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Today's Headlines Islam

  • Society, Government Object to Homecoming of Indonesian Islamic State Sympathizers

    Society, Government Object to Homecoming of Indonesian Islamic State Sympathizers

    In the first half of February 2020 the ‘Indonesian Islamic State (IS) returnees’ were a hot topic in local Indonesian media. Based on international reports, 689 Indonesian citizens have travelled to Syria (or Iraq) in support of the battle of Islamic terrorist group IS (albeit most experts assume that the real number is much higher). The problem now is that many among these 689 Indonesians – including children and women – have become stranded abroad, mostly in Syria and Turkey.

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  • Indonesia-Australia Free Trade Deal in Jeopardy over Israel Embassy Comments

    Indonesia-Australia Free Trade Deal in Jeopardy over Israel Embassy Comments

    Nearly one year after US President Donald Trump confirmed the US would recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison followed suit by suggesting that Australia plans to make the same risky move. Morrison said Australia is considering to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and to move its embassy to the holy city.

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  • Public Holidays in Indonesia: Idul Adha, Day of Sacrifice

    Public Holidays in Indonesia: Idul Adha, Day of Sacrifice

    On Friday (01/09) markets are closed in Indonesia as the people celebrate Idul Adha, the day of sacrifice. On this public holiday people commemorate a story that is known in both Muslim and Christian circles, namely Ibrahim (Abraham)'s willingness to sacrifice his son, Ismael, to God. At the last moment, however, God intervened and told Ibrahim to sacrifice a sheep instead of Ismael. Ibrahim's act proved his commitment to God.

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  • Can Indonesia Become a Global Force in Halal Food Products?

    Can Indonesia Become a Global Force in Halal Food Products?

    I Wayan Dipta, Deputy Production and Marketing at Indonesia's Cooperatives and Small & Medium Enterprises Ministry, believes Indonesian halal food products (halal refers to those products that are produced in accordance with Islamic law) have great potential on the international market over the next 15-20 years due to the growing number of Muslims worldwide.

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  • Politics of Indonesia: Jakarta Governor Sentenced to 2 Yrs in Prison

    Politics of Indonesia: Jakarta Governor Sentenced to 2 Yrs in Prison

    This is a sad day for Indonesia. Incumbent Jakarta Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama (better known by his nickname Ahok) was found guilty of blasphemy by the North Jakarta District Court and sentenced to two years in prison. After the verdict Ahok was immediately taken into custody, implying Deputy Governor Djarot Saiful Hidayat now replaces Ahok until the end of his term in October 2017.

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  • Islam in Indonesia: Hasyim Asy'Ari Grand Mosque Opened in Jakarta

    Islam in Indonesia: Hasyim Asy'Ari Grand Mosque Opened in West Jakarta

    A new large mosque - named Hasyim Asy'Ari Grand Mosque - was opened on Saturday (15/04) on Jalan Daan Mogot in West Jakarta. At the inauguration Indonesian President Joko Widodo emphasized the new mosque has to become a friendly and moderate Islamic symbol in Jakarta and Indonesia, acknowledging the diversity and pluralistic nature of the country, and strengthening the spirit of moderate and tolerant Islam. Although Indonesia has a clear Muslim-majority population, it is also home to millions of Christians, Catholics, Hindus and Buddhists.

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  • Terrorism in Indonesia: Bandung Bomb, No Casualties, Suspect Shot

    Terrorism in Indonesia: Bandung Bomb, No Casualties, 1 Suspect Shot

    Panic arose in Bandung (West Java) after a low-explosive, homemade bomb exploded on Monday morning (27/02) around 09:00 am local time near Pandawa Park in Cicendo. Indonesian police said there were no casualties. The man who allegedly detonated the bomb fled to an urban community office building before being shot by police about two hours after the explosion (and rushed to a local hospital where he is currently being treated). A second suspect, a woman, fled on a motorcycle. Police is still looking for her.

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  • Politics in Indonesia: New Anti-Ahok Rally on Tuesday

    Politics in Indonesia: New Anti-Ahok Rally on Tuesday

    A new rally, organized by the Indonesian Muslim Forum (FUI), will be staged on Tuesday (21/02) in front of Jakarta's national legislative complex on Jalan Gatot Subroto in Senayan (South Jakarta). An estimated 10,000 protesters will urge authorities (in this so-called "212 rally") to suspend Jakarta Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama (Ahok). Ahok is currently on trial for blasphemy based on a manipulated video that surfaced on social media last year.

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  • Live Update Jakarta Gubernatorial Election: Quick Count Results

    Live Update Jakarta Gubernatorial Election: Quick Count Results

    Starting from 7:00 am local Jakarta time on Wednesday (15/02), the capital city of Indonesia is voting for their next governor. There are more than 13,000 polling places spread across Jakarta to accommodate the 7.1 million eligible voters. Although actually in more than 100 provinces, cities and districts the regional heads are being elected today, most attention goes to Jakarta where ethnic and religious tensions are high due to the participation of incumbent Jakarta Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama (better known as Ahok), a Christian, ethnic Chinese politician who is being prosecuted for blasphemy.

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  • Stocks & Rupiah Indonesia: Trump's Travel Ban Causes Uncertainty

    Stocks & Currency Indonesia: Trump's Travel Ban Causes Uncertainty

    Shares in Asia (as well as US stock futures) are trading lower, while the US dollar is sliding on Monday (30/01) after US President Donald Trump announced to curb immigration into the USA. This move sparked wide criticism at home and abroad, while giving rise to uncertainty about future (unpredictable) US political and economic policies. Since Friday (27/01) refugees from seven predominantly Muslim countries - Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen - are banned (for 90 days) from entering the USA.

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Latest Columns Islam

  • FPI Leader Shihab Named Suspect in Pancasila Insult Case

    FPI Leader Shihab Named Suspect in Pancasila Insult Case

    Rizieq Shihab, leader of the Islamic Defenders Front (in Indonesian: Front Pembela Islam, or FPI), has been named a suspect of insulting the Pancasila (Indonesia's state ideology) by the West Java branch of Indonesian Police on Monday (30/01). Sukmawati Sukarnoputri, daughter of Indonesia's first president Sukarno, had filed a police report against Shihab after a speech surfaced in which the latter insulted and criticized the Pancasila as well as national hero Sukarno.

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  • Politics & Law in Indonesia: Ahok's Blasphemy Trial

    Politics & Law in Indonesia: Ahok's Blasphemy Trial

    A high profile trial is about to start in Indonesia. On Tuesday (13/12) incumbent Jakarta Governor Basuki Cahaya Purnama (better known as Ahok), a Christian of Chinese descent, will visit the Jakarta Court for the first day of his trial. Ahok is prosecuted for blasphemy, an offense that carries a maximum prison sentence of five years in Indonesia. After the Vietnamese iced coffee murder case, this is another huge court case followed not only by the Indonesian people, but also by the international community that is concerned about rising intolerance in Indonesia.

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  • Safety Alert Indonesia: Stay Clear of Friday's Rally in Jakarta

    Safety Alert Indonesia: Stay Clear of Friday's Rally in Jakarta

    Again we advise people, specifically expats, to stay away from Central Jakarta on Friday (02/12) when another massive rally is scheduled to take place. This second big protest rally, aimed against incumbent Jakarta Governor Basuki Cahaya Purnama (better known as Ahok), may attract more than 150,000 protesters and could become the scene of riots and other forms of violence in the capital city of Indonesia. Many businesses will keep their doors shut on Friday to anticipate the unpredictable situation.

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  • Islamic Sharia Law in Aceh: 13 Indonesians Caned

    Islamic Sharia Law in Aceh: 13 Indonesians Caned

    A total of 13 Indonesians were caned (a punishment under the Islamic Sharia law) at a local mosque in Banda Aceh in Indonesia's province of Aceh on Monday (17/10). These people (seven men and six women) allegedly exhibited behavior that is not allowed by Aceh's local Sharia law. Such behavior includes "too close contact" between unmarried people (such as touching and kissing). Over the past two days pictures of the caning spread in international media, accompanied by concerns about this brutal punishment and the state of human rights in Indonesia.

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  • Radical Islam in Indonesia: Lone Wolf Attack in Catholic Church

    Radical Islam in Indonesia: Lone Wolf Attack in Catholic Church

    The 17-year-old Ivan Armadi who tried to kill a Catholic priest and detonate a self-made bomb during the Sunday service (28/08) in a church in Medan (North Sumatra) is one example of the Islamic State sympathizers that are present in Indonesia. Although the police investigation indicates that there are no direct links between Armadi and existing militant networks within Indonesia or abroad, the case shows that there are so-called "lone-wolves" in Indonesia who are inspired by radical Islamic doctrine and can learn to make bombs from the Internet.

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  • Indonesia & Malaysia to Develop Global Center for Islamic Capital Markets

    Indonesia & Malaysia to Develop Global Center for Islamic Capital Markets

    The stock exchanges of Indonesia and Malaysia agreed to join hands to develop a World Sharia Stock Market Center. Both sides signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on Tuesday (02/08) at the 12th World Islamic Economic Forum (WIEF) in Jakarta. Both exchanges - the Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX) and the Bursa Malaysia - are eager to establish a global benchmark for Islamic capital markets. This is part of an effort to broaden the usage and availability of Islamic liquidity and products worldwide.

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  • Islam & Indonesian Culture: Impact of Idul Fitri on the Economy

    Islam & Indonesian Culture: Impact of Idul Fitri on the Economy

    Next week Indonesia's financial and stock markets are closed for Idul Fitri (also known as Lebaran or Eid al-Fitr), the celebrations that mark the end of the holy Islamic fasting month (Ramadan). As usual, during the Ramadan month (that started in early June) business activities in Indonesia start to slow and this slowdown will reach its "peak" during the Idul Fitri holiday, a national holiday (from Monday 4 July to Friday 8 July) when some 17.6 million Indonesians who live and work in the bigger cities will return to their places of origin for a couple of days (a tradition called mudik).

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  • Can Indonesia Become the Mecca of Islamic Fashion?

    Can Indonesia Become the Mecca of Islamic Fashion?

    Ahead of the Islamic Ramadan and Idul Fitri celebrations, consumption tends to increase in Indonesia. One of the products that is searched for by Indonesian consumers (those who adhere to Islam) is Muslim fashion such as clothes and the veil. In fact, the Indonesian government wants the nation to become Asia's center for Muslim fashion by the year 2018 and the world's Muslim fashion leader by 2020. Muslim clothes are also envisaged to become a key export product. Currently, Indonesia's Muslim fashion exports are still rather insignificant.

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  • Indonesia's Conventional Banks to Spin Off Islamic Units by 2024

    Indonesia's Conventional Banks to Spin Off Islamic Units by 2024

    Indonesia's Financial Services Authority (OJK), the government agency that regulates and supervises the nation's financial services sector, is preparing a new regulation that requires conventional financial institutions in Indonesia to spin off their Islamic financial units before 17 October 2024. Islamic finance or Islamic banking is a type of banking that is in accordance to the principles of sharia (Islamic law). Based on the regulation, those financial institutions that generate at least 50 percent of their capital through Islamic finance have to comply with the new rule.

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  • Islamic Banking in Indonesia Explained: New Rules & Foreign Ownership

    Islamic Banking in Indonesia Explained: New Rules & Foreign Ownership

    Indonesian financial authorities are considering to ease foreign ownership limits for local Islamic banks and to promote new sharia-compliant financial tools in an effort to make the Islamic finance industry more attractive to foreign investors and the Indonesian population. Despite having the world’s largest Muslim population and being a dynamic emerging economy, Indonesia plays only a very minor role in the global Islamic banking industry. Meanwhile, domestically, Islamic banking still seriously lags behind conventional banking.

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