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Ahmadiyah attackers surrender to police after ulema intervene
Nana Rukmana, The Jakarta Post, Majalengka
At least 49 people who attacked a mosque and houses belonging to the Ahmadiyah sect in Argapura district in Majalengka regency, West Java, have surrendered to the police.
The 49 attackers, named suspects after the attacks, surrendered Saturday with the help of the Majalengka chapter of the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI).
Majalengka Police chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Gagah Suseno said Sunday that the people who surrendered to the police came from a number of villages at Argapura, including Sadasari, Gunung Herang, Jingkang, Haurseah and Sukadana.
When they came to surrender they were accompanied by nearly 400 of their neighbors, traveling on six buses and dozens of motorcycles.
Gagah said that based on the results of an investigation, the attacks were sparked two weeks ago by anger at Ahmadiyah sect members who violated an agreement not to perform their religious activities in Majalengka.
“As (the Ahmadiyah members) were stubborn, the attackers concluded they had violated the agreement. They were so angry that they attacked them,” Gagah said.
Gagah said that the 49 suspects would be processed under Article 170 of the Criminal Code for damage and violence. “Even (though they) voluntarily surrendered, the legal process will still be imposed on them,” he said.
Gagah said that the surrender was made possible after the MUI together with local ulema approached the men.
“The role of the ulema was magnificent in convincing the attackers to surrender,” Gagah said.
Maman Imanulhaq, an ulema and noted member of Indonesia’s largest Muslim organization, Nahdlatul Ulama, in West Java, said, “We strive to help the police in approaching the attackers.”
Manam said the legal process would continue so that responsibility for the damage could be shared. “We’ll abide by the legal process of the police,” he said.