chapter  7
30 Pages

Killing in the name of God

The intensity of the violence in Tobelo and Galela dramatically altered the North Maluku conflict. Several days after the parties to the Putih-Kuning clashes in Ternate had halted hostilities and demobilized, thousands of Muslim IDPs from north Halmahera arrived in the city. The arrival of these people, and the stories they brought with them of atrocities against Muslims, united Muslims in anger at Christians. Politics and ethnicity were forgotten as religious animosity come to the fore. Muslims from both political factions in Ternate and elsewhere in North Maluku formed a militia to retaliate against Christians in north Halmahera – the Pasukan Jihad (Jihad Force).