By The Global Journal | June 14, 2012 - 14:00 GMT
Indonesian citizen, Alex Aan, was today (14 June) jailed for 30 months after being found guilty of spreading his atheist views on Facebook. The trial had inspired a national and international campaign on the status of atheism and freedom of expression in Indonesia.
Delivering the court's judgement, presiding judge Eka Prasetya Budi Dharma explained that Aan was guilty of “deliberately spreading information inciting religious hatred and animosity”. He added that the consequences of Aan’s acts “tarnished Islam” and “caused anxiety to the community”.
Aan started an atheist group through the social network site, which he used to publish articles and cartoons. Soon after, he was targeted and assaulted by angry mobs in his hometown. Aan had also previously been charged with persuading others to embrace atheism and blasphemy, but prosecutors ultimately dropped that case against him.
Indonesia guarantees freedom of religion for those faiths that are officially recognized by the state — Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, Catholicism, Protestantism and Confucianism. (With AFP) (Photo © D.R.)
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