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Indonesia & East Timor Digest

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September 11, 2021

Suara Papua - September 11, 2021

Jayapura – The West Papua National Committee (KNPB) says that based on their analysis the September 2 killing of four soldiers during an attack on the Kisor sub-district military post in Maybrat regency, West Papua province, the attack is being used as means to force the KNPB into a corner and to criminalise them.

Jakarta Post - September 11, 2021

Ronny Kareni, Canberra – For the last 20 years the 2001 Papua Special Autonomy Law has provided a cover for the expansion of a form of "guided democracy". With the House of Representatives' unanimous decision to pass the revision of the law on July 15, the last vestige of "local autonomy" has now been removed.

September 10, 2021

The Diplomat - September 10, 2021

Sebastian Strangio – Indonesia and Australia have taken an important step toward the deepening of their bilateral security relations, signing new agreements on counterterrorism, defense, and cybersecurity.

Tempo - September 10, 2021

M. Rizqi Akbar, Jakarta – Social media have a very important role in today's life. Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) on May 13, 2017, had issued an edict or fatwa concerning laws and guidelines to use social networking sites responsibly following rampant hoaxes, defamation, blasphemy, and hate of speech related to SARA (ethnicity, religion, and race).

Coconuts Jakarta - September 10, 2021

In what appears to be an attempt to save face, the Indonesian Broadcast Commission (KPI) has once again distanced itself from involvement in the blurring of bikinis worn by female cartoon characters, this time going as far as discouraging TV channels to stop the ridiculous practice.

Mongabay - September 10, 2021

Basten Gokkon, Jakarta – The Indonesian government has unveiled the country's first national priority plan to recover the ecosystems of 15 major lakes in "critical" condition by 2024.

Tempo - September 10, 2021

Adam Prireza, Jakarta – Trisakti University public policy expert Trubus Rahardiansyah on Friday commented on the controversy regarding state officials and their relatives who allegedly received COVID-19 vaccine booster shots, which he deemed counterproductive, as they should be exclusively given to healthcare workers.

Jakarta Globe - September 10, 2021

Maggie Leung, Jakarta – Indonesia and Australia have agreed to strengthen defense cooperation against terrorism and violent extremism and mulled joint military exercises in the future.

Tempo - September 10, 2021

Egha Mahdavickia, Td, Jakarta – The Animal Defenders Indonesia (ADI) on Friday filed a subpoena against Jakarta-owned market operator PD Pasar Jaya over dog meat trade at one of its markets, Pasar Senen (Senen Market). ADI Chairperson Doni Herdaru Tona insisted that the Consumers Protection Law, Food Law, and Agriculture Law prohibits this activity.

Tempo - September 10, 2021

Dewi Nurita, Jakarta – Chairman of the Democrat Party, Agus Harimurti Yudhoyono (AHY), stated that his party would continue to stay out of the ruling coalition and consistently deliver constructive criticism.

Tempo - September 10, 2021

Andita Rahma, Jakarta – Presidential Chief of Staff Moeldoko on Friday officially filed a police report against two Indonesia Corruption Watch (ICW) researchers, Egi Primayogha and Miftah, over slander allegations.

His lawyer, Otto Hasibuan, accompanied him as he filed the report at the National Police Criminal Investigation Division (Bareskrim) headquarters.

September 9, 2021

Jakarta Globe - September 9, 2021

Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – Indonesia reached a new milestone in its Covid-19 response on Thursday when the total number of fully vaccinated citizens topped the 40 million mark, or 19.5 percent of target population.

The government aims to vaccinate 208 million citizens to achieve herd immunity against Covid-19.

Tempo - September 9, 2021

Dewi Nurita, Jakarta – The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) recorded that 70.3 percent of state officials' assets increased during the past year or during the Covid-19 pandemic. Based on Tempo's investigation, one of them is President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo whose assets rose by around Rp8.9 billion.

Australian West Papua Association (Sydney) Statement - September 9, 2021

Australia's Foreign Minister Marise Payne and Australian Defense Minister Peter Dutton are attending the seventh Indonesia-Australia Foreign and Defense Ministers 2+2 dialog in Jakarta starting Thursday (before continuing on to visit New Delhi, Seoul, Washington and New York).

Straits Times - September 9, 2021

Jakarta Post editorial – With daily new cases now back to single-digit numbers, the national bed occupancy rate decreasing to below 30 per cent and the national positivity rate to below 5 per cent for the first time in months on Tuesday (Sept 7), we can say with confidence that the Delta-triggered second wave that crippled the nation in July is easing.

Coconuts Jakarta - September 9, 2021

Though COVID-19 booster shots are not yet available to the general public in Indonesia, government officials, authorities, and their families have jumped the queue to get their jabs, according to Lapor COVID-19.

Tempo - September 9, 2021

Pribadi Wicaksono (Contributor), Jakarta – Governor of Yogyakarta Special Region, Sri Sultan Hamengku Buwono X, on Wednesday presented a brief statistic of the city which has seen a slackened public activity restriction (PPKM) from the previous level 4 to the current level 3.

Jakarta Globe - September 9, 2021

Faisal Maliki Baskoro, Jakarta – The Indonesian central bank has recently inked a deal with its Chinese counterpart on the use of their respective currencies when it comes to bilateral trade.

In fact, Bank Indonesia has reached the so-called local currency settlement with neighboring Malaysia and Thailand since 2018, as well as with Japan since last August.

Eurasia Review - September 9, 2021

Yodi Mahendradhata* – The Indonesian government seems to be transitioning from its pursuit of an elimination endgame in its fight against COVID-19 to a scenario premised on civil cohabitation.

The Strategist - September 9, 2021

Lisa Palmer – The 1999 withdrawal of Indonesia and its military from East Timor eventually ushered in a Timorese – and United Nations – mandated truth and reconciliation process.

The Guardian - September 9, 2021

Daniel Hurst – Indonesian troops could join regular training exercises on Australian soil, as part of a deepening of defence ties with Australia.

Tempo - September 9, 2021

Antara, Jakarta – The Indonesian Ombudsman asked the government not to trade the Covid-19 vaccine before herd immunity is formed in the community. Buying and selling vaccines before the formation of mass immunity was considered unethical.

Reuters - September 9, 2021

Agustinus Beo Da Costa, Jakarta – The death toll from a blaze that tore through Tangerang jail has risen to 44, as authorities pledged to look at whether more inmates could receive rehabilitation for drug-related offences to ease chronic overcrowding in the prison system.

UCA News - September 9, 2021

Ryan Dagur, Jakarta – The Indonesian government has suspended the introduction of a regulation deemed by critics to discriminate against small private schools after a flood of protests from private school administrators including Catholics.

Sydney Morning Herald - September 9, 2021

Chris Barrett and Anthony Galloway, Singapore – Australia has reaffirmed a joint commitment to fight terrorism with Jakarta as a new report warns pro-Islamic State cells in Indonesia are likely to try and launch attacks of their own in the wake of the deadly airport bombing in Taliban-held Kabul.

September 8, 2021

Tempo - September 8, 2021

Budiarti Utami Putri, Jakarta – The sexual violence criminal bill was expected to complete by this year, said Willy Aditya as the Legislation Body (Baleg) deputy chairman of the House of Representatives (DPR). The bill was previously known as the sexual violence eradication bill or RUU PKS.

ABC News - September 8, 2021

David Rising and Niniek Karmini (Associated Press), Jakarta – Overcrowding, mass escapes, protest riots, extremism and corruption: Indonesia's prisons have long been a hotbed of problems.

Tabloid JUBI - September 8, 2021

Hengky Yeimo, Jayapura – The chairman of the Lay Apostolic Commission for the Manokwari-Sorong Diocese, Isak Bame, has reported that residents from five districts in Maybrat Regency are fleeing their villages after the attack on the military post in Kisor Village, South Aifat District on September 2, 2021, which led to security forces sweeping villages searching for the culprit.

Jakarta Globe - September 8, 2021

Chairul Fikri, Bayu Marhaenjati, Grace N. Chandra, Jakarta – On Wednesday, the fire in the Tangerang Class I Penitentiary in Banten had shed light on Indonesia's longstanding problem of overcrowded prisons that have been overwhelmed by the country's legal system's tendency to send drug users to jail instead of rehabilitation facilities in the past decade.

Jakarta Globe - September 8, 2021

Bayu Marhaenjati, Tangerang, Banten – At least 41 inmates still locked in their cells died after fire engulfed at the Tangerang Penitentiary in Banten, just south of Jakarta, early on Wednesday.

Asia Pacific Report - September 8, 2021

Indonesian authorities have been accused of adopting a strategy of deploying military force to drive thousands of Papuans from their homes to make way for powerful business interests.

CNN Indonesia - September 8, 2021

Jakarta – The non-government organisation (NGO) Indonesian Human Rights Watch (Imparsial) says that police violated the law when they arrested a farmer who held up a poster during President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's visit to Blitar, East Java, on Tuesday September 7.

Bloomberg News - September 8, 2021

Grace Sihombing and Claire Jiao – Indonesian consumers were the most pessimistic in 16 years as the government imposed prolonged lockdown measures to curb the virus outbreak that crippled hospitals and led to thousands of deaths.

Coconuts Jakarta - September 8, 2021

An online petition is picking up steam urging the government to scrap a rule requiring people to be vaccinated to be able to enter malls.

Shopping malls in Jakarta and around Indonesia have been reopening in recent weeks following Indonesia's deadliest COVID-19 wave in July and August.

Kompas.com - September 8, 2021

Haryanti Puspa Sari, Jakarta – The co-initiator of the community based volunteer group LaporCovid-19 (Report Covid-19), Ahmad Arif, says that they have received reports that third dose vaccinations or boosters have been given to the families of government officials in Jakarta.

September 7, 2021

CNN Indonesia - September 7, 2021

Jakarta – The Solidarity Action Committee for Munir (KASUM) has listed a number of names of people who are strongly suspected to be involved in the assassination of renowned human rights defender Munir Said Thalib but have yet to be investigated.

Jakarta Globe - September 7, 2021

Jakarta – The government is calling for parents to get their kids aged 12-17 years vaccinated against Covid-19 immediately as schools reopen their doors.

The government has given its green light for a number of schools to hold limited face-to-face classes following a slowdown in Covid-19 cases.

Nikkei Asia - September 7, 2021

Erwida Maulia, Jakarta – Tourist sites in Java will reopen gradually and diners can stay for an hour in a restaurant under the latest easing of COVID-19 mobility restrictions that take effect Tuesday across the densely populated Indonesian island.

Reuters - September 7, 2021

Stanley Widianto, Jakarta – Indonesia's daily coronavirus positivity rate dropped below the World Health Organization's (WHO) benchmark standard of 5% this week for the first time, an indicator the country's devastating second wave could be easing.

Coconuts Jakarta - September 7, 2021

The Jakarta Metro Police is set to enforce a crowd control measure in some of the capital's most popular nightlife hangout areas following what it calls instances of noncompliance for health protocols.

CNN Indonesia - September 7, 2021

Jakarta – As many as 115 pro-democracy figures are urging President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo to go after and prosecute the intellectual actors behind the 2004 assassination of renowned human rights defender Munir Said Thalib.

Tempo - September 7, 2021

Adam Prireza, Jakarta – Jakarta Health Agency's Head of the Disease Prevention and Control Division, Dwi Oktavia, said on Monday, September 6, that 217 new Covid-19 cases were found in the capital. This figure was obtained from the results of PCR tests on 10,083 people.

Radio New Zealand - September 7, 2021

A major bloc of African, Caribbean and Pacific countries has written to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights about their concern over West Papua.

The letter from the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States requests "an urgent mission to West Papua to provide an evidence-based, informed report on the human rights situation" there.

Coconuts Jakarta - September 7, 2021

People with COVID-19 and those who have been in close contact with them have been wandering out and about, especially at malls, data from test and trace app PeduliLindungi shows.

Detik News - September 7, 2021

Kadek Melda Luxiana, Jakarta – The National Human Rights Commission (Komnas HAM) has formed a new monitoring and investigation team to follow up on the assignation of renewed human rights defender Munir Said Thalib. The team will work to determine whether nor not there was a gross human rights violation in the case.

Mongabay - September 7, 2021

Hans Nicholas Jong, Jakarta – Clearing of natural forests has been detected on land licensed to a subsidiary of South Korean paper company Moorim in Indonesia's easternmost region of Papua, indicating an increase in deforestation.

CNN Indonesia - September 7, 2021

Jakarta – The National Human Rights Commission (Komnas HAM) has declared September 7 as Human Rights Defenders Protection Day. This date was taken from the day that renowned human rights defender Munir Said Thalib was assassinated 17 years ago in 2004.

Reuters - September 7, 2021

Michael Taylor, Kuala Lumpur (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Indonesia's electric vehicle drive is likely to overtake its ambitious biodiesel programme within a decade, but will only achieve its aim of helping curb climate change if the country ramps up clean energy investment, environmental researchers say.

Radio New Zealand - September 7, 2021

Reports from West Papua indicate thousands of people have fled their homes to the jungle after the latest deadly violence in Maybrat regency.

Pro-independence fighters with the West Papua Liberation Army have been blamed for killing four Indonesian soldiers on an attack on a military post in Maybrat last week.

September 6, 2021

Tabloid JUBI - September 6, 2021

Hengky Yeimo, Jayapura – Rights defender and lawyer Yan Christian Warinussy, the director of the Institute for Research, Assessment, and Development of Legal Aid (LP3BH) Manokwari, has urged the commander of XVIII/Kasuari Military Command to release Maikel Yaam (17) and Simon Waymbewer (26) who were detained by soldiers of the Battalion 726/VYS and Kodim 1809 Maybrat in Kisor Villag