Islamic Defenders Front, FPI, chairman Habib Riziq cancels plans to attend an event due to fear of being attacked.
Habib Riziq had planned to visit an Islamic boarding school in Demak, central Java, but there were rumours that his way to the school would be blocked by certain people hostile to the Front. Said the Islamic hard man:
The cancellation was done to ensure a calm atmosphere in central Java.
(Pembatalan ini dimaksud untuk menjaga iklim kondusif di wilayah Jateng.)
Habib Riziq later went to the central Java police headquarters to request protection, accompanied by provincial FPI chief Habib Abdurahman Assegaf and dozens of Front Pembela Islam loyalists.
Habib Riziq said that his men had gotten wind of a plan by a "certain organisation" to cause trouble during his visit.
I am not personally threatened but my non-appearance at the boarding school was agreed on with the police chief in order to keep the peace in central Java.
(Memang saya tidak terancam tetapi ketidakhadiran saya ke ponpes tersebut merupakan kesepakatan dengan Kapolda untuk menjaga kondisi Jateng agar tetap kondusif saja.)
It appears that the "certain group" is almost certainly the Garda Bangsa (see FPI, Garda Bangsa, & Gus Dur), or a similar association connected to the Nahdlatul Ulama, because as Habib Riziq explained:
The FPI did not chase out Gus Dur in Purwokerto [Purwakarta]. Even Gus Dur himself said that he wasn't chased out [by us].
(FPI tidak pernah mengusir Gus Dur saat akan memberikan ceramah di Purwokerto. Bahkan Gus Dur sendiri juga sudah mengklarifikasi bahwa beliau memang tidak pernah diusir.)
and he made his plea for self-preservation:
I also implore all sides not to use methods like the PKI (Communist Party), that is, not to ambush clerics, terrorise religious leaders, and threaten boarding schools.
(Saya juga mengimbau semua pihak kedepan tidak ada yang menggunakan tindakan-tindakan dengan cara-cara seperti PKI, yakni menghadang ulama, menteror kiai dan mengancam ponpes.)
Upon hearing these words the assembled FPI men broke out into cries of "Allahu Akbar", as such men are wont to do.
Central Java police chief Dody Sumantyawan said he had sent several units into the field to ascertain if any men were lying in wait for Habib Riziq, but
There aren't any reports of sweeping or anarchic acts but we'll keep on the watch.
(Belum ada laporan adanya sweeping atau tindak anarki lain. Tapi, kami tetap berjaga-jaga.)