Religious Leaders Condemn Indonesian Bombings

Christian and Muslim leaders condemned two bomb blasts in Jakarta on July 17 as "uncivilized acts" and urged the police to immediately apprehend the culprits. Father Yohanes Dwi Harsanto, executive secretary of the Indonesian bishops' Commission for Youth, said he was deeply distressed over the tragedy that killed at least nine people and injured more than 60 others. "We pray for the dead and those who are injured. Let us also pray for our nation. May God move the heart of this nation to uphold and maintain peace," he said. Father Harsanto expressed hope that all religious leaders would call on their respective followers to maintain national unity.

Amidhan, head of the Indonesian Ulema Council, Indonesia's top Muslim clerical body, said "I am deeply concerned and strongly condemn the uncivilized act,” adding that the council "does not tolerate such violence against innocent people." The Rev. Richard Daulay, general secretary of the Communion of Churches in Indonesia, a Protestant association, also condemned the attacks and said Protestants were praying for the victims.

Shortly before 8 a.m. July 17, bombs exploded at the J.W. Marriott Hotel's restaurant and on the second floor of the Ritz-Carlton Hotel. The Marriott hotel in Jakarta has been bombed before, with 12 people killed in a 2003 car-bomb attack. Indonesia, the world's most populous Muslim nation, has a history of terrorist attacks, including the 2002 Bali bombings that killed 202 people, most of them foreigners. No group has claimed responsibility for the attacks, but suspicion immediately fell on the al-Qaida-linked Southeast Asian terror network Jemaah Islamiyah, which was responsible for the Bali bombings.

Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said the attack was carried out by a "terrorist group" and vowed to arrest the perpetrators. "Those who carried out this attack and those who planned it will be arrested and tried according to the law," he told a news conference.

Don't miss the best from America

Sign up for our Newsletter to get the Jesuit perspective on news, faith and culture.

The latest from america

An explosive device was detonated outside the offices of the Mexican bishops' conference, directly across the street from the country's most visited religious site, the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. walks from the Senate Chamber on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, July 25, 2017, as he steers the Senate toward a crucial vote on the Republican health care bill. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Republican proposals “exclude too many people, including immigrants,” Bishop Frank J. Dewane said in a statement.
Without quite knowing it, I had begun to rely on the tradition of the Roman Catholic Church.
Elizabeth BruenigJuly 25, 2017
A demonstration for affordable health care in New York City on July 13. Bishop Frank J. Dewane of Venice, Fla., chairman of the U.S. bishops' Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, called on the Senate July 21 to fix problems with the Affordable Care Act in a more narrow way, rather than repeal it without an adequate replacement. (CNS photo/Andrew Gombert, EPA)
The sisters say that they are “most troubled by the cuts it would make to Medicaid by ending the Medicaid expansion and instituting a per capita cap [on spending].”