The conviction of the former Jakarta governor for blasphemy after massive pressure from militant Muslim groups has reinforced the view that extremism are made possible by the weakness of the state and its failure to exercise power independently, which, it is argued, has allowed extra-state actors to seize political momentum while their vigilantism and violence against minorities go unpunished. This presentation starts from a different angle: using recent cases of violence against minorities in Yogyakarta, it will show how religious militancy thrives in Indonesia not just because of the weak nature of the state, but because these militants are able to maintain shared interests with political actors within the state.
Mohammad Iqbal Ahnaf earned his PhD from Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand, in 2011. He is a faculty member at the Center for Religious and Cross-cultural Studies (CRCS), Universitas Gadjah Mada. He regularly teaches courses on religion, violence and peacebuilding. He has been writing on Hizbut Tahrir and other political Islamic movements and on religious extremism.
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