European Parliament adopts resolution on attacks against minorities in Indonesia

July 8, 2011

New Malden, United Kingdom, July 8 (ENInews)--The European Parliament
adopted a resolution on human rights in Indonesia on 7 July, making reference
to attacks on religious minorities such as Christians and the Ahmadiyya
Muslim community, according to a news release from Christian Solidarity
Worldwide. 

The move by the European Parliament follows a resolution in the UK
Parliament, a letter of concern signed by members of Congress in the US, and a
resolution in the Swedish Parliament, all highlighting the violent persecution
of minorities in Indonesia, said the release. 

The European Parliament resolution expresses "grave concern at the
incidents of violence against religious minorities, particularly Ahmadi Muslims,
Christians, Baha'is and Buddhists...at the local blasphemy, heresy and
religious defamation by-laws, which are open to misuse, and at the 2008 Joint
Ministerial Decree prohibiting the dissemination of Ahmadiyya Muslim
teachings," calling on the Indonesian authorities to "repeal or revise them."

According to the release, the resolution also applauds the work of civil
society groups in Indonesia, including Muslim, Christian and secular think
tanks, human rights organizations and counter-extremism organizations
promoting religious freedom and human rights, and pledges support for those
"actively promoting democracy, tolerance and peaceful co-existence between
different ethnic and religious groups."

Mitro Repo, a Finnish member of the European Parliament, said "While
Indonesia's national ideology, 'Pancasila,' has been a great example of
enshrining pluralism, cultural harmony, religious freedom and social justice, there
is a deep concern that the blasphemy, heresy and religious defamation
by-laws are open to misuse. Such laws do not have a place in a state that truly
respects human rights and engages in an open dialogue with its civil
society." He added, "Indonesia should be open to cooperation with the
international community so that emerging problems can be preempted."