November 16, 2011
Following controversy over a raid on an Aug. 3 church dinner at which Muslims were present, Christian leaders in Malaysia welcomed a sultan's pronouncement that neither the Christians nor the state officers who disrupted the meeting would be prosecuted, Compass Direct News reports. The sultan of the state of Selangor issued a statement saying the officers of the Selangor Islamic Religious Department (JAIS) did not breach any state laws in the raid on Damansara Utama Methodist Church, and while church leaders welcomed his wish for religious harmony and his decree that no one would be prosecuted, Dr. Ng Kam Weng of the Kairos Research Center argued that the ruling "cannot be taken as license" for Muslim religious authorities to intrude or trespass on church premises. The sultan's ruling asserted that, based on a report and investigations by JAIS, there were attempts made at the church event to "subvert the faith and belief of Muslims," which is illegal in Malaysia, though there was insufficient evidence for legal action to be taken against the Christians. The sultan commanded JAIS to provide counseling to the 12 Muslims present at the dinner in order to restore their faith and belief in Islam.