Video shows 15-year-old boy harassed for allegedly insulting FPI leader
The Jakarta Post
A viral video showing a 15-year-old boy being intimidated and harassed by a group of people claiming to be members of the Islam Defenders Front (FPI) for allegedly insulting their fugitive leader, Rizieq Shihab, has sparked concerns amid the ongoing online persecution of the cleric’s critics.
In the video, a group of people can be seen coercing the boy, who is of Chinese descent, to sign a statement of apology for slandering Rizieq, who was recently named a suspect in a pornography case.
The boy’s hands were shaking when he was holding the paper. “You better tell your friends of your ethnicity to never do it again, so this will not happen again,” one of the men said in the video.
The man tells the teenager that Rizieq is respected not only by FPI members but also by the whole Muslim community.
Another man is later seen slapping the boy's mouth two times.
Damar Juniarto, the regional coordinator for the Southeast Asia Freedom of Expression Network, said the incident took place in East Jakarta and was clearly part of a growing trend of persecution of social media users by the hard-line Islamist group.
FPI spokesman Slamet Maarif said he was not aware of the incident, adding that the FPI leadership had ordered group members to report those who insulted Islam and Muslim clerics to the police.
The East Jakarta Police said they are now investigating the video. (rdi/dis/ary)
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