Monday, April 17, 2006
Muslims target Playboy office
12/04/2006 11:37 - (SA)
Jakarta - Hundreds of Muslim hardliners on Wednesday attacked the offices of the newly-published Indonesian edition of Playboy magazine.
About 300 protesters from the radical Islamic Defenders' Front (FPI) rallied outside the building to demand that the local version of the magazine, which carries no nude photos, cease publication.
They tore up copies of the magazine and threw stones at the building, shattering windows.
One of some 90 policemen guarding the building was injured but most of the magazine's employees had left the offices when the attack happened.
There were no immediate reports of arrests but witnesses said some police chased stone-throwers.
"We will carry out more attacks if Playboy refuses to stop publishing," Salim Ali Hamid, one of the leaders of the group, told Elshinta radio.
The group had earlier on Wednesday protested the publication of the magazine at national police headquarters in South Jakarta.
Playboy Indonesian edition hit the newsstands last Friday for the first time and was quickly snapped out. Copies later changed hands at more than three times the cover price of 39 000 rupiah ($4.3).
It features pictures of underwear-clad women and is no racier than local editions of British men's magazines FHM and Maxim already on sale here.
It also carried an interview with Pramoedya Ananta Toer, Indonesia's most famous author.
But FPI activists, notorious for attacking nightspots during anti-vice raids, believe that Playboy is synonymous with pornography and is not fit for publication in the world's most populous Muslim country.
Islamic leaders said earlier this year when plans for Playboy's debut were announced that the magazine would corrupt a culture already inundated by Western influences.
President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono weighed into the debate in February to question the magazine's benefit to Indonesia.
Most of Indonesia's Muslims, who make up around 85% of the population of 220 million, practise a moderate and tolerant form of the religion.
Posted by Editor at 12:40 AM