STOP “International Burn Quran Day”
(Jakarta, 4 September) “International Burn Quran Day must be put
on a halt to avoid frightful effect,” said Damien Dematra, the National
Coordinator of Pluralism Care Movement (PCM) or Gerakan Peduli
in front of journalists in a demonstration attended by thousands of
demonstrators in front of the US Embassy in Medan Merdeka Selatan
Street, Jakarta, this morning (09/04).
the Chairman of
at 10 o’clock, asking us to consolidate giving pressure to the US
government to stop the “International Burn Quran Day” plan.
Muslims, Christians, and inter-faith groups are standing in the same
boat. We heavily disagree with this plan of action as it could lead to
world-wide religious conflicts,” he further said.
Presents in the demonstration from Pluralism Care Movement members are
Shepard Supit, Kevin Wu
(Leader of Budhayana, a Buddhism Union), and Ustadz
Pluralism Care Movement who also gave speech exclaiming to the Muslims
not to revenge to churches.
The path for peace by Pluralism Care Movement (GPP)
has started from 4 August 2010 when together with many religious,
community leaders, and artists declared a Statement against the campaign
and plan of “International Burn Quran Day” by Dove World Outreach Center
in The Communion of Indonesian Churches (PGI). This action followed by a
formal visit to the US Embassy (9 August) to give the statement letter
to the president of the US. The letter was accepted by the Political
Counselor. On 11 August,
launched a novel “You Burn I Burn” written by Damien Dematra held in
Indonesian Bishops’ Council (KWI) with main goal to fight and prevent
the “International Burn Quran Day” through culture and literature
communication. This novel was reviewed by the Head of Ulama Council and
Nahdlatul Ulama, the secretary of KWI, and an Indonesian senior artist.
In the novel was inserted an open letter from Damien to Pastor Terry
or in Damien Dematra youtube).
The endeavor to fight “International Burn Quran Day” continued by
conducting several Campaign of Peace . On 19 August,
sat together with the Ulama Council (MUI) and lobbying for their support
to prevent provocation from the Muslims society and to ask Indonesian
government to take preventive action to avoid any brutal provocation. On
the same day,
went to Buya Ahmad Syafii Maarif who is considered as the notable nation
teacher, and Mr. Jusuf Kalla, a reputable peacemaker and former Vice
President of Indonesia, asking for their supports.
Pluralism Care Movement has made a bridge with the Islamic hard liners
leaders. On Friday night (20 August), from 09.30 pm until 01.15 am,
Damien Dematra as the National Coordinator of
came to a close meeting with
Habieb Rizieq (Chairman
of Front of Islam Defender or Front Pembela Islam) and four of
their high-ranking officials in their headquarters in Petamburan.
Jakarta. On 26 August, Damien Dematra with trans-religions
representations and community leaders gathered with main leaders of
Hizbut Tahrir Indonesia (HTI) in his main office, asking for their
support to condemn the plan of “International Burn Quran Day” and
speaking to Indonesian society, especially, the Muslims to refrain
themselves from making any retaliation as it would lead to endless
On 27 August,
gathered with main leaders of Nahdlatul Ulama, the biggest Muslim
organization in Indonesia, asking them to inform all their members to
govern their self and to precondition their grass root so that they
won’t be shocked, fearing that it could lead to any anarchist situation
due to emotional and unalarmed shock.
On 1 September, as one of the result of a mutual agreement for peace on
20 August between PCM and the Front of Islam Defender, they sat down
with the Catholic and Protestants main leaders in Indonesia to make an
open dialogue. The Catholic and Protestants main leaders welcomed them
and they all decried the “International Burn Quran Day” and stated their
supports for peace especially in a multicultural and multi religion
society in Indonesia. Front Islam Defender also stated for the Islamic
society not to make any revenge as low as what the planner of
“International Burn Quran Day” do, but to respond their action cleverly
and elegantly according to the Shariah Islam; but if the plan continues,
then they announce to all Muslim society to seek, chase, and kill all
the doers involved as their blood is halal, but not the innocent
In this gathering, Damien also said that one of the reasons of meetings
is to change strategy, from offensive to defensive as the optimism of
the cancellation is getting weaker, since the US government’s hands are
tight with their freedom to express and have religion although they
stand in the same platform, condemning the action. Damien also said,
that as concluded in several meetings with major Islamic leaders before,
he asked Indonesian government to jump in and be ready to take
precautionary actions necessary.
Pictures in Damien Dematra’s web (www.damiendematra.com)
can be used for press purpose.
Other press releases and about Pluralism Care Movement can be viewed in: