News by emailDonate


Top Stories

Most Read

Popular Videos

World News

Indonesian Christians hope newly-elected president will put an end to discrimination

by Eno Adeogun

The Election Commission said Mr Widodo, the first Indonesian president from outside the Jakarta elite, had won 55.5 per cent of the vote, securing him, a second term.

He was able to garner the support of Christians in areas like Papua, North Sulawesi and Nusa Tenggara Timur, while his opponent, Prabowo Subianto, found support in conservative Muslim areas such as Aceh and West Sumatra.


A local Christian explained to anti-persecution charity Open Doors why Mr Widodo got support from Indonesian Christians: "He has been developing the infrastructure in Eastern Indonesia, where most Christian-majority regions are located.

"Many of these places were ignored and under-developed during previous regimes."

However, Mr Widodo has been criticised for not protecting the rights of the minorities, for keeping silent about church closures and the criminalisation of religious cases.

Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, know as Ahok (below), the former Christian governor of Jakarta, was accused of blasphemy and sentenced to two years in jail in May 2017.


The majority of the 266 million people who live in Indonesia are Muslims. Just 32.4 million are Christians.

Although Indonesia's constitution protects religious freedom, Islamic extremist groups are becoming more influential in pushing for an Islamic nation.

Indonesia is number 30 on the World Watch List, which is Open Doors' ranking of the 50 countries where Christians experience the most extreme persecution.

AP Photo/Dita Alangkara

Meanwhile, Indonesia's President Joko Widodo has said authorities have the situation in Jakarta under control after six people died in riots by supporters of his rival in last month's presidential election.

The clashes began on Tuesday night when supporters of former general Prabowo Subianto tried to force their way into the offices of the election supervisory agency and have continued since then.

More than two dozen vehicles were burned as rioters took over neighbourhoods in central Jakarta, throwing rocks and Molotov cocktails at police who responded with tear gas, water cannon and rubber bullets.

Stay up to date with the latest news stories from a Christian perspective. Sign up to our daily newsletter and receive more stories like this straight to your inbox every morning.

Continue the conversation on our Facebook page

A Monthly Gift Of £5 Makes A World Of Difference

In a world of fake news there’s never been a greater need for quality Christian journalism. Premier’s mission is to provide the Church with the most up to date and relevant news, told from a Christian perspective. But we can’t do it without you.

Unlike many websites we haven't put up a paywall — we want to keep our journalism free at the point of need and as open as we can. Premier’s news output takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. No one in the UK is sharing news like we are across radio, magazines and online so please help us to continue that today.

For a monthly gift of £5 or more we’d also be able to send you a free copy of the brand new Premier Bible, a wonderful Anglicised version of the NLT packed with exclusive bonus content, reading plan and resources to help you get the most out of scripture.

Your monthly support will make a world of difference. Thank you.

Set up a monthly gift

Related Articles

Sign up to our newsletter to stay informed with news from a Christian perspective.