Jokowi moves to stop ‘growth of rad­i­cal­ism’

> Cer­tain groups may try to storm par­lia­ment: Po­lice

The Sun (Malaysia) - - NEWS WITHOUT BORDERS -

JAKARTA: In­done­sian Pres­i­dent Joko “Jokowi” Wi­dodo said yes­ter­day he was de­ter­mined to “prevent the growth of rad­i­cal­ism”, ap­par­ently re­spond­ing to ru­mours that ex­trem­ists were plan­ning protests to desta­bilise his govern­ment.

Of­fi­cials say there has been mount­ing alarm within the govern­ment since more than 100,000 Mus­lims, led by hard­lin­ers, took to the streets of Jakarta on Nov 4 to de­mand the ouster of the cap­i­tal’s gov­er­nor, a Chris­tian, over al­leged blas­phemy.

Na­tional po­lice chief Tito Kar­na­vian warned on Mon­day that cer­tain groups may try to storm Par­lia­ment dur­ing ral­lies that are ex­pected this Fri­day and on Dec 2.

“There are hid­den meth­ods by cer­tain groups to en­ter and oc­cupy Par­lia­ment. If (th­ese ac­tions) are in­tended to over­throw the govern­ment, that’s a vi­o­la­tion of the law,” he was re­ported as say­ing.

Jokowi has blamed “po­lit­i­cal ac­tors” for fan­ning vi­o­lence that erupted dur­ing the Nov 4 protest, al­though he has not named any­one.

An­a­lysts have said op­po­nents of Jokowi, the first In­done­sian pres­i­dent to have come from out­side the po­lit­i­cal elite or mil­i­tary, are us­ing the furore over the Jakarta gov­er­nor to un­der­mine him.

Jokowi held talks with a se­nior coali­tion part­ner yes­ter­day, the lat­est in a se­ries of meet­ings with top po­lit­i­cal, re­li­gious and mil­i­tary of­fi­cials, to sig­nal the unity of his govern­ment and sup­port from the se­cu­rity es­tab­lish­ment.

“I want to em­pha­sise the spirit of plu­ral­ism ... and the govern­ment is de­ter­mined to prevent the growth of rad­i­cal­ism in this coun­try,” the pres­i­dent said af­ter the meet­ing at the pres­i­den­tial palace.

Jokowi has met re­peat­edly with the mil­i­tary and called for se­cu­rity forces to be on alert against fur­ther un­rest.

He has also met with top politi­cians, in­clud­ing the leader of his back­ing party, Me­gawati Sukarnop­u­tri, and opposition leader Prabowo Su­bianto. The three have jointly called for calm. The trig­ger for the ten­sion was a com­ment that Jakarta gov­er­nor Ba­suki Tja­haja Pur­nama, the first Chris­tian and eth­nic Chi­nese in the job, made about his op­po­nents’ use of the Qu­ran in po­lit­i­cal cam­paign­ing.

In­done­sia has the world’s largest Mus­lim pop­u­la­tion but is also home to size­able Chris­tian and Hindu pop­u­la­tions. – Reuters

Tito (left) and armed forces com­man­der Gen Ga­tot Nur­man­tyo speak to the press af­ter their meet­ing at the po­lice head­quar­ters in Jakarta on Mon­day.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Malaysia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.