In recent years, the Indonesian government has been pushing to develop new tourist zones to attract foreign visitors to islands besides Bali.
Indonesia & East Timor Digest
September 3, 2019
Francisca Christy Rosana, Jakarta – The Health Care and Social Security Agency (BPJS Kesehatan) president director, Fachmi Idris, admitted that a total of 2,348 companies manipulated data of employees' salary so they could pay the premium lower than they should do.
Andita Rahma, Jakarta – A politician from Perindo Party of Sorong Sayang Mandabayan is undergoing police question in Manokwari Resort Police Headquarters, Papua, over the possession of 1,500 flags of Bintang Kejora or morning star, the symbol of the Free Papua Movement.
September 2, 2019
Ni Komang Erviani, Nusa Dua – Following unrest in Papua, the government is faced with an expensive repair bill in the easternmost province. Around Rp 70 billion (US$4.9 million) will be allocated to fix at least seven government office buildings.
Jakarta (DPA) – One university student was killed and several others injured in the latest violence to hit Indonesia's Papua province, where unrest has grown over the alleged racist treatment of native Papuans.
Eva Safitri, Jakarta – Coordinating Minister for Security, Politics and Legal Affairs (Menko Polhukam) Wiranto has spoken out about the alleged involvement of Papuan separatist figure Benny Wenda accusing him of being part of a conspiracy which triggered the recent rights in Papua.
Paulina Quintao – The National Director for Integrated Policy on Gender Approaches and Women's Capacity, at the Secretariat of State for Equality and Inclusion (SEII), Maria Filomena Babo Martins said advocacy services on gender equality and on women's emancipation in Timor-Leste started in 1975, and despite some significant progress since independence 20 years ago, Timor-Leste is
Ben Doherty and agencies – Three West Papuan students have reportedly been shot in their dormitories by militia groups amid growing tensions in the region, as disturbing footage emerged of Indonesian soldiers firing on peaceful demonstrators during clashes last week in which protesters say six died.
Andita Rahma, Jakarta – The Indonesian government has officially announced that it will curb the access of foreign nationals to Papua and West Papua following the recent findings suggesting foreign intervention in the massive demonstrations across the regions in the past several days.
Syailendra Persada, Jakarta – Papua Governor Lukas Enembe demanded the National Police (Polri) or the National Armed Forces (TNI) to adopt persuasive approach in dealing with protesters.
"Security enforcers, be it TNI or Polri, should avert violence as much as possible and not arrest Papuans holding a protest," said Lukas through a written statement, Sunday, September 1.
Dewi Nurita, Jakarta – Benny Wenda, chairman of the United Liberation Movement for West Papua, said he issued a circular containing instructions that Papuans should not take part in the August 17 Independence Day ceremony.
Andita Rahma, Jakarta – National Police are currently investigating reports of foreigners support for the Free Papua Movement (OPM). Police Chief Gen. Tito Karnavian has earlier exposed the involvement of foreign people in the string of riots in Papua and West Papua.
Jakarta – The Indonesian currency gained slightly against the US dollar on Monday despite a decline in share prices in regional markets amid fears of an escalation in the trade war between the United States and China.
Antara & Telly Nathalia, Jakarta – Police said they have been investigating possible foreign involvement in violent pro-independence protests in Papua and West Papua since Aug. 19.
Jakarta – The parties taking advantage of the riots in Papua and West Papua are starting to be revealed. The Indonesian police (Polri) suspect that these groups have links with international networks.
Endy M. Bayuni, Jakarta – The government is going the wrong way in managing the information flow from Papua, which has seen massive protests in several towns these last two weeks. In times of conflict, suppressing information can be counterproductive and even undermine its credibility.
Jakarta – Police have named 51 people, mostly protesters, as suspects after a series of protests and riots in Papua, West Papua and Jakarta in the last two weeks.
National Police spokesperson Brig. Gen. Dedi Prasetyo confirmed that 30 people had been named suspects in last Thursday's riot in Jayapura, Papua.
Jakarta – Indonesian police have banned violent demonstrations and speeches promoting separatism in the easternmost region of Papua, which had been rocked by protests for two weeks, its security chief and the state news agency said on Monday.
Ika Karlina Idris, Jakarta – The Indonesian government has blocked internet access as they deployed security forces to its easternmost provinces following days of violent protests there. Papuans took to the streets following arrests and racist treatments of Papuan students over the weekend in East Java.
Paulina Quintao – The Executive Secretary of the Agricultural Census, Claudio Ninas Nabais said the main objective of the agriculture census 2019 is to provide information and accurate data to the government, so it can develop policies that respond to the need of farmers and that increase the country's agriculture production.
Guardian staff and agencies – Four Australians who allegedly took part in a pro-independence demonstration in West Papua are being deported, Indonesian immigration authorities have said.
The four Australians will be deported via Bali after they were detained during a protest in Sorong, West Papua's largest city, on Tuesday.
Budiarti Utami Putri, Jakarta – Former minister of research and technology, Muhammad A.S. Hikam, said the fourth Indonesian President Abdurrahman Wahid alias Gus Dur has his own opinion regarding Bintang Kejora or Morning Star flag in Papua.
Dewi Nurita, Jakarta – The leader of the United Liberation Movement for West Papua, Benny Wenda, slammed the approaches taken by the country's elites to Papua, including President Joko Widodo or Jokowi.
Benny said the President did not solve the major problem in the province despite his frequent visits and the people's sympathy.
Friski Riana, Jakarta – Presidential Chief of Staff Moeldoko identified Benny Wenda as a person he recalled had committed foreign intervention that eventually caused the unrest in Papua and West Papua.
"Isn't it clear, that Benny Wenda [is behind it]," said Moeldoko in Jakarta today.
Karina M. Tehusijarana, Jakarta – Immigration officials are deporting four Australian citizens on Monday for allegedly participating in pro-independence protests in Sorong, West Papua.
Immigration Directorate General spokesperson Ujo Sujoto alleged in a statement on Monday that the four Australians took part in a rally in front of the Sorong mayor's office on Aug. 27.
The 2019 criminal code draft bill, published on Aug. 28, will be put to a vote in the House on Sept. 24.
Jakarta – The Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry has announced that Indonesia will stop nickel exports as of Jan. 1 next year to accelerate the establishment of domestic smelters while its nickel reserves are limited.
Sophie Raynor – There are 100,000 people tonight in Tasi Tolu, a wide, flat, dusty expanse on Dili's outskirts, near the capital's western bus terminal, with enough space to fit all those coming to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Timor-Leste's vote for independence.
Zae Baneza, Ulfia Dwi and Adi Ahdiat, Jakarta – On Sunday September 1 the police arrested a number of Papuan students in Jakarta on charges of treason (makar).
Not long after this, the Jakarta Legal Aid Foundation (LBH) issued a press release stating that the police were conducting sweeps.
Paulina Quintao – The Executive Director of the Young Women's Movement Organization (MOFFE), Yasinta Lujina urged the National Parliament to get back on the agenda the draft law on child protection, which has not been discussed nor approved during the previous legislatures, so that children are protected in Timor-Leste.
Johnny Blades – Indonesian civilian militia groups are stoking tensions in West Papuan towns and cities after widespread protests across the region in the past two weeks.
The protests were sparked by racist harassment of West Papuan students in Javanese cities but have developed into the largest Papuan independence demonstrations for decades.
Andita Rahma, Jakarta – The Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs, Wiranto, has seconded the statement of Presidential Chief of Staff Moeldoko, who alleged that Papuan separatist leader Benny Wenda was the mastermind behind the riots in Papua and West Papua.
M Yusuf, Ade Ridwan and Halida Bunga, Jakarta – Jakarta Metro Police spokesman Sr. Comr. Argo Yuwono refuted sayings that police officers committed violence while arresting several Papuan students in their dormitory in Pondok Cina, Depok.
Friski Riana, Jakarta – Presidential Chief of Staff Moeldoko said that the United States of America supported the sovereignty of Indonesia over Papua. He said the encouragement was voiced by Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs.
Rangga Prakoso, Jakarta – The government has issued a new rule that would ban exports of nickel ore from next year, as part of a latest attempt to boost processing capacity in the local industry.
The Vanuatu Civil Society, led by the Vanuatu Association of Non-Government Organization (VANGO) has called on the Government to urgently meet with the Melanesian Spearhead Group leaders to ensure that the mission proposed at the recent Pacific Islands Forum proceeds and a report is provided immediately.
Antara & Nur Yasmin, Jakarta – An association of Indonesian journalists has asked the government to reconsider a Criminal Code bill which if passed could be used to persecute anyone deemed to have insulted or defamed the president, vice president or judges in a court case.
The Indonesian Journalist Alliance (AJI) has called out the bill for threatening press freedom.
James Massola, Dili – Millions of dollars of Chinese heavy machinery and at least 20 Chinese workers are sitting idle on East Timor's south coast, waiting to resume work on multimillion-dollar infrastructure projects.
September 1, 2019
Jakarta (Antara) – Fire has ravaged 150 hectares of land in East Kolaka District in Southeast Sulawesi, said Agus Wibowo, National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) Spokesman.
"The 150 hectares of land are located in three villages in two subdistricts in East Kolaka," Wibowo said in a statement on Sunday.
Jakarta – Indonesian People's Front for West Papua (FRI-WP) spokesperson Surya Anta was arrested by police in Jakarta overnight.
After being taken to the Metro Jaya regional police headquarters (Mapolda), Anta was then transferred to the Mobile Brigade headquarters (Mako Brimob) in Kelapa Dua, Depok, and is undergoing further questioning.
Tasha Wibawa – Walking through rural Indonesia, it's not uncommon to see primary school children smoking cigarettes.
It's just one part of an epidemic in a country where nearly 70 per cent of all men and one in five children aged between 13 and 15 smoke, according to official data.
Hannah Sinclair, Timor-Leste – Superintendent Natercia E.S. Martins is a rare type of authority figure in the Southeast Asian nation of Timor-Leste.
Not only is she female, she's also determined to encourage other women to take up space in what she calls typically "masculine spheres".
Jakarta – The Indonesian Legal Aid Foundation (YLBHI) head of organisational development, Febriyonesta, has criticised police for declaring eight people as suspects for flying the Morning Star flag during a protest action in front of the State Palace on August 28.
Jakarta (Antara) – The Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Ministry has encouraged fish farmers to produce feed to cut down production cost and increase their profits.
Confronting new video has emerged from Deiyai, West Papua showing Indonesian forces opening fire on Papuan protesters who appear to have their hands over their head.
The deadly shooting happened in Deiyai last week but details are only now emerging following an internet shutdown.
Jakarta – The Indonesian government has sent 2,500 police officers and soldiers to Papua province as unrest in the region sparked by alleged racist treatment of Papuans show no signs of abating, a police spokesman said yesterday.
Jakarta, Indonesia – Indonesian police have arrested dozens of people in the easternmost region of Papua following protests last week in which buildings were set ablaze, a police spokesman said Sunday.
Jakarta – The legal team representing Indonesian People's Front for West Papua (FRI-WP) spokesperson Surya Anta has confirmed that their client was arrested by police at a shopping centre in Jakarta on the evening of Saturday August 31. Anta was arrested on charges of treason (makar).
Jakarta (Antara) – Some 252 personnel of the Riau Islands Police's mobile brigade (Brimob) unit were deployed to Papua and West Papua, Saturday, to join their colleagues earlier dispatched there to help restore law and order.
Jakarta (Antara) – The government will reopen the access to the Internet in Papua and West Papua after peace and conducive situation prevail in the easternmost provinces, Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Wiranto said.