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VP tells police to be firm against mosque attackers
Vice President Jusuf Kalla wants the police to arrest those who attacked the followers of Ahmadiyah, an Islamic sect, in Kuningan, West Java, on Tuesday.
”I have spoken to the police and told them to be firm against anyone who attacked the Ahmadiyah,” Kalla told reporters after the Idul Adha prayers on Thursday.
The police, he added, have the duty to ensure people could practice their faith.
Dozens of people were injured when a group calling itself the Anti-Ahmadiyah Movement clashed with residents in the housing compound inhabited mostly by followers of the Ahmadiyah, an Islamic sect with origins in India, on Tuesday.
A mosque and eight houses were burned down in the attack. The area is now being heavily guarded by police but no one had yet been arrested.
The Indonesian Ulema Council, representing the mainstream Islam, has issued a fatwa declaring Ahmadiyah to be a heretic and un-Islamic.
The religious edict has encouraged vigilante Islamic groups to attack the followers and their property. Prior to Kuningan, there had been attacks against Ahmadiyah followers near Jakarta and in Lombok island in West Nusa Tenggara province in the past two years. There is an estimated 400,000 followers of Ahmadiyah in Indonesia.
The fatwa is not a license to attack the followers of Ahmadiyah, Kalla said.