Violations of religious freedom increase in 2016: Komnas HAM
The Jakarta Post
The National Commission for Human Rights (Komnas HAM) has recorded a steady increase of violations of religious freedom in the last three years.
Komnas HAM’s faith freedom desk coordinator Jayadi Damanik revealed that throughout 2016, his commission had received 97 reports related to violations of religious freedom. The figure is higher than in 2014 and 2015, in which the desk received 74 and 87 reports, respectively.
“The number, of course, doesn’t necessarily reflect the actual circumstance because there were cases that went unreported,” Jayadi said at his office in Jakarta on Tuesday during Komnas HAM's year-end report on religious freedom.
According to the report, the two provinces with the highest number of cases were West Java with 21 and Jakarta with 19, which also topped the list last year. North Sulawesi comes as a surprise for assuming third rank with 11 reports. In 2015, Komnas HAM only received one complaint from that province.
Of the total numbers, prohibition and vandalism against houses of worship topped the list with 44 reports, followed by prohibiting religious followers to practice their religions with 19 reports.
“Threatening and intimidating religious groups was the third most frequent report in 2016 with 12 cases. This indicates that threats and intimidation have increased. In 2015, we only received seven reports,” Jayadi said. (dmr)
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