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Thursday, 28 June 2012

Indonesian Reform Triggered Clash Between Race And Religion

The era of Indonesia's post-reformation in May 1998 that was believed that would bring change to the country somehow did not end with the way its people might have wanted.

After the success of street protests to bring Suharto down, the close relationship between  multiple ethnic and religion which was good then began to deteriorate because of widening prejudice.

Society began to fight against one another. Small cases turn big for no valid reason.

On November 21, 1998 for example, following a fight between the child of a Village Chief of Ketampang, Jakarta with several gambling premises employees were among the early events associated with violence between Muslims and Christians from Ambon, Maluku.

From there, a group of 400 gangsters from Ambon has been sent by the Chinese owners at dawn to the village Ketapang to cause trouble and damaging the houses the people there.

Other than injuring the area which had a majority Muslim in the population, some mosques were damaged as well in the surprise attack.

Other residents were aware of the situation then began to fight back and finally drove the Ambon ethnic gangs away.

But the next morning, thousands of Muslims from different regions and mass rioting in the area raided the China Town Jalan Hayam Wuruk and Jalan Gajah Mada.

After performing the riots there, a large group of Muslims then headed towards Jalan Zainul Ariffin, a place where a number of Ambon tribe people work and they then began to kill some of Ambon people.

In the middle of the riot, the raged mob also set fire to and destroyed a number of churches and Christian missionary schools.

The Indonesian military finally intervened and managed to defuse the violence followed by a move to repatriate part of their Ambon employees to Maluku.

After that event, the relationship between Muslims and Christians Indonesia Ambon tribes had gotten intense.

Within less than a year later, clashes between Muslim and Christians in Maluku occurred on a large scale lasted until 2002.

So, it is proven that reform is not worth it. In reality, it would only lead to chaos, especially to ethnic and religious groups in Indonesia.

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