidarity and condolences.



    05/06/2007 INDONESIA
    West Java: another Christian church attacked
    Shouting ‘Allah u Akbar’, a group of men storm a church Sunday in Bandung in West Java. The incident confirms a trend involving many attempts to suppress religious freedom in the predominantly Muslim country. A survey by a British human rights group shows that West Java is a hotbed of Indonesia’s anti-Christian movements.



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