Indonesian President Joko Widodo said on Tuesday (22 November) that his government was determined to "prevent the growth of radicalism" in the world's largest Muslim population country. His comments come after rumours, which have been doing rounds, that hard-line Islamists are planning protests in the following weeks to bring down the government.

Widodo is said to have been holding meetings with his coalition partners, top political and religious leaders and military officials in the recent days to signal the unity of his government and to seek peace in the country.

"I want to emphasise the spirit of pluralism ... and the government is determined to prevent the growth of radicalism in this country," Reuters quoted the president has saying after one such recent meetings on Tuesday.

Widodo is also reported to have been meeting with the military and security forces, urging them to be on high alert following after more than 100,000 Muslims took to the streets on 4 November to demand the resignation of capital Jakarta's Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, the first ethnic Chinese and Catholic Christian in the position. He is accused of blasphemy after he allegedly insulted the Islamic holy book Koran.

It was also rumoured that certain extremists groups are planning to storm the parliament during demonstrations that are expected on 25 November and 2 December.

"There are hidden methods by certain groups to enter and occupy parliament... If [these actions] are intended to overthrow the government, that's a violation of the law," National Police Chief Tito Karnavian warned on Monday (21 November).

Widodo is the first Indonesian president to have come from a non-political or military clan, and experts believe that his opponents are using the Islamic commotion over Purnama to undermine him.

Indonesian officials are also said to be investigating a social media campaign calling for a possible run on banks on 25 November in protest over Widodo government's handling of the complaint against the Jakarta governor.

According to Reuters, the police have opened a probe into allegations against Purnama on Tuesday, 22 November.

Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo
Political analysts have said opponents of Indonesia President Joko Widodo are using the Islamic furore over the Jakarta governor to undermine his governmentMartin H. Simon-Pool/GettyImages