Indonesia’s capital of Jakarta is electing a new governor. The most promising candidate is a member of a Christian minority, but for months he has been the target of radical Islamist attacks. A test of the political atmosphere in the country.
In the Indonesian capital of Jakarta, the governor election has been the cause of month-long unrest. The most promising candidate and incumbent governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama has been attacked for being a Christian in the predominantly Muslim country. Indonesia, the most populous Muslim country in the world, has been a secular democracy for 20 years. Its constitution guarantees religious freedom and protects its many minority groups: Muslim sects, Hindus and Christians. The Indonesian form of Islam is considered to be liberal and tolerant, and in the past it was not a problem to elect a non-Muslim politician. But for some years, hardline Islamists from the Arab region have been gaining ground in the country. With their strict interpretation of the Quran, they are placing Indonesian Islam and religious minorities under increasing pressure. A landslide victory was originally predicted for the Christian candidate, but his electoral success now hangs by a thread. Radical Islamists claim the Quran forbids Muslim voters to elect a Christian politician; moreover he also stands trial for blasphemy. We accompany opponents and supporters of Governor Basuki in the heated election campaign. One side is calling for a strictly religious country, the other for the preservation of its rights. The decisive second vote will be held on 19 April 2017.
Length 28’ HD
Film by Markus Reichert, Eberhard Rühle
Production Apollofilm, 2017
Original Title Wahlkampf der Religionen – Islamisten in Indonesien auf dem Vormarsch