Indonesia: Radical Muslim group offers reward for alleged agitator
Jakarta, 24 June (AKI) – A radical Muslim group in Indonesia has offered a 10,000-dollar reward for the capture of a man who allegedly used a gun to threaten people at a rally for religious freedom.
“Our aim is pure,” said Fadholy El Muhir, the leader of radical Islamic group, Forum Betwai Rampung or FBR told Adnkronos International (AKI).
“We want to help the police,” he said.
Members of FBR and another radical organisation, the Islamic Defenders Front or FPI reportedly attacked people who were marching in a rally in support of religious freedom in the capital, Jakarta, on 1 June.
Television footage and photos of the rally showed a young man threatening the demonstrators with a gun and the FBR said that the image has led to a strong reaction against the group and the FPI.
They decided to offer a reward of 10,000 dollars for his capture.
“The man with the gun is obviously a troublemaker and he has not been arrested,” said Muhir. “We will not harm him but we want him to be arrested and to speak,” he said.
Muhir said that the money for the reward was collected by members of his group.
The incident at the rally sparked anger in Indonesia where there have been calls for the president to shut down the FPI, the group that led the attack.
However the authorities only arrested 10 members of the radical group.
The FPI and the FBR are among the radical Islamic groups that have formed in Indonesia since the end of the regime of former President Suharto in 1998.
The groups were reportedly formed with the help of the Indonesian armed forces that used such groups to counter the student movement that was calling for reform in Indonesia at the time.
Some have suggested that the groups’ claims that they are “defenders of Islam” is nothing but a cover and that the two groups, like others, are simply recruiting thugs.
However, they could influence Indonesia, where more than 85 percent of the 240 million people are Muslims.