Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Jakarta Metropolitan Police on Monday dispatched 7,766 personnel to secure simultaneous rallies staged by workers opposing the new law on job creation and Muslims protesting French President Emmanuel Macron’s remarks on Islam.

The security personnel were drawn from the Jakarta Metropolitan Police, the Indonesian Military (TNI), and the Jakarta Public Order Agency, Jakarta Police spokesperson, Sen.Coms. Yusri Yunus, told journalists in Jakarta on Monday.

“We hope the field coordinators of the two peaceful rallies remain able to anticipate any infiltration of provocateurs into the crowds of protesters to instigate any chaotic situation,” he said.

The security personnel were also accompanied by staff from the Jakarta city administration's fire-brigade and transportation office as a precautionary measure against any untoward incidents.

During the rally against the Omnibus Law, several hundred workers gathered at the Horse Statue Roundabout near the National Monument in Central Jakarta as part of their ongoing protest against the enactment of the new law.

At the same time, several hundred Muslims from the Islam Defenders Front (FPI) and 212 Alumni Brotherhood (PA 212) flocked to Thamrin Street in Central Jakarta to protest against Macron’s remarks on Islam and defense of depiction and publication of cartoons on Prophet Muhammad.

The demonstrators who gathered on the street, which is part of Jakarta's central business district area, demanded that Indonesia cut diplomatic ties with France, and French Ambassador to Indonesia and Timor Leste, Olivier Chambard, be expelled from the country.

They dubbed President Macron a “terrorist”, and praised Abdullakh Anzorov and called him a “real hero”, saying his actions were aimed at defending the honor of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).

Anzorov, 18, beheaded Samuel Paty on October 16, 2020 after the history and geography teacher showed cartoons on Prophet Muhammad during a class on October 6, 2020. Anzorov reportedly felt offended by Paty’s action.

He was later shot dead by the French police.

Before flagging off the anti-France rally, Muslim protesters performed zuhr (midday prayer) on Thamrin Street near Sarinah Mall, while the Jakarta city police secured the French embassy.

Macron's remarks following Paty’s beheading have sparked controversy and fueled a backlash from Muslims across the world over the past few days.

The governments of Muslim majority nations, including Indonesia, Turkey, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, and Malaysia, have condemned Macron’s "anti-Islam" remarks and "Islamophobic" behavior. (INE)

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Translator: Fianda SR, Rahmad Nasution
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
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