This week in Indonesia, it is “Interfaith Harmony Week,” a time for those of differing religions to share peace and harmony with one another. However, in this Asian nation, the Amadiyyah sect of the Muslin religion is regarded with venom and hate because its followers are regarded as heretics by main stream followers of the religion. Over the past few weeks there has been renewed violence by fundamentalist Muslims against the Ahmaindyyah and police have been warned about possible attacks on followers. Over the weekend, three members of the Ahmadiyyah were brutally beaten to death as police idly stood by and ignored the murders. President Yudhoyono piously proclaimed: “We cannot tolerate this kind of thing happening again and again.” But, it is happening again and again and police refuse to intervene against those carrying out assaults. Actually, they informed one of the men who was attacked to leave his home! Mobs gathered for the assaults and they probably will get away with blatant murders.
Historically, Indonesia is a moderate Muslim nation which allows those of other faiths to live in peace. But the Ahmadiyyah apparently annoy the religious right because they believe in peace and harmony with those of all faiths. Last year the Minister of Religious Affairs called for outlawing the group. Indonesia has a choice, live up to your heritage and reputation or welcome the religious hating right to power.