Dossier: Indonesia

Indonesian presidential candidate Joko Widodo meets the people. Photo: Getty Images

Indonesian Presidential Elections 2014

Populist versus autocrat

The two candidates in the forthcoming presidential elections in Indonesia could hardly be more different. Prabowo Subianto, former son-in-law of the late dictator Suharto, has adopted a militaristic style, and likes to present himself as a strong leader, while social democrat candidate Joko Widodo is seen as a man of the people and establishment outsider. Christina Schott examines their chancesMore

Hassanal Bolkiah, Sultan of Brunei (photo: Reuters)

The introduction of Sharia in Brunei

The sultan's new laws

The tiny sultanate of Brunei is the first country in South-East Asia to officially impose Islamic Sharia law at national level. Roxana Isabel Duerr considers what this means for Brunei and the development of Islam in the regionMore

The Indonesian writer Andrea Hirata poses with the German translation of his book "The Rainbow Troops" (photo: picture-alliance/dpa)

Andrea Hirata's novel "The Rainbow Troops"

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One novel; two very different versions

Andrea Hirata's novel "The Rainbow Troops" is the first Indonesian novel to become an international bestseller. Interestingly, the version available outside Indonesia is very different to the one familiar to Indonesian readers. Bettina David explores whyMore

Taman Budaya Yogyakarta, one of the locations used for Biennale Jogja XII (photo: Christina Schott)

Biennale Jogja XII Equator #2

Indonesia's arts scene explores the Arab world

Thirty-five artists and artists' groups from Indonesia and a selection of Arab countries are presenting their work as part of the Equator series at this year's Biennale Jogja in Yogyakarta. Christina Schott took a look aroundMore

The Djihard in Kuta/Bali (photo: DW/ D.Ossami)

Indonesia's New Anarchists

Eager to Lose Their Innocence

Insurrectionary anarchists, with international connections, nihilist values and a penchant for arson, are moving to fill the vacuum on the left. By Dominic BergerMore

Pilgrims in Mecca (photo: DW/A. Abubakar)

Islamic Environmentalism

The Call to Eco-Jihad

Gradually – and unnoticed by most Muslims – Muslim intellectuals and scholars have, since the late 1960s, been developing an Islamic environmental theology. Their aim is to examine green principles such as sustainability, environmental protection, animal welfare, and biodiversity in terms of their compatibility with Islam. By Monika ZbidiMore

Muhammadiyyah Muslims in Yogyakarta (photo: © SUDIARNO/AFP/Getty Images

Islam and Democracy

Why 72 Per Cent of Indonesians Want Sharia

A Pew report states that 7 out of every 10 Indonesians want sharia law to be implemented. However, says Jennie S. Bev, author and columnist from Indonesia, there is no cause for alarm, considering the semantic differences in the use of the term sharia among IndonesiansMore

Protests against President Yudhoyono's economic policy in Jakarta, Indonesia (photo: picture-alliance/dpa)

Democracy and Human Rights in Indonesia

A Blocked Constitutional State

The country with the world's biggest Muslim population has now experienced 15 years of democracy. But the political euphoria of the Indonesian "Reformasi" movement has long since given way to disenchantment. Ex-dictator Suharto's old boy network is still very much in place, and radical Islam is on the rise. By Christina SchottMore

Indonesian Shia Muslims are escorted by police officers as they flee their village following sectarian violence in August 2012 (photo: picture-alliance/dpa)

Religious Tension in Indonesia

Tolerance No More

Indonesia has the biggest Muslim population in the world and is often described as a country where people live peacefully side by side, tolerating difference. In reality, however, the targeting of religious minorities has been on the increase for years. By Andy BudimanMore

Mawardi Nurdin, one of the mayoral candidates, casts his vote into a ballot box in local elections in Aceh, Indonesia, 9 April 2012 (photo: EPA/Hotli Simanjuntak)

Indonesia as a Model of Muslim Democracy

Developments, Problems, and Opportunities

In the wake of Islamic resurgence and the growing democratic movements in North Africa and the Middle East, it is relevant to see Indonesia as a model of Muslim democracy. The country has shown a stable democratic government, civil liberties, and tremendous economic growth. By Luthfi AssyaukanieMore

The Community House in Jakarta (photo: DW)

The ''Community House'' in Jakarta

Education Gives Hope to Indonesian Slum Kids

Around one fourth of Jakarta's 18 million residents live in slums - among them, 1.5 million children. A European project is helping them climb out of poverty through education. By Thomas LatschanMore

Men attack and set fire to Shiite homes in Sampang, Indonesia (photo: Getty Images)

Persecution of Shiites in Indonesia

Hate Preachers and Incitement to Violence

Following a massacre of Shiites in Eastern Java, the Indonesian president, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, has called on the government and the police to provide special protection for the Shiite minority. But many Shiite Muslims remain frightened and insecure. By Andy BudimanMore

A destroyed Ahmadi home in Pandeglang, Indonesia (photo: AP)

Violence against Minorities in Indonesia

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Democracy without Tolerance

The violence against minorities in Indonesia has reached new, terrible heights. While Islamist hardliners target Christians and supporters of the Islamic Ahmadiyya, the state turns a blind eye. Andy Budiman has the detailsMore

Police officers shave the heads of punks, Indonesia, 14 December 2011 (photo: EPA/HOTLI SIMANJUNTAK)

Punks and Sharia Law in Indonesia

The Mohawk Crusade

The pictures were striking and went around the world: young Indonesian punks having their heads shaved by police and being forced to bathe in a lake before being "re-educated" in the spirit of Sharia. James Balowski sums up the events of last December and national and international reactions to themMore

Acehnese students sing during the visit of Indonesia president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to their new school in Bireuen, Aceh province, Indonesia (photo: AP)

Integrated Islamic Schools in Indonesia

Secular Subjects within a Religious Framework

A market for Islamic schools has opened up among Indonesia's growing middle class. Their graduates are very likely to become some of Indonesia's future political leaders, social activists, academics and business-people. Karen Bryner reportsMore

Istiqlal mosque in Jakarta, capital of Indonesia (photo:AP)

Radical Islam in Indonesia

Pluralism as Provocation

Indonesia's image as a poster child for pluralism has been tarnished – the actions of Islamic radicals are increasingly controlling the agenda. In the opinion of some observers, the moderate majority must display a greater sense of unity and overcome the authoritarian heritage of the country. By Anett KellerMore

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