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Indonesia & East Timor Digest

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November 3, 2020

Reuters - November 3, 2020

Jakarta – Indonesia's assumed entry into its first economic recession since the 1998 Asian financial crisis will probably be confirmed by third quarter gross domestic product data (GDP) being released later this week, a Reuters poll showed on Tuesday.

Jakarta Post - November 3, 2020

Budi Sutrisno, Jakarta – President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has signed the Job Creation Law, allowing it to enter into force nearly a month after it was passed by the House of Representatives and after a series of nationwide protests.

Jakarta Globe - November 3, 2020

Thresa Sandra Desfika, Farouk Arnaz, Jakarta – The Confederation of Indonesian Workers' Unions, or KSPI, has filed a judicial review on the 2020 Law about Job Creation to the Constitutional Court on Tuesday, just hours after President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo signed the controversial legislation into law.

Kompas.com - November 3, 2020

Achmad Nasrudin Yahya, Jakarta – Indonesian Human Rights Watch (Imparsial) director Al Araf is asking on the government to reevaluate the security policies applied to bring the conflict in Papua under control.

Kompas.com - November 3, 2020

Devina Halim, Jakarta – The National Human Rights Commission (Komnas HAM) monitoring and investigation team has revealed that there have been efforts to obscure the facts surrounding the shooting of Pastor Yeremia Zanambani in Hitadipa district, Intan Jaya, Papua, on September 19.

Tempo - November 3, 2020

Egi Adyatama, Jakarta – Hundreds of academicians joined in the Alliance of Academics have officially filed a request to President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo asking to revoke Law No. 11/2020 on Job Creation passed by the president earlier today.

Coconuts Bali - November 3, 2020

Hundreds of people in Bali today took to the streets to protest against Arya Wedakarna (AWK), a member of the Regional Representatives Council (DPD) who has been accused of insulting Hinduism, among other allegations of controversial statements.

Jakarta Post - November 3, 2020

Yulia Savitri, Palembang – The South Sumatra provincial administration has continued to carry out preventive measures against forest and land fires as it extends the emergency alert status until Nov. 30.

Jakarta Post - November 3, 2020

Tri Indah Oktavianti, Jakarta – Following reports of high rates of newsroom layoffs due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the International NGO Forum on Indonesian Development (INFID) has urged the government to financially aid media companies in order to help them survive the crisis.

Jakarta Globe - November 3, 2020

Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – The total number of active coronavirus cases has been declining significantly by more than 10,000 cases in the last three weeks amid a downturn in newly cases.

Jakarta Globe - November 3, 2020

Dion Bisara, Lenny Tristia Tambun, Jakarta – The government has acknowledged shocking typos in the 2020 Law on Job Creation but insist on the law, which President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo hope would spearhead Indonesia's massive deregulation plan to spur investment in the next four years, would meet no trouble in its implementation, a minister said on Tuesday.

Jakarta Post - November 3, 2020

Jakarta – Prosecutors are seeking a three-year prison sentence for musician I Gede Ari Astina, who goes by the stage name Jerinx, who is on trial at the Denpasar District Court in Bali for defamation against the Indonesian Medical Association (IDI).

Jakarta Post - November 3, 2020

Moch. Fiqih Prawira Adjie, Jakarta – The State Palace has downplayed typos and errors discovered in the Job Creation Law that was recently signed by President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo, calling them unsubstantial technical errors amid mounting protests highlighting the flawed legislation process for the controversial law.

Jakarta Post - November 3, 2020

Moch. Fiqih Prawira Adjie, Jakarta – The government has named social media influencer Kristia Budiyarto an independent commissioner for state-owned ferry operator PT Pelayaran Nasional Indonesia (Pelni), marking yet another avid supporter of President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo being appointed to a position in a state-owned enterprise (SOE).

November 2, 2020

Jakarta Post - November 2, 2020

Jakarta – Hundreds of Indonesian pilgrims landed in Saudi Arabia on Sunday, marking the first batch of Indonesians arriving for umrah (minor haj) following months of travel restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Jakarta Post - November 2, 2020

Jakarta – National COVID-19 task force spokesman Wiku Adisasmita has deplored the fact that 54 regions have continued to be categorized as "orange zones" for 10 weeks now.

Orange zones, in the government's risk mapping system, are regions where there is a medium risk of COVID-19 infection.

Jakarta Post - November 2, 2020

Jakarta – Protests against the Job Creation Law have entered their fifth week in Jakarta as workers stage yet another rally near the Presidential Palace in Central Jakarta to voice their opposition to the controversial law and the government's decision not to increase the minimum wage.

Jakarta Post - November 2, 2020

Mardika Parama, Jakarta – State-owned railway operator PT Kereta Api Indonesia (KAI) posted a Rp 2.4 trillion (US$163.6 million) loss between January and September, a drastic turn-around from the Rp 1.5 trillion profit booked during the same period last year, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to put pressure on travel demand.

Jakarta Post - November 2, 2020

Jakarta – The Yogyakarta administration is set to conduct COVID-19 tests on tourism players and residents who have been in contact with travelers visiting the special region during the recent long weekend.

Associated Press - November 2, 2020

Andi Jatmiko and Niniek Karmini, Jakarta – Indonesian Muslims marched to the heavily guarded French Embassy in Indonesia's capital on Monday to protest France's president and his staunch support of secular laws that deem caricatures depicting the Prophet Muhammad as protected speech.

Jakarta Post - November 2, 2020

Jakarta – Medan Helvetia Police station in Medan, North Sumatra has set a new routine to prevent its detainees from contracting COVID-19, namely sending them outdoors to soak up the sun for a set amount of time.

The police believed that allowing the detainees to get sunlight in an outdoor setting would increase their immunity.

Jakarta Post - November 2, 2020

Jakarta – Despite thousands of new confirmed COVID-19 cases still being recorded daily, President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has said that Indonesia now has a lower and better active case percentage compared with the global average.

Reuters - November 2, 2020

Jakarta – Indonesia's human rights commission said on Monday that a fact-finding team believed the military had tortured a pastor in the country's Papua region in a bid to extract information on stolen military weapons before shooting him dead.

Asia Pacific Report - November 2, 2020

West Papuan activists and an Indonesian human rights lawyer criticised the recent military crackdown on the two Melanesian provinces of Papua and West Papua in a New Zealand-hosted webinar at the weekend.

Associated Press - November 2, 2020

Edna Tarigan, Jakarta – Thousands of workers in Indonesia on Monday continued their protests against the country's new jobs law that critics say will erode labor rights and weaken environmental protections.

Jakarta Post - November 2, 2020

Jakarta – At least 50 criminal election violations have been reported to the police ahead of 2020 regional elections, the majority of which are related to smear campaigns, National Police spokesman Brig. Gen. Awi Setiyono said on Sunday.

"Twenty-two of the cases are related to activities that benefit or disadvantage one candidate," Awi said as quoted by kompas.com.

Jakarta Post - November 2, 2020

Norman Harsono and Adrian Wail Akhlas, Jakarta – Indonesian coal mining firms expect global coal demand to recover in mid-2021 as economies around the world heal from COVID-19, even though volumes will remain below pre-pandemic levels.

Jakarta Post - November 2, 2020

Dzulfiqar Fathur Rahman, Jakarta – Meybi Agensya Neolaka, born and raised in Kupang, East Nusa Tenggara, started her drumstick leaves company Timor Moringa two years ago with the simple thought that farmers' welfare and stunting in her region is a huge issue to address.

Jakarta Post - November 2, 2020

Jakarta – The Bukittinggi Police in West Sumatra have arrested five members of the Siliwangi Bandung chapter of the Harley Owners Group (HOG) motorcycle club for allegedly beating two Indonesian Military (TNI) personnel in a road rage incident.

Jakarta Globe - November 2, 2020

Fana Suparman & Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – Two high ranking police officers are slated to stand trial today for allegedly taking bribe from Djoko Tjandra in return for removing the businessman from the Interpol wanted list.

Indonesia at Melbourne - November 2, 2020

V. Arianti and Ulta Levenia – News recently emerged that in March 2020, a Jemaah Islamiyah faction in Banten had planned to conduct a series of robberies (fa'i) targeting shops owned by Indonesian Chinese in Serang (Banten), Tasikmalaya (West Java), and Surabaya (East Java). JI hoped to use the proceeds of these robberies to finance attacks in those cities.

Jakarta Post - November 2, 2020

Budi Sutrisno, Jakarta – A soldier allegedly tortured and shot Papuan pastor Yeremia Zanambani at close range in the latter's pig pen in Hitadipa district, Intan Jaya regency, which led to his death hours later amid escalating tensions in the area, according to the findings of an independent investigation carried out by the National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM).

Jakarta Post - November 2, 2020

Jakarta – Prosecutors at the Jakarta Corruption Court have indicted two police generals for accepting bribes of approximately Rp 8.3 billion (US$566,456) in total in exchange for assisting graft convict Djoko Soegiarto Tjandra evade capture when he was a fugitive.

Jakarta Post - November 2, 2020

Arya Dipa, Bandung – As many as 408 tourists have shown reactive results for coronavirus after the West Java administration conducted random COVID-19 rapid tests at 54 tourist destinations in 15 regencies and cities during the long holiday from Wednesday to Sunday last week.

November 1, 2020

Jakarta Post - November 1, 2020

Jakarta – Dozens of domestic tourists taking advantage of the long weekend from Wednesday to Sunday were found to be reactive after taking COVID-19 rapid tests as mobility jumps across the country.

At Borobudur, the largest Buddhist temple in the world located in Magelang, Central Java, authorities confirmed that two visitors had tested positive for the disease.

Jakarta Post - November 1, 2020

Jakarta – Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) chairperson Megawati Soekarnoputri has brushed off criticism against her comments regarding the country's millennials, saying she was pleased her statement had triggered a public discussion on the topic.

Jakarta Post - November 1, 2020

Tri Indah Oktavianti, Jakarta – Storms that hit Greater Jakarta on Sunday have led to blackouts in several parts of the capital and its satellite regions, causing some residents to complain about state-owned electricity firm PLN on social media.

Jakarta Post - November 1, 2020

Jakarta – The Tourism and Creative Economy Ministry is set to revitalize hygiene facilities at several tourist sites in Bali in November.

Jakarta Post - November 1, 2020

Tri Indah Oktavianti, Jakarta – Thousands of workers grouped under several labor confederations are set to stage another round of nationwide protests against the controversial omnibus law on job creation on Monday.

Jakarta Post - November 1, 2020

Dian Septiari, Jakarta – Foreign Minister Retno LP Marsudi announced on Sunday that Indonesia has retained its status as a beneficiary of the United States' Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) following the recent visit of United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Jakarta.

Jakarta Post - November 1, 2020

Jakarta – Recognizing that dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic requires a collective effort, the Jakarta provincial administration launched in April the Large-Scale Social Collaboration (KSBB) program, an initiative to help vulnerable communities affected by the health crisis.

Jakarta Post - November 1, 2020

Jakarta – Eight months into the COVID-19 pandemic, frontline workers are bearing the brunt of the outbreak and are starting to suffer from burnout, a nurse association reveals.

Jakarta Globe - November 1, 2020

Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – A steady decline in newly cases of coronavirus in the last few weeks may suggest that Indonesia has been past its peak, although no confirmation has come from health authorities.

Jakarta Post - November 1, 2020

Jakarta – Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo has announced that his administration will raise the provincial minimum wage for 2021 by 3.27 percent, despite the Manpower Ministry's directions to maintain wages at current levels.

October 31, 2020

Jakarta Globe - October 31, 2020

Jakarta – Former Health Minister Siti Fadilah Supari was released from prison on Saturday after completing her four-year jail sentence for corruption.

Siti, who served during the Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono presidency, was convicted of taking Rp 1.9 billion ($129,000) in bribe concerning a government medical equipment procurement project in 2005.

Jakarta Globe - October 31, 2020

Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – Indonesia reported a single-digit monthly rise in the number of coronavirus cases on Saturday, the slowest growth since the outbreak began in early March.

The country has recorded 123,080 confirmed cases of coronavirus throughout the month to take its total to 410,088.

Jakarta Post - October 31, 2020

Arya Dipa, Bandung – The West Java administration is carrying out randomized COVID-19 screening at 54 tourist destinations across 14 regencies and municipalities to contain transmission of the coronavirus.

The screenings began on Wednesday and are to be conducted until Saturday in anticipation of a large number of travelers during the long weekend.

Jakarta Post - October 31, 2020

Arya Dipa, Bandung – The Bandung-based NGO Syamsi Dhuha Foundation (SDF) in West Java has launched a smart walking cane called BriCane for the visually impaired to help their mobility.

The cane is connected to an application that can warn users when they get lost, said SDF head Dian Syarief.

Jakarta Post - October 31, 2020

Jakarta – Mataram, West Nusa Tenggara, reported zero new COVID-19 cases for six consecutive days from Oct. 24 to 29, but it continues to be categorized as a medium-risk "orange" zone, according to the local coronavirus task force.

Jakarta Post - October 31, 2020

Ghina Ghaliya, Jakarta – The United Development Party (PPP) is considering the prospects of supporting former Jakarta deputy governor and businessman Sandiaga Uno in the 2024 presidential election, with several members of its branch executive board (DPC) promoting his candidacy for PPP chairman.