Jakarta. Various conflicts in the Middle East, such as in Iraq and Syria, has forced the people in the country to fly away and seek refuge to European countries. Unfortunately, many of them died in their way.
“This is a humanity problem everyone is responsible for,” said Vice President Jusuf Kalla when opening the International Consultation on Multi-Religious Humanitarian Action organized by Religions for Peace (RfP) with the theme “Addressing Violent Religious Extremism, Refugees and Migrant Crisis and Disaster Relief”, held at the Vice President’s Office today.
The conflicts in the Midle East, he added, were actually triggered by a group of “young angry men” searching for justice. The Vice President then took conflicts in Poso and Ambon as for comparison.
“People were fighting one another due to injustice, both in economy and politics,” he said, adding that conflict flared in Aceh in the past was also due to the same reasons.
In the meantime, he continued, radicalism as brought by Alqaeda and ISIS grew rapidly in “the failed states” in the Middle East where democracy is forced to be applied to replace their leaders deemed authoritarian.
“Radical and extremist ideologies then comes at such situation and people who were dissatisfied with the condition will incline to accept the new alternative ideas,” he argued.
Mr Kalla also reminded that radicalism cannot be beaten using military forces only. “Violent ideologies should be fought by spreading moderate thinking and tolerance,” he said.
More importantly, he continued, radicalism must be tackled to its root by preventing countries from invading other countries with whatever reason.
Previously, Co-President of Religions for Peace (RfP) Din Syamsuddin said the consultation forum will discuss three central topics, including religious extremism, migrant and refugee crisis, and disaster relief.
RfP secretary general Willian F. Vendley in addition said to create peace, there should be a clear separation between the state and religion, either in their identity, mandates, or capacity.
Bishop Gunnar Stallset of Norway, who is also RfP Honorary President, said that Indonesia is an inspiration to activists in humanity and democracy movements.
“With its largest number of Muslims in the world, Indonesia has shown its moderation and tolerance,” he said.
Religions for Peace (RfP) is the largest international organization consisting of various religious figures dedicated on the issue of peace making. Established in 1970, the organization headquarterd in New York now has representatives in 90 countries throughout the world.