Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Restrictions on the Ahmadiyah in Indonesia a Warning for Other Religious Minorities

protestindo A story that those of us who still read the newspaper will probably overlook and one that most of the rest of the media will likely never even cover is Indonesia's decision yesterday to restrict the religious activities of the Ahmadiyah, a minority Islamic sect.  Most Sunnis and Shiites consider the Ahmadiyah heretics, although Saudi Arabia actually allows them to go on the hajj.

The Ahmadiyah are persecuted in many Muslim countries.  Militants in Indonesia had actually called for their complete ban, but the government chose instead to rule that Ahmadiyah followers are allowed to worship in their homes and mosques, but they must not preach or try to convert others.  It should be noted that the Ahmadijah sect is highly evangelistic.

This ruling demonstrates that the Indonesian government is susceptible to threats and pressure from aggressive Islamic militants and shown willing to restrict the freedoms of religious minorities if so threatened. I can easily see the day coming when Muslim militants will demand similar restrictions placed on Christians.  What assurances do we have that the Indonesian government won't cave in again?

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