GKI Yasmin issue to be rediscussed early next year : minister

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Home Affairs Minister Gamawan Fauzi said the GKI Yasmin church issue in Bogor, West Java, which has been dragging on over the past few years will be rediscussed early next year using the legal approach.

"We will rediscuss the dispute early in 2012 from the legal point of view," the minister said here Thursday after attending a function to present "Innovative Government Award" citations to a number of district and municipal administrations.

He said his office was ready at any time to facilitate dialogs between the Bogor city government and the GKI Yasmin side to resolve their dispute.

At meetings scheduled for early next year, the dispute would be discussed using the legal approach which meant reviewing it based on relevant regulations or existing court decisions.

"I hope all the parties involved will create a climate where calm will prevail so that a better way out from the problem can be found," he said.

The dispute evolves around the GKI Yasmin`s demand to be allowed to set up a house of prayer on a plot of land it owns in Bogor city.

The Bogor city administration had refused to issue the needed permit and the GKI Yasmin then sued the city government in a state administrative court which eventually issued a verdict in its favor.

The Bogor city mayor subsequently appealed the state administrative court`s ruling up to Supreme Court level. But although the Supreme Court later upheld the state administrative court`s decision, the Bogor mayor continued to deny the GKI Yasmin a building permit on the ground there was proof that the signatures showing people living around the designated church site had no objections to the project were fake.

The Bogor city administration then offered the GKI Yasmin congregation another plot of land where it could set up their church but the latter rejected the offer.

Earlier, the home affairs minister had called on the Bogor mayor to abide by the law, maintain Bogor city`s stability, always act in coordination with other regional authorities and initiate dialogs with the GKI Yasmin side.  (*)