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Home Worldwide Indonesia June, 2011 After Banten attack, Ahmadi…
After Banten attack, Ahmadi could face 6 years in prison
Jakarta Post, Indonesia
CITYThu, 06/09/2011 8:00 AM
After Banten attack, Ahmadi could face 6 years in prison
Hans David Tampubolon, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta

A prosecutor is asking that Deden Sujana, a member of Jamaah Ahmadiyah Indonesia and one of the victims in a recent attack on Ahmadiyah followers in Cikeusik, Banten, be sentenced to six years in prison.

The attorney made the request during a trial at the Serang District Court in Banten on Wednesday.

Deden was accused of violating a clause in the Criminal Code (KUHP) on provocation.

The attorney said Deden also violated a KUHP clause on opposing police officers and a clause on minor abuse.

In February, a group of Ahmadis in Cikeusik were assaulted by a crowd of hard-line Islamists. Three Ahmadis were killed.

Deden, whose home and property were attacked by the hard-liners, suffered an injury to his arm.

In a video recording of the attack, Deden was seen punching an attacker. It is that footage that is the basis for the accusations that he was a provocateur.

Deden’s lawyer, Kiagus Ahmad, said the charges against his client were nothing but an effort to criminalize someone who was actually one of the victims.

“The masses ran amok in Deden’s backyard. According to the law, if someone wants to enter private property then he or she must ask for permission. The masses went in without any permission and forced Deden to throw a punch in self-defense,” Kiagus said.

Kiagus also rejected the prosecutor’s claim that Deden provoked nearby residents by bringing Ahmadis to the neighborhood.

“Deden heard reports that his house and private property would become the target of an attack. He then took the initiative to secure his assets. He cannot be blamed for doing that,” Kiagus said.

Kiagus also said that Deden had never chosen to disobey an order from a police officer.

“The police wanted my client to evacuate, but, my client did not do that because he saw that the preparations to secure the Ahmadis from the angry mob during the evacuation by the police officers was not enough,” he said.

Ahmadis have been the target of violent attacks from hard-line Islamic groups in Indonesia since 2005.

Ahmadiyah has existed in the country since the 1950s. The religious group, which says it is part of Islam, is considered heretical by some Islamic groups because it does not recognize Muhammad as the last prophet.

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