Islamistiske hardlinere nektet å gi seg og demonstrasjonen mot guvernøren av Jakarta ble voldelig fredag. Islamistene mener guvernør Ahok, som er kineser og kristen, har fornærmet islam.

Ahok ble filmet mens han siterte fra Koranen om at ikke-muslimer ikke kan inneha embeter. Det ble tolket som en fornærmelse. Spøken var på Ahoks egen bekostning, men det spilte ingen rolle for demonstrantene.

The accusation of blasphemy against Jakarta Gov. Basuki «Ahok» Tjahaja Purnama, an ethnic Chinese and minority Christian who is an ally of Jokowi, has galvanized Jokowi’s political opponents in the Muslim-majority nation of 250 million, and given a notorious group of hard-liners a national stage.

The Islamic Defenders Front, a vigilante group that wants to impose Shariah law, is demanding Ahok’s arrest after a video circulated online in which he joked to an audience about a passage in the Quran that could be interpreted as prohibiting Muslims from accepting non-Muslims as leaders. The governor has apologized for the comment and met with police.

Amar said the situation became uncontrollable when protesters broke through police barricades and security barriers in an attempt to enter the presidential palace before they were stopped by police firing tear gas. Three police and military trucks were burnt down and 18 vehicles damaged in the violence.

Indonesia har 250 millioner innbyggere, de fleste muslimer.