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Ahmadis Should Declare a New Religion: Politician
Anita Rachman | February 10, 2011
Hundreds of people from the Islamic Community Forum or FUI, rallying for the disbandment of Ahmadiyah sect at Hotel Indonesia traffic circle in May, 2009. (JG Photo/Safir Makki)
Deputy House Speaker Priyo Budi Santoso says followers of an Islamic sect deemed heretic by mainstream Indonesian Muslims should declare a new religion.
The calls from the Golkar legislator echo those made a day earlier by Imran Muchtar, from the ruling Democratic Party.
He said if followers of Ahmadiyah could not “repent, recognize their mistake and come back to mainstream Islam,” then they should “leave Islam and declare a new religion.”
Priyo, speaking on Thursday, said declaring Ahmadiyah a new religion would end the growing conflict.
“I suggest [Ahmadis] declare Ahmadiyah as a new religion because of the complicated problem,” he said.
Priyo said that even though Ahmadiyah was banned in a number of Middle Eastern countries, he disagreed that Indonesia should adopt similar policies.
“No, their belief should not be banned here; I don’t have a heart for that,” he said. “So, [to] Ahmadis, don’t hesitate to declare Ahmadiyah as a new religion.”
He said that if Ahmadiyah was established as a new, then followers must not be persecuted and allowed to hold religious services.