Acehnese people

Acehnese people

The Acehnese (also Achinese) a people in Aceh in Indonesia. Their language which is also called Acehnese, belongs to the Western Malayo-Polynesian branch of the Austronesian language family.

Their homeland is located in the northern-most tip of the island of Sumatra and had a history of political struggle against the Dutch.

They were at one time Hinduized, as is evident from their traditions and the many Sanskrit words in their language. They have been Muslims for several centuries and are generally the most conservative Muslim ethnic group in Indonesia.

They are industrious and skillful agriculturists, metal-workers and weavers. Traditionally matrilocal, their social organization is communal. They live in "gampôngs", which combine to form districts known as "mukims".

Aceh has been trying to regain its political freedom ever since it gave up its independence to join Indonesia. Indonesia, under the late President Sukarno, had critically at various periods undermined the rights of the Acehnese people including the dissolution of Aceh into the province of North Sumatra in the 1950s and the failure to keep the promise it made to Aceh with regards to its religious freedom. Brutal repressions of their political struggle by Jakarta have further hardened the Acehnese resolve for a political divorce.

Aceh came to international attention as being one of the hardest hit regions of the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake with 120 thousand lost.

Notable Acehnese people

* Bustanil Arifin, Indonesian government minister
* Cut Nyak Dien, Indonesian hero
* Daud Bereueh, leader of Darul Islam
* Hamzah Fansuri, sufi poet
* P. Ramlee, well-known Malaysian singer, actor and director of the 1960s to early 1970s.
* Sofyan Djalil, Indonesian government minister
* Teuku Umar, Indonesian hero
* Badang, siamese strongman in the 1300s

ee also

* Insurgency in Aceh
* Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam
* Sultanate of Aceh

External links

* [ on Aceh language]



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