ASIA/INDONESIA - On Human Rights Day, President Widodo raises the issue of freedom of worship

Thursday, 10 December 2020 religious freedom   freedom   human rights   religious minorities

Jakarta (Agenzia Fides) - There are still many problems related to human rights in Indonesia, one of them is the issue of freedom of religion. All the social forces of the nation have the task of jointly addressing the issue: this is what Indonesian President Joko Widodo said on the occasion of the International Day of Human Rights, which is celebrated today, 10 December.
According to information from Agenzia Fides, Widodo in the commemorative speech of the Day, said: "There are still problems of freedom of worship in various places in the nation. For this reason, I ask central and regional government officials to be active and reactive to address them peacefully and wisely".
Widodo confirmed that the government assumes the same commitment since "the protection and respect of human rights are important pillars for Indonesia to become a more civilized, resilient and advanced nation". For this reason, he remarked, the government promotes efforts to support human rights: for example, it builds infrastructures, promotes educational activities and socio-economic initiatives, especially in remote areas and peripheral islands, without neglecting the weakest people or most vulnerable. "We also pay particular attention to our brothers and sisters with disabilities. We have formed a National Commission for Disabilities and we are oriented towards an approach that protects human rights at all levels", said the President.
"The government - he added - has never stopped tackling the challenges related to respect for human rights with wisdom and dignity. We must work together, dedicating our energies to the progress of the nation", he said, illustrating the special National Action Plan for Human Rights 2020-2025. Adopted by the executive, the Plan aims, among other things, to promote freedom of worship and to combat intolerance and religious extremism.
The President, as he has done several times in the past, underlined the value of freedom of religion and worship for all Indonesian citizens, according to the philosophy of the "Pancasila", the Charter of the five principles that is the basis of the nation.
At the end of his speech for Human Rights Day, Widodo urged all Indonesian citizens to "play an active role in respecting the rights of others, increasing respect, protection and fulfillment of human rights in Indonesia". Indonesia is a country with 270 million inhabitants, 230 million of whom are Muslims. There are 24 million Christians in the country, and among them 7 million are Catholics. ,(ES-PA) (Agenzia Fides 10/12/2020)