Date: December 28, 2012
By BosNewsLife Asia Service
JAKARTA, INDONESIA (BosNewsLife)-- Several Christians in Indonesia were recovering of shock Wednesday, December 26, after Muslims threw rotten eggs, manure and bags with urine at Christians trying to celebrate Christmas, witnesses said.
Over 200 Indonesian Muslims were involved in attacking believers who planned to hold a church service near empty land where they hope to build a church in Jejalen Jaya village, about 30-kilometers east of the capital Jakarta, officials said.
The church is opposed by local Muslims and the district government barred the project in 2009.
Since then, worshipers from the Filadelfia Batak Christian Protestant Church have held Sunday services under scorching sun outside the property.
Andri Ananta, a local police chief on Jakarta's outskirts, told reporters that some 380 police and military personnel, including an anti-riot squad were deployed to the area on Christmas Day.
"We tried our best to avoid any clash and the Christians agreed to leave," he said, after men and women wearing Muslim headscarf, with small children in tow -- reportedly blocked the road and threw garbage at the Christians.
Muslims also prevented Christians of celebrating Christmas in the town of Bogor, where crowds blocked a church, Indonesian media reported.,
Police also reported other incidents, including the discovery of a bomb at a church in Poso city on Sulawesi island.
Experts dismantled the device in time, police said.
Most other church services in the region continued as planned, but the incidents underscored mounting concerns among Christians about tensions with Muslim hardliners and militants.
Indonesia's constitution guarantees freedom of religion but rights groups and church officials claim violence against Christians and other religious minorities has increased since 2008.
Ninety percent of Indonesia's population of 240 million identify themselves as Muslim, making it the world largest Islamic nation.