Blasphemy Conviction for Christian Governor Could Be Sign of Deteriorating Religious Freedom in Indonesia. (Heritage).
Jakarta’s Chinese Christian governor, Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, more popularly known as Ahok, was found guilty of blasphemy by a panel of five judges in Indonesia and sentenced to two years in prison.
This latest application of blasphemy laws calls into question the commitment to religious freedom in a country often held up as an example of tolerance.
Blasphemy charges against Ahok originally were brought during the contentious re-election cycle when he suggested that Muslims were deceived if they believed that al-Maidah 51, a chapter and verse in the Quran, said that Muslims could not vote for or be governed by a non-Muslim leader.
As a result of Ahok’s statement in a viral video—which are often doctored or misrepresented—and massive protests it provoked, he received a two-year prison term.
According to a report by Amnesty International, blasphemy laws in Indonesia address two different acts: deviation from the six official religions and defamation of these religions. A presidential decree created the blasphemy laws. Article 1 states:
Every individual is prohibited in public from intentionally conveying, endorsing, or attempting to gain public support in the interpretation of a certain religion embraced by the people of Indonesia or undertaking religious-based activities that resemble the religious activities of the religion in question, where such interpretation and activities are in deviation of the basic teachings of the religion.According to Amnesty International, between 2005 and 2014 at least 106 people were prosecuted and convicted on blasphemy charges. Hmmm.........Islamic human rights don't allow any criticism of Islam. Read the full story here.