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Niek B.
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Islamic court system inaugurated in restive Aceh

JAKARTA (AFP): An Islamic judicial system has been introduced in Indonesia's restive province of Aceh as part of increased autonomy granted to the staunchly Muslim province by Jakarta, a judge said Tuesday.

"The head of the Supreme Court is currently in Aceh to inaugurate the operation of the Sharia Court there," said Andi Syamsu Alam, deputy chairman of the Supreme Court for religious court affairs.

Alam said Supreme Court chairman Bagir Manan inaugurated the system in the provincial capital Banda Aceh on Monday.

Under the new system, 19 district/municipal religious courts and one appeal court based in the Acehnese capital will hear cases in addition to the existing network of secular courts.

"Cases involving non-Muslims are still handled by the (secular) judicial court," Alam told AFP.

The Sharia Court, he said, would not use the penal and civil code but will be based on qanuns, decrees governing formal and material laws on particular issues that are formulated by local government.

Alam said that the Supreme Court remained the highest court of appeal in the Sharia court system.

The government of Indonesia in 2001 accorded broad special autonomy for Aceh as part of efforts to curb dissent and separatism there. ( Emoticon: Shiny

Source: Jakarta Post

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