A former Muslim cleric who is now a Christian was sentenced to 10 years in an Indonesian prison for “blasphemy.”
Muhammad Kace was accused of making disparaging remarks about Muhammad, Islam’s prophet, reported the relief group Barnabas Fund. A court in West Java Province deemed Kace guilty of “blasphemy” and hate speech.
Appealing his case
Kace’s attorney said an appeal is planned.
Kace was arrested and imprisoned in August 2021 for YouTube videos in which he evaluated and analyzed Islam and its teachings. On Aug. 26, 2021, prison inmates brutally beat Kace. During Kace’s recent trial, tight security was necessary because Muslims were protesting him outside the court building.
The exercise of hardline Islamic ideology has increased significantly in Indonesia, Barnabas Fund stated. During the 2021 Christmas season, nearly 180,000 police were dispatched to guard churches and other locations from possible terrorist attacks. To quell the rise in Islamism, Indonesian President Joko Widodo has taken certain steps, such as disbanding two hardline organizations.
Indonesia is No. 28 on Open Doors’ 2022 World Watch List of places most difficult to be a Christian.