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Indonesia & East Timor Digest

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January 11, 2024

Jakarta Post - January 11, 2024

Bogor, West Java – Indonesia's commitment to reach net-zero emissions by 2060 or sooner will be supported by the country's massive renewable energy potential, but developing this must be backed up by science, bureaucrats and scientists have warned.

Jakarta Post - January 11, 2024

Bogor, West Java – Mount Gede Pangrango National Park has released an adult female Javan hawk-eagle (Nisaetus bartelsi) named Kalina into the wild after 21 months of rehabilitation.

The release was overseen by Mount Gede Pangrango National Park Center chief Sapto Aji Prabowo at the Cimungkad Resort of the park in Sukabumi regency, West Java, on Jan 4.

Jakarta Post - January 11, 2024

Jakarta – Presidential candidate Ganjar Pranowo did not rule out the option of cooperating with rival candidate Anies Baswedan if the 2024 presidential election moved into a second round.

"Everything is possible," said Ganjar in Banyumas, Central Java, on Tuesday, as quoted by Kompas.

Jakarta Post - January 11, 2024

Jakarta – Vice presidential candidate Gibran Rakabuming Raka urged his supporters and volunteers in Bali to work hard to win the election in one round.

"Ladies and gentlemen, Bali needs special attention. [We] need to work extra hard to win in one round," Gibran said while campaigning in Denpasar, Bali, on Tuesday, as quoted by Kompas.

Jakarta Globe - January 11, 2024

Muhammad Aulia, Jakarta – In a shocking revelation, more than 50 employees of the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) are alleged to have accepted bribes from suspects detained at the commission's facility.

Tempo - January 11, 2024

Adil Al Hasan, Jakarta – The Secretary-General of the Indonesia Democratic Party of Struggle or PDIP Hasto Kristiyanto admitted that Ganjar Pranowo-Mahfud Md winning team has been communicating with the winning team of Anies Baswedan-Muhaimin Iskandar to tackle the intimidation they received.

The Economist - January 11, 2024

In a month's time some 204m Indonesians can vote in a first round to choose their new president. Two of three presidential candidates are emblematic of reformasi – that is, the era of often impressive democratic development since the fall of Suharto, the long-ruling late dictator, in 1998.

Jakarta Globe - January 11, 2024

Antara, Jakarta – Tourism and Creative Economy Minister, Sandiaga Salahuddin Uno, has reassured that the recent increase in the entertainment tax rates for service providers will not adversely affect the tourism sector.

Jakarta Post - January 11, 2024

Jakarta – Vice presidential candidate Muhaimin Iskandar said ensuring that people had a source of income and could buy basic goods at low prices was one of the government's responsibilities.

Jakarta Globe - January 11, 2024

Ichsan Ali, Jakarta – Presidential candidate and Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto has announced plans to expedite the construction of coastal and giant sea wall defenses along the shores of Java Island, addressing the recurring issue of the island's northern coast sinking each year.

Indo News - January 11, 2024

Jakarta – A study by the Institute for Development of Economics and Finance (INDEF) on the decline of democracy in Indonesia since 2020 found that the results were not pleasing. If this decline in democracy continues, the result is predicted to be worse than expected.

Jakarta Globe - January 11, 2024

Nabiel Gibran El Rizani, Jakarta – A regent in North Sumatra province who is also a politician of the National Democratic Party (Nasdem) was arrested Thursday morning along with several other individuals for alleged bribery.

Jakarta Globe - January 11, 2024

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo said Thursday that the Philippines was a satisfied customer of the defense equipment supplied by Indonesian state-owned enterprises.

Tempo - January 11, 2024

Antara, Jakarta – Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (KKP) Minister Sakti Wahyu Trenggono emphasized the importance of ecology in the efforts to manage coastal areas through construction of coastal and sea embankments, commonly known as the Giant Sea Wall.

Jakarta Post Editorial - January 11, 2024

Jakarta – The most recent election debate, which had our presidential candidates spar over foreign and defense policy last Sunday, at one point veered off into a heated exchange about deficit spending and government debt.

Jakarta Globe - January 11, 2024

Yusitnus Paat, Bengkulu – Presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto shared his reflections on Thursday, recalling how he fiercely contested President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo in two previous elections.

Despite the intense rivalry, Prabowo said that they have now become friends, collaborating in various capacities, including sharing duties in the cabinet.

January 10, 2024

Jakarta Post Editorial - January 10, 2024

Jakarta – Amid a rampant crack-down on human rights, environmental and democracy activists for their critical views of the government, the acquittal from defamation charges of Haris Azhar and Fatia Maulidiyanti, both former coordinators of the Commission for the Disappeared and Victims of Violence (KontraS), is indeed relieving.

Jakarta Globe - January 10, 2024

Muhammad Aulia, Jakarta – The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) announced Wednesday it's investigating alleged corruption in the government procurement of personal protective equipment (PPE) during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The government has allocated a budget of Rp 3 trillion ($192.8 million) for the procurement by the Health Ministry in fiscal years 2020-22.

Jakarta Post - January 10, 2024

Nur Janti, Jakarta – Starting this year, COVID-19 vaccinations will only be free for members of vulnerable groups, while the rest of the general public will need to pay to get the jab, the Health Ministry has announced.

Mongabay - January 10, 2024

Hans Nicholas Jong, Jakarta – Fires razed nearly 1 million hectares (2.47 million acres) of lands and forests in Indonesia in 2023, as the country suffered from unusually scorching weather due to El Nino and burning for new plantations.

CNN Indonesia - January 10, 2024

Jakarta – The Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (Kontras) believes that the attitude of the public prosecutor, who has submitted an appeal against the acquittal of rights defenders Haris Azhar and Fatia Maulidiyanti in a defamation case brought against them by Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, is a step backward.

Jakarta Globe - January 10, 2024

Rizky Ramadhan, Jakarta – The Financial Services Authority (OJK) has successfully shut down operations of 2,248 illegal online loans (pinjol) and 40 illegal investments in 2023.

Tempo - January 10, 2024

Riri Rahayu, Han Revanda Putra, Antara, Jakarta – The spokesperson for Prabowo Subianto-Gibran Rakabuming Raka, Eddy Soeparno, claimed that he is surprised that any presidential candidate plans to evaluate the Job Creation Law.

Ruetir - January 10, 2024

Suara.com – Police said that hundreds of stolen motorbikes and cars stored at the Balkir Pusziad Warehouse, Sidoarjo, East Java were about to be sold to Timor Leste. The shipping process is carried out via Tanjung Perak Port.

Tempo - January 10, 2024

Laila Afifa, Jakarta – The presidential and vice-presidential candidates are relying entirely on gimmicks to exploit the emotions of the people. This moves the campaign away from substantive discussions.

Jakarta Globe - January 10, 2024

Antara, Jakarta – State-owned utility company PLN is repurposing its electric poles into public electric vehicle charging stations (SPKLU). This move aims to facilitate electric vehicle (EV) users in charging their electric cars more conveniently, contributing to the acceleration of electric vehicle adoption in the country.

Jakarta Globe - January 10, 2024

Muhammad Fakhruddin, Jakarta – Presidential candidates engaged in a heated exchange regarding the transparency of Indonesia's defense data in the third presidential debate for the 2024 election on Sunday, Prabowo Subianto, who is also the current defense minister, remained steadfast in refusing to disclose the information, despite continuous pressure from rival Anies Baswedan.

Tabloid Jubi - January 10, 2024

Manokwari, Jubi – Manuel Yenusi, the head of Sorong Class II B Penitentiary in Manokwari, Southwest Papua reported that 53 inmates escaped following a religious service. The incident occurred on Sunday, January 7, 2024.

Yenusi mentioned that the incident coincided with the sound of fireworks after the church service ended at 11:00 a.m. Papua time.

Jakarta Globe - January 10, 2024

Didik Fibrianto, Malang – East Java Governor Khofifah Indar Parawansa officially extended her support to presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto on Wednesday, marking a pivotal endorsement for the upcoming presidential race.

Khofifah not only declared her endorsement but also expressed her desire to actively participate in Prabowo's campaign team.

Jakarta Globe - January 10, 2024

Agnes Valentina Christa, Jakarta – The government has extended financial compensations to the families of patients affected by acute kidney injury cases in 2022 and 2023. The aid amounts to Rp 50 million ($3.200) for each deceased patient and Rp 60 million for each surviving patient.

CNN Indonesia - January 10, 2024

Jakarta – The Civil Society Coalition for Security Sector Reform is asking that all legal proceedings against political opponents that smack of politics as well as socialisation and campaign activities in the 2024 elections be stopped.

Bloomberg News - January 10, 2024

Faris Mokhtar and Chandra Asmara – Indonesia is reviving plans to construct a giant sea wall in the latest of measures to prevent its capital city of Jakarta from sinking at a faster rate.

Indonesia at Melbourne - January 10, 2024

Tim Mann – Two former coordinators of one of Indonesia's most prominent human rights organisations have escaped conviction in a defamation case brought by a powerful government minister. While their astonishing acquittal is welcome, the case marked a bleak new low for freedom of expression in one of the world's largest democracies.

Jakarta Post - January 10, 2024

Jakarta – The capital market is the key to developing Indonesia's economy, according to the Anies Baswedan-Muhaimin Iskandar campaign team.

Jakarta Post - January 10, 2024

Jakarta – The occupational safety and health (OSH) standard at the nickel-focused Indonesia Morowali Industrial Park (IMIP) is under scrutiny after explosions blasted in Tsinghan subsidiary Indonesia Tsingshan Stainless Steel's (ITSS) nickel furnace located in the industrial park.

Tempo - January 10, 2024

Riri Rahayu, Jakarta – Indonesian Coordinating Minister for the Economy Airlangga Hartarto said tidal flooding caused by sinking land and rising sea levels is threatening the north coast or Pantura of Java, including Jakarta. He revealed that the estimated economic loss due to the disaster in the capital alone reached Rp2.1 trillion.

Asia Pacific Report - January 10, 2024

Yamin Kogoya, Jayapura – Papuans regard December as both the most sacred and toughest month of the year.

December holds great significance in West Papua for two distinct reasons. First, the date December 1 signifies a pivotal national moment for Papuans, symbolising the birth of their nationhood.

South China Morning Post - January 10, 2024

Amy Sood – The fallout between President Joko Widodo and the ruling Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) spilled out into the open on Wednesday after the party's grand dame delivered a speech with a thinly veiled attack on his loyalty at an event to which he was not invited.

Jakarta Post - January 10, 2024

Jakarta – Some of the fresh graduates entering the civil service in 2024 recruitment could begin their jobs immediately in Nusantara Capital City (IKN), Administrative and Bureaucratic Reform Minister Abdullah Azwar Anas said on Monday.

Jakarta Post - January 10, 2024

Jakarta – The Prabowo Subianto-Gibran Rakabuming Raka campaign team says the presidential ticket aims to strengthen supervision of the country's capital markets, including protection from stock manipulation.

Jakarta Globe - January 10, 2024

Edo Rusyanto, Jakarta – Indonesia recorded a child marriage rate of 9.23 percent in 2023, equivalent to 163,371 incidents, according to the latest data from the Central Statistics Agency (BPS).

This means that one out of nine females experiences child marriage. In contrast, the ratio is 1 in 100 for males aged 20-24 who marry as children.

Tabloid Jubi - January 10, 2024

Jayapura, Jubi – Made Sudayasa, an expert cultural officer from the Cultural Heritage Preservation Center of Region XXII in Papua, expressed his concerns regarding the escalating development that jeopardizes the preservation of historical, educational, religious, and cultural artifacts in Papua Province.

January 9, 2024

The Guardian - January 9, 2024

Rebecca Ratcliffe Randy Mulyanto in Jakarta – He is a former general who was dismissed from the military amid allegations he was involved in kidnapping and torture. But today, Prabowo Subianto, frontrunner in Indonesia's looming election, projects a very different image: a cute grandpa with awkward dance moves and a softer side.

Republika - January 9, 2024

Jakarta – The acquittal of human rights defenders Haris Azhar and Fatia Maulidiyanti is seen as a milestone and a victory for freedom of expression, and sets a good precedent for the fight against the criminalisation of activists.

The Institute for Criminal Justice Reform (ICJR) says it appreciates the court's decision to release Azhar and Maulidiyanti.

Suara Papua - January 9, 2024

Jayapura – West Papua National Liberation Army-Free Papua Organisation (TPNPB-OPM) spokesperson Sebby Sambom has expressed his gratitude to Haris Azhar and Fatia Maulidiyanti who were found not guilty by the East Jakarta District Court on Monday January 8.

Jakarta Post - January 9, 2024

Jakarta – In a break from the tradition of courtesy and respect, presidential candidates Anies Baswedan and Prabowo Subianto did not shake hands on Sunday night after spending about three hours in a heated debate that saw the frontrunner Prabowo defending his programs as defense minister.

Jakarta Globe - January 9, 2024

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – From a presidential palace renovation to oil gas fields, President Joko "Jokowi " Widodo's economy-heavy diplomacy has culminated in Indonesian state-owned enterprises or SOEs expanding overseas.

Mongabay - January 9, 2024

Hans Nicholas Jong, Jakarta – After years of declining deforestation, forest loss caused by Indonesia's pulp sector is on the rise again, showing a fivefold increase in 2022 compared with 2017 levels, a new analysis shows.

Jakarta Globe - January 9, 2024

Whisnu Bagus Prasetyo, Jeddah – Indonesia, home to the world's largest Muslim population, is set to send a record-breaking 241,000 hajj pilgrims to Mecca for the 2024 hajj season.

Religious Affairs Minister Yaqut Cholil Qoumas, and Saudi Arabia's Hajj and Umrah Minister, Tawfiq F Al-Rabiah officially signed the 2024 hajj agreement (ta'limatul hajj) in Jeddah on Monday.

Tempo - January 9, 2024

Yuni Rohmawati, Jakarta – The director of Imparsial Gufron Mabruri said that the acquittal of Haris Azhar and Fatia Maulidiyanti is a small win for the fight for human rights in Indonesia. Both activists were sued over alleged defamation against the Coordinating Minister for Maritime and Investment Affairs Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan.