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Indonesia & East Timor Digest

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December 7, 2022

Jakarta Globe - December 7, 2022

BTV, Bandung – The police are investigating a written message purportedly carried by the suicide bomber who blew himself up at Astana Anyar police station in the West Java capital of Bandung on Wednesday morning.

A piece of paper taped on the front of a moped bike allegedly belonging to the bomber carries a message denouncing the country's Criminal Code.

Tempo - December 7, 2022

Fajar Pebrianto, Jakarta – Center for Indonesia's Strategic Development Initiatives (CISDI) launched criticism against the Criminal Code Bill (RKUHP), which has now been passed by House legislators into the Criminal Code Act (UU KUHP), as they believe legislators failed to consider public health perspective in formulating the latest law.

Star Observer - December 7, 2022

Douglas Magaletti – On Tuesday, in a unanimous vote, the Indonesian Parliament made sex outside of marriage illegal.

The ban, which is part of a larger overhaul of the country's criminal code would make extramarital sex punishable by a year in jail. Couples who are not married but live together could be jailed for six months or fined 10 million rupiah ($956).

AsiaOne - December 7, 2022

Resty Woro Yuniar – Indonesia has passed into law a controversial criminal code that human rights activists and civil groups say could potentially send the world's third-largest democracy back to authoritarian rule.

Jakarta Globe - December 7, 2022

Fana Suparman & Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – High-profile terror convict Umar Patek was released on parole on Wednesday, 20 years after the twin bombings at Bali nightclubs that killed more than 200 people of mostly foreigners.

Jakarta Post - December 7, 2022

Tunggul Wirajuda, Jakarta – To keep the iconic Indonesian dagger relevant today, kris experts carried out the age-old puja rahayu ningrat ceremony at Jakarta's Bentara Budaya cultural center.

CNS News - December 7, 2022

Patrick Goodenough – The United States is assessing legislation passed by Indonesian lawmakers Tuesday that outlaws sex outside of marriage – including for non-citizens – and is concerned about its impact on civil liberties and the investment climate for U.S. companies, State Department spokesman Ned Price told reporters.

Tempo - December 7, 2022

Riani Sanusi Putri, Jakarta – The Indonesian Farmers Union (SPI) head of national strategic studies Mujahid Widian on Tuesday lamented the irony in the rice import conducted by the government, which he said is down to the timing of the import. He said that rice farmers will soon conduct a grand harvest in early 2023.

Jakarta Post - December 7, 2022

Apriadi Gunawan, Medan – The National Police have arrested two Indonesian Military (TNI) personnel allegedly in possession of 40,000 ecstasy pills and 75 kilograms of crystal methamphetamine smuggled from abroad in Deli Serdang, North Sumatra.

December 6, 2022

Tempo - December 6, 2022

Ima Dini Shafira, Jakarta – The police started to disperse people demonstrating against the ratification of the criminal code bill (RKUHP) before the Parliament building today, December 6, 2022. The Alliance of Criminal Code Reform staged a symbolic rally, setting up camping tents in front of the House of Representatives or DPR because of emergency democracy.

Jakarta Globe - December 6, 2022

Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's biggest supporting group Projo claimed that he remains open to any potential candidates for his successor in the 2024 election, but the supporters of Ganjar Pranowo are convinced that the president has already made up his mind.

Agence France-Presse - December 6, 2022

Lumajang, East Java – Rescuers evacuated more people Monday from nearby villages after the eruption of Mount Semeru, with officials warning of danger from cooling lava despite less activity from the volcano.

More than 2,400 villagers have now fled their homes and taken shelter in 11 evacuation centres after the highest mountain in Java erupted early morning Sunday.

Jakarta Post - December 6, 2022

Editorial board, Jakarta – The legislation of the revised Criminal Code (KUHP) has been expedited for passing as soon as possible. Despite its revisions, the newer KUHP is no better than its previous iteration, so we have no qualms about calling on the House of Representatives to reconsider its passage.

CNN Indonesia - December 6, 2022

Jakarta – Civil society organisations which make up the National Alliance for Criminal Code Reform have slammed the decision by the government and the House of Representatives (DPR) to ratify the Draft Criminal Code (RKUHP) which is seen as still containing a number of controversial articles.

Indonesia at Melbourne - December 6, 2022

Dina Afrianty – Last Saturday, 3 December, the world marked the International Day of People with Disability, an annual event designed to "increase public awareness, understanding and acceptance of people with disability".

Sydney Morning Herald - December 6, 2022

Chris Barrett and Karuni Rompies, Singapore/Jakarta – Australian tourists in Bali could be ensnared by a new Indonesian law punishing sex outside marriage with up to a year in jail, although officials say visitors "shouldn't be worried".

Jakarta Globe - December 6, 2022

BTV, Tembagapura, Papua – Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati visited Freeport Indonesia's underground mine in the Papua's highland area of Tembagapura on Sunday to see firsthand how "the country's valuable asset" operates.

Tempo - December 6, 2022

Ima Dini Shafira, Jakarta – The Criminal Code Draft or RKUHP has officially been passed in Tuesday's 11th plenary session at the House of Representatives (DPR) headquarters. Prior to Bill's official passing into law, a heated argument took place between Commission VII legislator from the PKS faction Iskan Qolba Lubis and Deputy Speaker Sufmi Dasco Ahmad.

Tempo - December 6, 2022

Nabila Nurshafira, Jakarta – The Alliance of Independent Journalists (AJI) on Monday protested against the passing of what they deem as principally troublesome provisions in the Criminal Code Draft Bill (RKUHP). The ongoing offline and online protests are set to last until Wednesday, December 7.

CNN Indonesia - December 6, 2022

Jakarta – A number of academics have strongly criticised the decision by the House of Representatives (DPR) and the government of President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo to enact the Draft Criminal Code (RKUHP) into law today, Tuesday December 6.

Tabloid JUBI - December 6, 2022

Jayapura, Jubi – As many as 20 residents of Kiwirok District who fled to Oksibil, the capital of Bintang Mountains Regency, Mountainous Papua Province, returned to their hometowns on Tuesday, November 29, 2022. The Cartenz Peace Task Force sent health workers to treat the displaced people.

Jakarta Globe - December 6, 2022

Yustinus Paat & Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – The House of Representatives on Tuesday enacted the bill on the Criminal Code into law despite mounting public criticisms over its controversial articles, including one that criminalizes sex outside of marriage.

Antara News - December 6, 2022

Suci Nurhaliza, Fadhli Ruhman, Jakarta – Violence, including sexual violence, originates from one's thought process or seeing other people, Head of the National Commission on Violence against Women's (Komnas Perempuan's) Education Sub-commission Alimatul Qibtiyah stated.

Financial Review - December 6, 2022

Emma Connors, Singapore/Jakarta – Indonesia's national parliament has approved sweeping changes that include jail sentences for consensual sex between unmarried people in the Muslim-majority country and make criticising the country's President a crime.

Agence France-Presse - December 6, 2022

Jakarta – The House of Representatives is expected to ratify sweeping changes to its criminal code on Tuesday, senior officials confirmed, in a legal overhaul that critics say could curb freedoms and police morality in Indonesia.

CNN Indonesia - December 6, 2022

Jakarta – The Draft Criminal Code (RKUHP), which was only just passed into law by the House of Representatives (DPR) and the government at a plenary meeting on the afternoon of Tuesday December 6, has attracted widespread opposition.

CNN Indonesia - December 6, 2022

Jakarta – Since 2019 the government and the House of Representatives (DPR) have often given the impression of rushing to pass the Draft Criminal Code (RKUHP) into law.

Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) Statement - December 6, 2022

New York – In response to news reports that Indonesian lawmakers passed a new criminal code with provisions that restrict press freedom, the Committee to Protect Journalists issued the following statement Tuesday calling for authorities to rescind the legislation:

The Guardian - December 6, 2022

Lorcan Lovett in Bangkok and Oliver Holmes – Indonesia's parliament has overhauled the country's criminal code to outlaw sex outside marriage and curtail free speech, in a dramatic setback to freedoms in the world's third-largest democracy.

Tempo - December 6, 2022

Ima Dini Shafira, Jakarta – The Alliance of Criminal Code Reform held again a symbolic action rejecting the ratification of the criminal code bill or RKUHP in front of the House of Representatives (DPR) Building today, December 6, 2022. Dozens of demonstrators arrived at around 14:30 Jakarta time, bringing camping equipment, such as tents, small stoves, and mats.

December 5, 2022

Tabloid JUBI - December 5, 2022

Jayapura, Jubi – Senior Papuan journalist and chief editor of Jubi, Victor Mambor, said Papuan students should start writing about Papua's conflict as clear writing was important in the midst of the current noise and flood of information on problems that occur in Papua.

Jakarta Post - December 5, 2022

Yerica Lai. Jakarta – Navy Chief of Staff Adm. Yudo Margono, the only candidate nominated by President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo as the Indonesian Military (TNI) commander, said at his confirmation hearing on Friday that he would strengthen maritime defense to help realize the President's vision of turning the country as a "global maritime fulcrum".

Jakarta Post - December 5, 2022

Divya Karyza, Jakarta – Electric vehicle (EV) producers are confident that the planned subsidy for purchasing electric cars and electric motorcycles will drive EV sales in Indonesia.

Jakarta Post - December 5, 2022

Tenggara Strategics, Jakarta – President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has proposed Navy chief of staff Admiral Yudo Margono as the new commander of the Indonesian Military (TNI).

Macao News - December 5, 2022

Timor-Leste has authorised a US$73.3 million finance agreement with Australia for works at Dili Airport.

"This is the last leg of the funding, so that progress can now be made on the project. We will now issue international tenders for this large-scale project," said Timor-Leste's Finance Minister Rui Gomes.

Jakarta Globe - December 5, 2022

Jakarta – The Indonesian Financial Services Authority, or OJK, has revoked the business license of Asuransi Jiwa Adisarana Wanaartha, better known as Wanaartha Life, as the company failed to meet the solvency requirements set by the authority, an official said on Monday.

Eurasia Review - December 5, 2022

P. K. Balachandran – In a sharp turn towards authoritarianism and archaic religiosity, Indonesia's parliament is expected to pass, within a few days, a new Criminal Code that will extend the ambit of blasphemy, ban criticism of State Institutions and criminalize cohabitation and sexual relations outside wedlock.

Jakarta Globe - December 5, 2022

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – Indonesia will helm the ASEAN bloc in 2023, and in the same year, Sweden will assume the chairmanship of the Council of the European Union. The green transition will likely become a large part of the collaboration as the two countries lead the world's two major trading blocs, according to a Swedish envoy.

Melbourne Asia Review - December 5, 2022

Abdil Mughis Mdhoffir, Melbourne, Australia – It is a myth that civil society is a backbone of democracy.

Detik News - December 5, 2022

Adrial Akbar, Jakarta – Protesters opposing tomorrow's planned enactment of the Draft Criminal Code (RKUHP) have arrived in front of the House of Representatives (DPR) building in Jakarta. They brought with them posters containing their demands and yellow flags symbolising death.

Radio New Zealand - December 5, 2022

Activists protested at the Ternate Police headquarters, North Maluku demanding the force release eight people arrested while commemorating the West Papua Independence Day on December 1.

December 1 marked 61 years since the first raising of West Papua's symbol of independence, the Morning Star flag.

Global Voices - December 5, 2022

Juliana Harsianti – The long-awaited Indonesian Personal Data Protection Bill was approved by the parliament on September 20, 2022.

Jakarta Post - December 5, 2022

Fikri Harish, Jakarta – After signaling earlier that he would set up a special National Health Insurance (JKN) program for the wealthy under the Health Care and Social Security Agency (BPJS Kesehatan), Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin has clarified that the facility would maintain universal coverage of only basic health needs (KDK).

Jakarta Post Editorial - December 5, 2022

Jakarta – Early in October President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo was upbeat, thinking the government was an inch closer to declaring the COVID-19 pandemic over. That such a hope has not been realized after about two months may, however, be a blessing in disguise, simply because we are not yet certain whether we have managed to get the pandemic under control.

Bloomberg News - December 5, 2022

Jakarta – With its gleaming offices, electric buses and economically productive residents, Nusantara is the quintessential modern metropolis – smack in the middle of a vast rainforest.

UCA News - December 5, 2022

Indonesian Church activists lamented the cancellation of the visit of the US special envoy to advance the rights of LGBTQI+ persons following opposition from hardline Muslim groups.

The US embassy in Jakarta announced on Dec. 2 it was canceling a visit by Jessica Stern to the Muslim-majority country planned for Dec. 7-9.

Macao News - December 5, 2022

The Timorese state oil company Timor GAP, the majority partner in the Greater Sunrise consortium in the Timor Sea, has informed Australia's Woodside of its intention to replace it as operator of the project.

Timor GAP holds 56.56 per cent of the Greater Sunrise consortium, in which Woodside has 33.44 per cent, and Japanese Osaka Gas company has 10 per cent.

Jakarta Globe - December 5, 2022

BTV, Cianjur, West Java – The government will build 1,800 earthquake-resistant houses for residents in areas worst hit by the November 21 earthquake that killed more than 300 people in the West Java district of Cianjur, President Joko Widodo said on Monday.

The Conversation - December 5, 2022

Dave McRae, Daniel Russo-Batterham, Kim Doyle and Maria del Mar Quiroga. Jakarta – Online discussion about the conflict over independence in Indonesia's easternmost provinces – the Papua conflict – is a fiercely contested space.

December 4, 2022

Jakarta Post - December 4, 2022

Agencies, Jakarta – A quake of 6.1 magnitude hit West Java area on Saturday, the Geophysics Agency BMKG said, sending people running out of buildings.

The quake has no tsunami potential, the agency said. It was felt in capital Jakarta, around 200 km from the epicentre.