Tuesday, 30th May 2017

Wisdom key to settling Shiite problem: Minister Saifuddin

19th March 2017 | 2.184 Views
Wisdom key to settling Shiite problem: Minister Saifuddin
Minister Lukman Hakim Saifuddin. (ANTARA/Asep Fathulrahman)
Surabaya (ANTARA News) - The Indonesian Religious Affairs Minister Lukman Hakim Saifuddin believes that wisdom is necessary to settle the problem of hundreds of Shiites of Sampang, Madura, who are still living in refugee camps in Sidoarjo, East Java.

"What is needed now is wisdom to respond to the religious beliefs developing in Indonesia," Saifuddin stated after a graduation ceremony at the Sunan Ampel University in Surabaya on Saturday (March 18).

The minister said diverse religious beliefs have existed in Indonesia since long. Hence, he urged religious adherents to not engage in the blame game and consider their own beliefs as right.

"Hence, all sides need to show wisdom to settle the problem of Shiites in Sampang, Madura (East Java)," he emphasized.

Saifuddin revealed that his ministry had continued to make efforts to send back Shiite residents to their hometowns in Sampang. The efforts were made through coordination with the central, district, and provincial governments, among others.

"The central governments are currently coordinating with the district and provincial governments. The success of the efforts also significantly depends on their initiatives to settle their own problems," Saifuddin remarked.

The minister also called on the people to respect the faith of others. Above all, Indonesia is known for its religious tolerance.

The Shiite refugees have been living in these camps since 2012 after a conflict erupted between them and the Sunni residents. The refugees yet do not know when they can return to their hometowns in Sampang, East Java
(Uu.A014/INE/KR-BSR/H-YH)