‘The State Should Not Be Defeated by Thugs:’ Tifatul
Communication and Information Minister Tifatul Sembiring said on Wednesday that the government should not be defeated by groups that resort to violence.
“The state should not be defeated by thugs,” Tifatul told Jakarta Globe.
Tifatul said his plea should apply to what he called radical organizations, including the Islamic Defenders Front (FPI), who he accused of resorting to threats of force while wearing Islamic garb.
“It is alright as long as they do not disturb the public; but if they violate the law, they should be charged,” Tifatul said, adding that although Islam is the religion practiced by the majority in Indonesia, followers should show tolerance toward minority groups.
With the start of Ramadan this week, the FPI has threatened to raid nightclubs, massage parlors and shops that sell alcoholic beverages.
Tifatul said that given the situation, the police should pro-actively regulate such establishments before FPI institutes their own “street justice.”
“Law enforcement should take action against brothels, or [people] who are drunk in public . . . because that is illegal. Otherwise, the [FPI] will do it their own way.”