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03/09/2022 Indonesia (International Christian Concern) – On March 4, the Indonesian government paid out 24 billion rupiah (U.S. $1.7 million) in compensation to 142 victims of terrorism and their families in Central Sulawesi, a province where Islamic militants have carried out attacks since the 2000s.

Hasto Atmojo Suroyo, the head of the central government’s Witness and Victim Protection Agency, said the payout would serve those victimized by terrorism, human rights abuses, human trafficking, and other crimes. The recipients included relatives of 45 people who were killed in terrorist attacks and those who were injured but survived.

After a ceremony to hand over the compensation money to victims and victims’ relatives at the governor’s office in Palu, Hasto told reporters that the recipients included victims of 20 terrorist attacks before the enactment of the 2018 anti-terrorism law.

According to Benar News, one of those in Central Sulawesi who received compensation last Friday was the widow of Marten Solong, one of four Christian farmers killed by militants with the Islamic State-linked Eastern Indonesian Mujahideen (MIT) group in Poso regency last May.

“We are very grateful for this assistance,” Maria Solong told reporters after the ceremony at the provincial governor’s office. “Some of the money will be used to buy daily necessities, and the rest will be used to start a farming business,” she added.

The 2018 anti-terrorism law was rushed through parliament following suicide bombings in May 2018 that targeted churches in the country’s second-largest city, Surabaya. The attacks took the lives of 22 people, including the bombers. The law mandates compensation for terrorism victims. So far, Jakarta has spent slightly more than 59 billion rupiah ($4.1 million) to compensate these victims and their families.

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