Sat, 09 Dec 2000

Locals attack armed FPI members

JAKARTA (JP): Dozens of local residents at the Pertamina housing complex in Tugu Selatan area, North Jakarta, engaged in a brawl with some 50 members of the Islamic Defenders Front (FPI) on Thursday night after the latter, armed with daggers and swords, marched into the complex, a police report said.

Two FPI members were injured during the clash.

The report said the FPI members had marched around the complex at about 10:30 p.m. with unclear intentions and had been showing a hostile attitude while shouting.

The group's actions drew antipathy from local residents who felt disturbed by the group which has continuously launched violent attacks on several entertainment centers in the capital.

"A clash then occurred after the locals threw rocks at FPI members," the report said, adding that the locals had armed themselves with wooden sticks to attack the FPI members.

None of the FPI's executives were available for comment on the attack on Friday, while an FPI member who was contacted by The Jakarta Post refused to give any statement about the incident.

Earlier on Thursday, National Police spokesman Brig. Gen. Saleh Saaf said the police would no longer tolerate FPI's unlawful actions such as raiding entertainment centers, damaging the premises and harming their patrons. (jaw)