Islam - Religion of Intolerance

Islam and Religious Freedom
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He is a devout religious figure. We complement each other well," Widodo explained about his choice of Amin. In most countries, nationalists are usually regarded as right-wing. In Indonesia, however, they are seen as middle-of-the-road. Historically, the country has been ruled by the military or elites.

Widodo, a former furniture maker, is its first grass roots leader. His current vice president, Jusuf Kalla, is a wealthy businessman. Widodo picked the Muslim cleric as his running mate due to a controversy that rocked his ascent to power two years ago. After stepping down as governor of Jakarta in to assume the presidency, Widodo handed over the reins to his old ally, Deputy Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, an ethnic Chinese and Christian.

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In September , Basuki ignited a furor when, during a gubernatorial campaign speech, he said that Mulsim-hardliners opposing him on religious grounds were misleading other Muslims and their belief in the Quran. The controversial speech provoked a national outcry among Muslims, , of whom took to the streets of Jakarta in protest.

Basuki was eventually defeated in the April gubernatorial election by a candidate backed by Muslim extremists, and was later found guilty of blasphemy and sentenced to two years in prison, a tougher punishment than prosecutors had sought. The downfall of Basuki dealt the somewhat secular Widodo a serious blow, with opposition parties noting that religion could become a lighting-rod issue in future polls.

Prabowo Subianto, who lost to Widodo in the presidential election, has been expected to use the president's perceived weak faith in Islam as a way to win votes.

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Drug-related crime in Indonesia Don Widodo's tilt with windmills Segregation in countries by type in some countries, categories overlap. For them, the truth that God has revealed is the most important truth there is; therefore, denying or doubting this truth is extremely dangerous, both for nonbelievers, who lack this essential truth, and for believers, who may well be misled by the denials and doubts of nonbelievers. Equally destructive, however, can be social intolerance, often backed by private violence and government indifference. The starting point is to realize the tragic reality of an intolerant and violent world. This article needs additional citations for verification. A Pew Research Center poll in found that in Iraq, Malaysia, Pakistan and other nations in which Islam is officially favored, a large majority of Muslims think some form of Islamic law should be the law of the land.

Hence, Widodo's choice of the devout and powerful Amin, who the president is banking on to garner more support among Muslims. Amin will serve as a "very strong shield" against religious attacks from the opposition camp, but the mixing of religion and politics will grow stronger in Indonesia, said Peter Mumford, an analyst with Eurasia Group, a U. Given his age, Amin is unlikely to run in any presidential election after the race, but his role as future kingmaker is not to be underestimated.

The Basuki scandal reveals the growing religious intolerance in the country. A survey conducted by Lingkaran Survei Indonesia, a private Indonesia research company, found that Muslim extremists began to rise in prominence after Indonesia's democratization in Under the credo of "unity in diversity," the country does not recognize Islam as its national religion, unlike neighboring Malaysia.

During Suharto's reign, Islamic organizations were tightly muzzled. But as the country embraces freer expression, Islamic organizations have become increasingly active, including those considered militant.

Religious Freedoms Continue to Slip in Indonesia

The trend has become more visible since the Basuki scandal and emergence of Widodo, who is perceived as being more worldly than many of his predecessors. While many Southeast Asian countries are becoming more authoritarian -- notably Thailand, the Philippines and Cambodia -- Indonesia has experienced steady democratization. John Foxe. Kristyn Decker. Alvin H. Ubald Rugirangoga.

Indonesia at Melbourne is supported by:

Dario Fernandez-Morera. Ayaz Virji. David Ramos.

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