Police beating apparently sparks
Indonesian riot
Extent of damage still unknown
By K.T.Arasu

JAKARTA, Dec 26 (Reuter) An Indonesian mob, apparently incensed by 
a report that police had beaten a religious teacher, went on the 
rampage on Thursday, setting fire to churches, commercial 
buildings and vehicles, police and residents said.

They said the West Java town of Tasikmalaya, about 200 km (125 
miles) southeast of Jakarta, appeared to be under siege with smoke 
billowing from burning buildings.

Residents contacted by telephone said police and troops had sealed 
off the town of about 500,000 people, but there were no immediate 
reports of casualties.

They said a crowd of several thousand people, many of them youths, 
ran amok apparetly after police had beaten a religious school 
teacher and his two students.

"Yes, the rioting is connected to that case," a Tasikmalaya police 
official told Reuters. "The rioters are still going around town 
and we are monitoring the situation."

[snip]

The police official in Tasikmalaya said more than 200 policemen 
had been deployed and reinforcements had been sought from the 
hilltown of Bandung, about 120 km (75 miles) to the northwest.

He said police were trying to determine the extent of the damage 
in Tasik- malaya, a key road and rail transit town from Jakarta to 
central Java, which produces mainly handicraft products.

[snip]

Political and religious analysts say Christion churches become 
targets for mob violence primarily for economic and social 
reasons, with Christians usually the more affluent members of the 
community. 

[Snip]

PS: Several parts were deleted for they're similar to the news 
before. 


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