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Asean & Global Updates
POSTED | 20:56 PM | 05-02-2016

Jokowi turns to Islamic groups to fight radicalism

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo asked for the help of Islamic groups on Friday (5 Feb 2016) in order to tackle the spread of radical ideology in Indonesia, in the wake of last month’s terrorist attack in the capital city, The Jakarta Post reported.

Jokowi met separately with representatives of the country’s largest Muslim organization Nahdlatul Ulama (NU) and the Islamic Dakwah Indonesia Institution (LDII) at the State Palace on Friday to discuss deradicalization programs.

NU executive council chairman Said Aqil Siradj said Jokowi asked the NU clerics to intensify preaching aimed at curbing the dissemination of radical teachings in Indonesia. “The President asked us to always assert the issues of terrorism, radicalism and drugs in our preaching,” Agil was quoted as saying by kompas.com.

The biggest Muslim organization has long preached about peaceful Islam and is involved in deradicalization programs throughout the country. Deradicalization in Indonesia was important to prevent the escalation of tension between Sunnis and Shiites taking place in Indonesia, Agil added.

Similarly, LDII chairman Abdullah Syam expressed the organization’s support for deradicalization, saying it also strongly rejected radical ideology, terrorism and drug misuse. “We are against everything that contradicts Pancasila (national ideology) and Islam’s ‘rahmatan lil alamin’ (blessing for the universe),” he said.

Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Luhut Pandjaitan and Religious Affairs Minister Lukman Hakim Syaifuddin accompanied Jokowi when he received the visits from both organizations’ representatives. Luhut said Jokowi wanted to develop cooperation with Islamic community organizations to help the socialization of deradicalization and prevent drug misuse.

Jokowi would invite other Islamic community organizations for talks in the near future.

The government is strengthening its deradicalization programs after a terrorist attack in Jakarta last month that left eight people dead and injured dozens more. One of the four dead terrorists had been sent to prison for terrorism acts in the past, said The Jakarta Post.
       

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