Posted by: mel | February 7, 2009

Indonesia President joins public in Chinese festival celebration

JAKARTA, Feb. 6 (Xinhua) — Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono joined a public gathering to celebrate the Chinese lantern festival in the Jakarta Expo Center here on Friday.

Yudhoyono said at the event that the public should stand united despite pluralistic differences that might disrupt the country’s harmony.

“Pluralism should instead become a basis to develop culture and creative economy,” he said.

Murdaya Poo, the celebration’s organizing committee chairperson, said that Indonesian Chinese now had equal rights in livelihood and statehood. “We are now treated the same before law and have an equal opportunity to express our culture,” he said.

The event, organized by the Indonesia-Tionghoa Joint Forum, attracted about 10,000 Indonesian Chinese residents to watch the dancing, singing and dramatic performances. Except of the president and the first lady, the Indonesian Minister of Tourism and Culture Jero Wacik and other cabinet members as well as some ambassadors to the country also attended the celebration.

Editor: Mu Xuequan

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