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Indonesia: Anti-Ahok supporters rally in Jakarta as FPI leader testifies at blasphemy trial01:28

Indonesia: Anti-Ahok supporters rally in Jakarta as FPI leader testifies at blasphemy trial

Indonesia, Jakarta
February 28, 2017 at 06:22 GMT +00:00 · Published

Scores of Islamist protesters rallied against Jakarta Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, commonly known as 'Ahok', outside the Indonesian Ministry of Agriculture in south Jakarta, Tuesday. Inside the courtroom the leader of the Islamic Defenders Front (FPI) Habib Rizieq Syihab testified as an expert witness.

Upon leaving the courtroom, Syihab cited further claims against Ahok, "During the meeting, Ahok said that he would make a public WIFI with the username 'Al Maidah' and password 'Kafir," before adding "With this evidence, I say to the judges that Ahok keeps on mocking Quran and that they should consider him guilty and that he must be punished."

The rally was heavily policed, with the FPI supporters being separated by barbed wire and a cordon containing dozens of police officers.

FPI supporters are demanding that a Muslim leads Jakarta as governor instead of incumbent Ahok, who has been accused of criticising his opponents' use of verses from the Quran during the Jakarta gubernatorial election campaign. If convicted, he could face five years in jail.

Criticism towards the Jakarta governor began after he implied that the Quran's Al Maidah 51 verse, focusing on Muslim alliances with Jews and Christians, could be used to justify the idea that Muslims should not vote for a Christian governor. Ahok's election campaign has ignited religious divisions within the country and he faces a blasphemy trial amid allegations he insulted the Koran. FPI and their allies have pressed for Purnama's incarceration for the alleged offences, with the governor's supporters claiming that he is a victim of anti-Chinese and anti-Christian sentiment in a Muslim majority city.

Indonesia: Anti-Ahok supporters rally in Jakarta as FPI leader testifies at blasphemy trial01:28
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Scores of Islamist protesters rallied against Jakarta Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, commonly known as 'Ahok', outside the Indonesian Ministry of Agriculture in south Jakarta, Tuesday. Inside the courtroom the leader of the Islamic Defenders Front (FPI) Habib Rizieq Syihab testified as an expert witness.

Upon leaving the courtroom, Syihab cited further claims against Ahok, "During the meeting, Ahok said that he would make a public WIFI with the username 'Al Maidah' and password 'Kafir," before adding "With this evidence, I say to the judges that Ahok keeps on mocking Quran and that they should consider him guilty and that he must be punished."

The rally was heavily policed, with the FPI supporters being separated by barbed wire and a cordon containing dozens of police officers.

FPI supporters are demanding that a Muslim leads Jakarta as governor instead of incumbent Ahok, who has been accused of criticising his opponents' use of verses from the Quran during the Jakarta gubernatorial election campaign. If convicted, he could face five years in jail.

Criticism towards the Jakarta governor began after he implied that the Quran's Al Maidah 51 verse, focusing on Muslim alliances with Jews and Christians, could be used to justify the idea that Muslims should not vote for a Christian governor. Ahok's election campaign has ignited religious divisions within the country and he faces a blasphemy trial amid allegations he insulted the Koran. FPI and their allies have pressed for Purnama's incarceration for the alleged offences, with the governor's supporters claiming that he is a victim of anti-Chinese and anti-Christian sentiment in a Muslim majority city.

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