Associated Press

Indonesia publishes 2nd edition of Playboy

By ZAKKI HAKIM, Associated Press Writer
Tuesday, June 6th, 2006 10:19 PM (PDT)
JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) - A second edition of Playboy hit the streets of Indonesia on Wednesday as the local publisher moved its offices to Bali island, two months after Islamic hard-liners threw rocks at its Jakarta offices following the magazine's debut.

The magazine has been toned down for publication in the world's most populous Muslim nation, but the first edition nonetheless drew violent protests from hard-liners who said the contents were immoral and violated criminal codes. Frightened advertisers responded by pulling their ads.

The magazine's new Bali offices opened Wednesday.

"The safety and convenience of our employees come first," publisher Erwin Arnada said of the decision to relocate to the Hindu-majority island of Bali, a haven for foreign tourists. "People in Bali are more open to ideas, they are more adaptable."

The Islamic Defenders' Front - which has a history of attacking bars and nightclubs and took part in the April stoning of Playboy's Jakarta office - said it did not know yet what action it would take against the magazine.

"We'll find some way to make them listen," said senior member Tubagus Muhammad Sidik.

Arnada, who is also the magazine's editor-in-chief, said 100,000 copies of the 160-page edition were being printed. Several pages were left blank but carried a message for advertisers: "We dedicate this empty page to our loyal clients who were threatened for putting their ad in this magazine."

The new issue of Playboy, which hawkers discreetly displayed to motorists at crowded intersections in the capital, features an interview with a Christian hard-liner on Indonesia's death row for an attack on a Muslim boarding school and a story about the local wine culture.

Consumers seeking pornographic thrills would likely be disappointed, Arnada said, noting that there were no nude photos and that the articles were "quite heavily about social, political and cultural issues."

The resort island of Bali has been targeted by al-Qaida-linked terrorists twice in the last four years. Twin nightclub blasts in 2002 killed 202 mostly foreign tourists and triple suicide attacks on crowded restaurants last year left 20 dead.

But Arnada said he still believed the climate there was better than in Jakarta, which has also been hit by deadly bombings. "The ambiance here is more inspirational," he said by phone from Bali.
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