The Australian Government should condemn the jailing of former Christian governor of Jakarta, Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, also known as Ahok, for alleged blasphemy against Islam, according to the Australian Christian Lobby.

“We should not be silent while our nearest neighbour incarcerates people under so-called blasphemy laws,” ACL Managing Director Lyle Shelton.

“The Australian-Indonesian relationship should be mature enough to withstand friendly criticism about the most fundamental of human rights.

“Indonesia’s shift towards Islamic extremism seems to be following that of Turkey.

“It seems that Islam as practiced by so-called moderate Islamic states like Indonesia is incompatible with freedom of religion, speech and thought enshrined in the United Nations Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

“The dramatic enforcement of so-called blasphemy laws by our near neighbour, the world’s biggest Muslim majority nation, is a worrying development and it should be resisted.

“The silence of Australia’s human rights lobby at this time is also worrying,” Mr Shelton said.