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ICC Note: “A motorcyclist came down the road and tried to hit me. When I looked down, I saw that I was bleeding. The police were 100 meters away. The attackers also had friends nearby. They attacked and beat the Reverend Luspida Simanjuntak until she was down on the ground. The police put me and the reverend on a police motorcycle. The thugs pulled her off the motorcycle and hit her three times with a wooden stick.”
– Asia Lumbantoruan, an elder in the Batak Christian HKBP Ciketing church in Bekasi, on how young Muslims on motorbikes stabbed him on September 4, 2010. Two attackers were subsequently each sentenced to three to seven-and-a-half months in prison.
2/28/2013 Indonesia (HRW) – The Indonesian government is failing to protect the country’s religious minorities from growing religious intolerance and violence, Human Rights Watch said in a new report released today. President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono should respond much more decisively and adopt a “zero tolerance” policy for attacks on religious minority communities.
The 107-page report, “In Religion’s Name: Abuses against Religious Minorities in Indonesia,” documents the government’s failure to confront militant groups whose thuggish harassment and assaults on houses of worship and members of religious minorities has become increasingly aggressive. Those targeted include Ahmadiyahs, Christians, and Shia Muslims. Indonesian monitoring groups have noted a steady increase in such attacks, one group finding 264 violent incidents over the past year.
“The Indonesian government’s failure to take decisive action to protect religious minorities from threats and violence is undermining its claims to being a rights-respecting democracy,” said Brad Adams, Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “National leadership is essential. Yudhoyono needs to insist that national laws be enforced, announce that every violent attack will be prosecuted, and map out a comprehensive strategy to combat rising religious intolerance.”

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