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Indonesia & East Timor Digest

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May 26, 2023

The Epoch Times - May 26, 2023

Henry Jom – Timor Leste's independence fighter and first president Xanana Gusmao is set on pushing Australia for a gas pipeline to be built from the Greater Sunrise fields in the Timor Sea to his country's south coast if his party wins the country's parliamentary election.

Reuters - May 26, 2023

Kate Lamb, Jakarta – Rebels in Indonesia's Papua region threatened to shoot a New Zealand pilot they took hostage in February if countries do not comply with their demand to start independence talks within two months, a new video released by the group on Friday showed.

Reuters - May 26, 2023

Dewi Kurniawati, Jakarta – Indonesia's anti-monopoly agency (KPPU) ordered seven cooking oil companies on Friday to pay fines of up to over $2 million each for restricting sales amid scarce supplies last year.

Tabloid Jubi - May 26, 2023

Jayapura, Jubi – According to Grace Linda Yoku, the Head of the Culture Division at the Jayapura City Education and Culture Office, Mount Srobu is an ancient civilization in Papua that dates back to prehistoric times.

Jakarta Globe - May 26, 2023

BeritaSatu, Jakarta – Sarwono Kusumaatmadja, a senior minister during the Soeharto era, died on Friday after undergoing treatment in Penang, Malaysia. He was 79 years old.

Jakarta Post - May 26, 2023

Kornelius Purba, Jakarta – With the victory of his CNRT Party in the May 20 elections, and his ability to form a strong coalition with a smaller party, Timor-Leste's independence hero Xanana Gusmao is moving closer to realizing his ambition to integrate the young nation into the globally influential ASEAN, with the strong backing of its former colonizer Indonesia.

Tempo - May 26, 2023

Amelia Rahima Sari, Jakarta – The National Food Agency (Bapanas) in a public discussion on Thursday revealed the country's heavy reliance on imported garlic, which the agency claimed reached 95 percent of the available domestic garlic supply.

Sydney Morning Herald - May 26, 2023

Chris Barrett and Karuni Rompies, Singapore – Bodhi Mani Risby-Jones, the Australian man arrested in Indonesia's conservative Aceh province over an alleged naked and drunken rampage, has reached a $25,000 settlement with a man he left hospitalised and is set to be released in coming weeks.

The Conversation - May 26, 2023

Geoffrey Swenson – After a spirited election campaign, the people of Timor-Leste voted for a new parliament on May 21. The vote was free, fair and largely uneventful. The results were accepted. This is a remarkable accomplishment for democracy.

Antara News - May 26, 2023

Wuryanti P, Kenzu, Jakarta – The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has designated the archive of the first Indonesian President Sukarno's speech at the UN General Assembly in 1960 as a Memory of the World (MoW).

Tabloid Jubi - May 26, 2023

Jayapura, Jubi – A number of banners and posters containing intimidation against Papuan students were seen on several campuses in Ternate City, the capital of North Maluku Province. The posters and banners were installed in various public places but were removed on Wednesday night.

Tempo - May 26, 2023

Riani Sanusi Putri, Jakarta – The Indonesian Constitutional Court (MK) on Thursday officially moved the jurisdiction to organize court trials on taxes from Finance Ministry to the Supreme Court.

The Diplomat - May 26, 2023

Sacha Shaw – A parliamentary election and the climax of a month of celebrations marking the anniversary of independence came and went last weekend in Asia's youngest nation, Timor-Leste. By Tuesday, May 23, the results were in: Xanana Gusmao's National Congress of the Reconstruction of East Timor (CNRT) won from opposition, taking 31 out of a possible 65 seats in parliament.

Al Jazeera - May 26, 2023

Medan, Indonesia – On the morning of May 21, 1998, Indonesia's then-leader Soeharto stood in the Presidential Palace and addressed the nation.

For weeks, protesters had filled the streets amid soaring prices of fuel, cooking oil and rice as a result of the Asian Financial Crisis.

Vietnam News - May 26, 2023

Jakarta – Indonesia will continue exporting some raw minerals in 2024 in the context that domestic companies are rushing to finish smelters to process the metal ore, said Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources Arifin Tasrif.

Jakarta Globe - May 26, 2023

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – The government will grant land titles that span eight decades for industrial and residential properties in Nusantara, Indonesia's planned new capital city which lies in East Kalimantan.

Jakarta Globe - May 26, 2023

Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – The Public Works Ministry has released a statement claiming that the government of President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo built 1,500 kilometers more of "national roads" than his predecessor Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, or SBY, did in the previous administration.

Jakarta Post Editorial - May 26, 2023

Jakarta – Few would still remember when an article from 2009 that classified tobacco as an addictive substance was removed from the final draft of the health bill that would be signed by the president.

The article was later reinstated, but nobody was held responsible for the criminal act as the police dropped their probe into the case.

May 25, 2023

Jakarta Globe - May 25, 2023

Yustinus Paat, Jakarta – The chairman of President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's biggest group of supporters claimed on Thursday that the president is still making attempts to pair up Ganjar Pranowo with Prabowo Subianto for the 2024 presidential election.

Tempo - May 25, 2023

Moh Khory Alfarizi, Jakarta – The Transportation Ministry's directorate general of land transport in a statement on Thursday has pushed for the use of electric vehicles in public transportation.

The director general, Suharto, believes the EV industry has grown exponentially due to the subsiding pandemic and support from the government through incentives.

Jakarta Post - May 25, 2023

Jakarta – The newly signed defense and maritime cooperation agreement between Papua New Guinea (PNG) and the United States will not only exacerbate the ongoing great power rivalry in the Asia Pacific region but also give us a cause for concern because we share a border with PNG.

CNN Indonesia - May 25, 2023

Jakarta – The National Commission on Violence Against Women (Komnas Perempuan) recorded that the number of cases of violence against women reached 457,895 in 2022.

Komnas Perempuan Chairperson Andy Yentriyani said the number of complaints decreased slightly from the previous year. In 2021, Komnas Perempuan recorded 459,094 cases of violence.

Jakarta Globe - May 25, 2023

Whisnu Bagus Prasetyo, Jakarta – Indonesia is sending 229,000 pilgrims to perform the hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia's holy city of Mecca this year. This makes the largest Hajj quota Indonesia has ever received to date.

Tempo - May 25, 2023

Antara, Jakarta – Indonesia's Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Ministry is pursuing tuna seed cultivation to improve national economic added value and boost fishermen's welfare.

Tempo - May 25, 2023

Ima Dini Shafira and Tika Ayu, Jakarta – Kurnia Ramadhana – researcher for the antigraft watchdog Indonesia Corruption Watch (ICW) – on Thursday called out the General Elections Commission (KPU) chairperson Hasyim Asy'ari over spreading misleading information regarding the regulation overseeing the candidacy of former corruption convicts.

Jakarta Post - May 25, 2023

Aditya Hadi, Jakarta – Indonesia's delegation looks set to curb ambitions at an upcoming global forum on plastic pollution amid concern that some of the plans could harm local industries.

CNN Indonesia - May 25, 2023

Jakarta – The latest Kompas Research and Development (Litbang Kompas) survey predicts that as many as 12 out of the 18 political parties that will take part in the 2024 elections will not gain any seats in the House of Representatives (DPR).

These parties are expected to fail to garner enough votes to meet the 4 percent parliamentary threshold.

Tempo - May 25, 2023

Ima Dini Shafira and M Julnis Firmansyah, Jakarta – Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDIP) head branch Said Abdullah on Wednesday believes the electability of future presidential candidate and current Central Java governor Ganjar Pranowo will surpass Prabowo Subianto.

Jakarta Post - May 25, 2023

Nina A. Loasana, Jakarta – Health activists are unhappy with the proposed tobacco rules in the omnibus bill on health because it fails to provide stricter tobacco control for the country.

Tempo - May 25, 2023

Tika Ayu and Eka Yudha Saputra, Jakarta – The process related to the 2024 General Elections (Pemilu) has officially kicked off as the General Elections Commission (KPU) has received applicants who plan to run as legislatures from numerous political parties, and is now being verified.

May 24, 2023

The Diplomat - May 24, 2023

Gantry Meilana – Timor-Leste's opposition party won Sunday's parliamentary election, meaning independence fighter Xanana Gusmao is likely to return as prime minister in Asia's youngest democracy.

Tempo - May 24, 2023

Moh. Khory Alfarizi, Jakarta – Indonesian Labor Party President Said Iqbal announced that hundreds of thousands of workers are set to hold demonstrations against Law No. 6 of 2023 concerning Job Creation or the omnibus law. The protests will be held alternately in 38 provinces throughout the country.

Jakarta Globe - May 24, 2023

BTV, Jakarta – Public Works and Housing Minister Basuki Hadimuljono has claimed that the construction of primary infrastructures like roads, water supplies, electricity lines, and main government buildings will be completed before Independence Day next year.

Tempo - May 24, 2023

M Julnis Firmansyah, Jakarta – Presidential Chief of Staff Moeldoko on Wednesday urges calm in the wake of news that the Indonesian Armed Forces (TNI) Law will be revised. The former TNI commander claims that the revision will clearly define the professionalism of the country's military force.

Asia Pacific Report - May 24, 2023

An Australian advocacy group has called for West Papua to be reinscribed on the United Nations list of "non self-governing territories", citing the "sham" vote in 1969 and the worsening human rights violations in the Indonesian-ruled Melanesian region.

Tabloid Jubi - May 24, 2023

Jayapura, Jubi – On Tuesday, May 23, 2023, the Jayapura District Court continued the trial of three students accused of treason for taking part in a free speech which displayed the Morning Star flag, held at the Jayapura University of Science and Technology (USTJ) campus on November 10 last year.

Australian West Papua Association (AWPA) Statement - May 24, 2023

The International Week of Solidarity with the Peoples of Non-Self-Governing Territories (NSGT) is commemorated annually from 25-31 May.

The Special Committee on Decolonization (C-24) will hold its 2023 Pacific Regional Seminar, in Bali, Indonesia, from 24 to 26 May.

South China Morning Post - May 24, 2023

Former Indonesian President Megawati Sukarnoputri has slammed the military's plans to set up regional commands, asking if it was preparing for a war.

Tempo - May 24, 2023

M Julnis Firmansyah, Jakarta – Presidential Chief of Staff Moeldoko on Wednesday gave his response to a criticism that compared the national roadway constructions during the double terms of President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo and his predecessor Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono or SBY.

Jakarta Globe - May 24, 2023

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – Poland wants to reduce its trade deficit with Indonesia, and the European country is seeking to promote its agrifood exports, according to its deputy foreign minister Wojciech Gerwel.

Jakarta Globe - May 24, 2023

Muhammad Aulia, Jakarta – Markus Alim, the chief executive officer of leading home appliance producer Maspion, underwent questioning at the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) building in Jakarta on Wednesday as a key witness in the bribery case against former Sidoarjo Regent Saiful Ilah.

Jakarta Globe - May 24, 2023

Bella Evangelista, Jakarta – Prosperous Justice Party (PKS) politician Bukhori Yusuf has resigned from the party and his House of Representatives post amid domestic violence allegations brought by his second wife.

Tempo - May 24, 2023

Antara, Jakarta – The Governments of Indonesia and Malaysia signed two memoranda of understanding (MoU) in the defense industry sector on the sidelines of the 16th International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition (LIMA) 2023 in Langkawi, Malaysia on May 23.

UCA News - May 24, 2023

Church leaders and advocacy groups have opposed Indonesia's plan to set up military posts across all provinces in the Southeast nation, accusing the authorities of efforts to enhance the military's role in civilian life.

Al Jazeera - May 24, 2023

Randy Mulyanto and Charlenne Kayla Roeslie, Jakarta, Indonesia – Indonesia's strongman Soeharto stepped down 25 years ago this week after protests and unrest across the archipelago, some of which targeted the country's ethnic Chinese minority.

Sydney Morning Herald - May 24, 2023

Amilia Rosa and Chris Barrett, Denpasar – For more than two years Bali was starved of overseas tourists as the COVID-19 pandemic wreaked havoc around the world. Now, with the global health crisis seemingly in the rear-view mirror, they are back in droves, with almost 1.5 million arriving on the island between January and April alone.

Channel News Asia - May 24, 2023

Neo Chai Chin and Janice Wu, Bandung, Indonesia – In Asia, a region that could see more heatwaves like the one last month, there is a low-cost, sustainable way to make temperatures more bearable for people in cities.

"Cool" roofs have a special coating applied to reflect sunlight and reduce the amount of heat absorbed by a building. The result is lower indoor temperatures.

May 23, 2023

Jakarta Post - May 23, 2023

Dio Suhenda, Jakarta – Ahead of the regional elections next year, a local branch of the Indonesia Solidarity Party (PSI) in Depok, West Java, joined a recent bandwagon looking to support an idea to nominate President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's son Kaesang Pangarep as mayor of the city.

Jakarta Globe - May 23, 2023

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – Nusantara – Indonesia's new capital project in East Kalimantan – is popular among investors, but it will take time for the investment to actually take shape, according to Bambang Susantono, the head of the city's authority body.

Bambang said Nusantara had amassed more than hundreds of letters of intent from investors both home and abroad.

Jakarta Globe - May 23, 2023

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – Iran promised to help Indonesia modernize its healthcare with surgical robots during a meeting between the leaders of the two countries in Bogor on Tuesday.