Jayapura, Jubi/Antara – Religious leaders in the Papua province have agreed to settle the recent incident in Tolikara district by traditional wisdom.
“We agreed and approved that firstly we will settle the Tolikara incident by way of traditional wisdom peacefully and safely now and in the future,” president of the Evangelical Church in Indonesia (GIDI), Dorman Wandikmo, said at the office of the Inter-Religious Communication Forum (FKUB) here on Wednesday (29/7/2015).
After the meeting initiated by FKUB Papua Dorman said they have also agreed to ask the regional police to stop the legal process now underway of the incident.
“Secondly, all detained in connection with the Tolikara incident must immediately be released and we do not want any more detention nor further legal process,” he said.
The chairman of the Nadhlatul Ulama chapter of Papua province, Toni Wanggai, said he had agreed that the Tolikara incident was not a religious issue.
“Firstly we wish to tell the whole people of Indonesia that the incident in Tolikara was not a religious conflict but it merely happened because of miscommunication with regard to the implementation of a religious rite,” he said.
He said that no house of prayer had been set on fire but the fire that had happened on it was a mere effect from a fire affecting other structures.
He said he hoped the legal process that was currently being carried out by the regional police could be immediately stopped as the problem would be settled using traditional wisdom existing in Tolikara.
“The legal process by the Papua regional police had to be stopped because it would not settle the root cause of the problem and would even protract its settlement,” he said.
“We, Muslims in Papua, agreed to settle using traditional and local cultural wisdom,” he said.
A group of people believed to be members of the Evangelical Church of Indonesia (GIDI) stormed Muslims who were performing an Eid prayer on Friday.
According to the chairman of the Communion of Evangelical Churches and Institutions in Indonesia, Roni Mandang, there was chaos after police officers fired shots at them, which led to the torching of kiosks. Flames from these fires spread to the Islamic house of prayer, once it was known that a person had been shot dead.
Moreover, Spokesman for the Public Information Division of the National Police Senior Commissioner Suharsono said that the police had opened fire to control rioters and to keep them away from the mosque.
It was later confirmed that one person was killed and 11 others wounded in the incident.
The country was gripped with tension following the incident.
Two suspects have been caught in connection with the incident in Tolikara admitting they have pelted stones at the Muslims performing Idul Fitri prayers on July 17, a police officer stated.
The suspects, identified as AK and JW, were arrested on July 24 for their alleged involvement in the attack, Spokesman of the Papua provincial police headquarters Senior Commissioner Patrige recently said.
Based on witnesses confessions and a video footage it was revealed that the two suspects were provocateurs. One of them had even used a loudspeaker to instigate the angry mob, he revealed. (*)