The Jakarta Post
Through a voice recording on Saturday, the leader of the hard-line Islam Defenders Front (FPI), Rizieq Shihab, called to the 212 reunion rally goers for a sharia-based Indonesia.
“Through the alumni of the rally, I want to loudly ask for all Muslims in Indonesia to fight for a sharia-based NKRI [Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia],” he said in the recorded sermon played at the gathering at the National Monument Park as reported by Tempo.co.
Rizieq was reportedly staying in Saudi Arabia following investigations of his legal cases. The West Java Police had named him a suspect in the defamation case against Pancasila in January, and he was also named a suspect by the Jakarta Police for pornography related to steamy chat messages he was allegedly exchanging with a woman named Firza Husein in May. Jakarta Police had since put him on their wanted list as he failed to answer summonses.
Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan attended the gathering along with politician Amin Rais and Deputy Speakers of the House of Representatives Fadli Zon and Fahri Hamzah.
The reunion rally was held to commemorate last year’s large-scale protest against then-Jakarta Governor Basuki “Ahok” Tjahaja Purnama over his blasphemous remarks.
National Police chief Gen. Tito Karnavian said on Thursday the event might have had political motives.
“It could be related to the upcoming politics in 2018 and 2019,” he said as reported by Tempo.co, but did not give further details.
Indonesia will concurrently hold its third regional elections in 171 regions next year followed by the legislative and presidential elections in 2019. (nmn/rin)