For 10 days in Poso, I stayed with a friend near the Lombogia Urban Village Office. A partially destroyed house with cracked walls, covered with grass and shrubs, stood nearby. There was no roof left. The building had been a witness to communal violence in Poso, a period that has left this coastal city with a reputation for religion conflict.

In December 1998, Lombogia was the site of the flashpoint where a fight between Muslim and Christian men over politics ended brutally, sparking struggles for vengeance. That first phase of violence was described in a Human Rights Watch report as “short and limited to several neighbourhoods in Poso town”, but the violence continued, in separate phases, through to December 2001.

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Eko Rusdianto

Eko started his career as an announcer at Sindikasi Berita Pantau (Yayasan Pantau Jakarta) in 2008. Now a freelance writer, he has written for a range of publications including Mongabay and Vice Indonesia. He’s based in Bantimurung in South Sulawesi.