“UN scraps contract with group chaired by Bali bomb cleric,” from AFP, with thanks to Sr. Soph:
JAKARTA -The UN has cancelled a contract with an Indonesian organisation to deliver earthquake aid because it is chaired by the firebrand cleric jailed over bombings in Bali, a spokesman said on Thursday.
World Food Programme spokesman Barry Came said that the agency had not realised that the Indonesian Mujahedin Council (MMI), an umbrella organisation that fights for sharia law, was chaired by the radical Abu Bakar Bashir.
The cleric, who is also the alleged head of regional extremist group Jemaah Islamiyah (JI), was freed from prison Wednesday after serving more than two years for his role in the 2002 Bali bombings which killed 202 people.
“They were a partner until last night. The contract was cancelled,” the spokesman told AFP. Asked why, he responded: “Because when we signed the contract with them, it wasn’t realised, the connection to Abu Bakar Bashir.”
Came said that as part of their two-month contract, the WFP had given 95 tons of food to the MMI, which had distributed the aid to victims of an earthquake that hit central Java last month and killed 5,800 people…
MMI spokesman Fauzan al-Anshori said he had not been informed about the WFP”s decision but described it as “racist.”
“Is teacher Bashir a monster? He has nothing to do with terrorism. If the cancellation is based on MMI”s ties with Bashir and our religious beliefs, then it’s a very discriminatory and racist act,” he told AFP.
“Racist.” Fauzan knows how to push the right buttons.