Indonesia’s Jakarta governor grilled by police over alleged blasphemy case

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JAKARTA,   (Xinhua) — The governor of Indonesian capital city of Jakarta was questioned on Monday over an alleged religious blasphemy case which led to a violent demonstration on Friday.

Basuki Tjahaja Purnama was summoned by the police as a witness in the case. He did not answer any question by the media as he arrived in the police headquarters’ crime investigation unit office.

“There are several points that we need to investigate, including the context of his comment, to avoid misinterpretation,” Ari Dono Sukmanto, chief of the police’s crime investigation unit, said.

Police had summoned 12 experts and 13 witnesses related to the case. The investigation into the case would be conducted in a swift and transparent manner and was expected to be settled within the next two weeks, police said.

Basuki was accused of making a comment that allegedly insults the Koran during his meeting with people in the capital’s northern district of Thousand Island in September.

The controversial comment led to massive demonstrations staged by Muslim hardliner groups in the past two months.

A demonstration held in the capital’s northern district of Penjaringan turned violent on Friday after mobs encircled Basuki’s residence, ransacked stores and attempted to incite a riot.

Several people, including police personnel, were injured after police fired tear gas and clashed with the demonstrators.

Indonesian President Joko Widodo deplored the violence after the demonstration.

Basuki, the incumbent governor, will run for Jakarta’s gubernatorial election in February next year. He had apologized for his comment.

Editor: Hou Qiang