Religions Vie for Roles in Tsunami Relief Effort

January 13, 2005


Wire Service: AP

On January 13, 2005 the Associated Press reported, "Muslim radicals are handing out Qurans with the bags of rice and sugar they distribute to tsunami victims. Christian aid groups have also rushed in, quietly promising salvation in this predominantly Islamic region but fearful their presence could spark sectarian violence. Across the Indian Ocean basin, dozens of faith-based groups have joined relief efforts in the wake of last month's tsunami, which killed more than 155,000 in 11 countries and left millions homeless. The groups include everyone from al-Qaida-linked militants to evangelical Christians, and their presence is most profound in Indonesia, where the needs are greatest and the cash-strapped government has thrown open the doors to foreign aid groups."