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Indonesia & East Timor Digest

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August 25, 2021

Tempo - August 25, 2021

Dewi Nurita, Jakarta – Indonesia's Covid-19 mortality rate was still at 3.2 percent or higher than the global average of 2.09 percent, said the Covid-19 Task Force spokesperson Wiku Adisasmito.

Coconuts Jakarta - August 25, 2021

PeduliLindungi will be essential at all ports, terminals, and stations starting Aug. 28, as passengers must use the integrated health/mobility tracking app to comply with health and administrative requirements for domestic travel.

Coconuts Bali - August 25, 2021

A local resident has come forward to offer his side of the story following a viral video showing uniformed military officers assaulting two civilians in Bali's Buleleng regency, claiming that he wasn't resisting when the abuse took place.

Tempo - August 25, 2021

Dewi Nurita, Jakarta – Irma Hidayana, founder of independent data initiative LaporCOVID-19, deplores claims by a number of officials saying they have received third doses of Covid-19. According to Irma, the officials violated the regulations by getting vaccine boosters now.

Radio New Zealand - August 25, 2021

Johnny Blades – The trial of West Papuan political prisoner Victor Yeimo has begun in an Indonesian court in Jayapura.

Yeimo, who is a spokesman for the pro-independence West Papua National Committee (KNPB), is charged with treason and incitement over his alleged role in anti-racism protests that turned into riots in 2019.

Antara News - August 25, 2021

Muhammad Z, Suharto, Jakarta – Cases of violence against women have spiked significantly in Indonesia amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the National Commission on Anti-Violence against Women (Komnas Perempuan) has said.

UCA News - August 25, 2021

Konradus Epa, Jakarta – Indonesian police have arrested a Christian YouTuber after a series of complaints were filed by Muslims accusing him of blasphemy.

Muhammad Kace, a former Muslim who converted to Christianity, is accused of insulting Islam and the Prophet Muhammad by claiming the prophet was "surrounded by devils and liars."

CNN Indonesia - August 25, 2021

Jakarta – A number of murals and graffiti with a critical tone on walls in busy locations have been removed recently. The aggressive removal of the critical murals has largely been done by regional officials and police in their respective areas.

August 24, 2021

Tabloid JUBI - August 24, 2021

Victor Mambor, Jayapura, Jubi – The past three years have seen an unending illegal deployment of Indonesian military forces in the central highlands of Papua, internationally known as West Papua, which has triggered an escalated armed conflict between the military and the West Papua National Liberation Army (TPNPB), as well as violence against civilians.

Jakarta Globe - August 24, 2021

Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – Indonesia expects to receive 80.7 million doses of Covid-19 vaccine through government purchase and multilateral donations next month, Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin said on Tuesday.

Sydney Morning Herald - August 24, 2021

Chris Barrett, Singapore – Afghan refugees in Jakarta defied lockdown restrictions and fought with police as they protested against falling humanitarian intakes by Australia and other countries.

Jakarta Globe - August 24, 2021

Jakarta – Indonesia passed 4 million Covid-19 cases on Tuesday after recording 19,106 new cases in the past 24 hours, government figures show. Southeast Asia's biggest nation now has a total of 4,008,166 cases.

A further 1,038 Covid-19 deaths have been registered in the one-day period, bringing the total death toll to 128,252.

Tempo - August 24, 2021

Francisca Christy Rosana, Jakarta – The government issued a new regulation regarding the enforcement of four-tiered public mobility restrictions (PPKM) on August 24-30, 2021.

The rule is noted in the Instruction of the Home Affairs Ministerial No. 35 of 2021 concerning Level 4, 3, and 2 PPKM in the Java-Bali region.

Jakarta Post - August 24, 2021

Rifki Nurfajri, Jakarta – The government has pledged to take care of thousands of children orphaned by the COVID-19 pandemic, amid revelations of inadequate data collection preventing this growing social problem from being properly addressed.

Coconuts Jakarta - August 24, 2021

To the surprise of absolutely nobody, Jakarta was named among cities with bad urban planning by an architecture publication, prompting an expected, if somewhat defensive, response from the capital's vice governor.

Tempo - August 24, 2021

Egi Adyatama, Jakarta – Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin said that so far 90 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines have been injected into Indonesian citizens. According to Budi, this makes Indonesia ranks 9th in the world for the number of injections.

ABC News - August 24, 2021

Indonesia is reopening restaurants, malls and places of worship in some areas including the capital, Jakarta, after new coronavirus cases fell sharply from their peak and vaccinations rose.

President Joko Widodo said restaurants and places of worship in parts of the country would be able to operate at 25 per cent capacity and shopping malls at 50 per cent from today.

Coconuts Jakarta - August 24, 2021

Rome wasn't built in a day, but you can bet your Samarinda yellow rice that all the potholes can be filled up in no time whenever the president comes to town.

President Joko Widodo visited Samarinda today to inspect the mass vaccination program in the East Kalimantan capital.

August 23, 2021

The Strategist - August 23, 2021

Donald Greenlees – A persistent question lurking in the background of Australia's alliance with the US has always been whether our powerful ally would come to our aid in a time of military crisis.

Tabloid JUBI - August 23, 2021

Catherine Delahunty, Jayapura – When I first met West Papuan activist Paula Makabory, she told me she came from the land of the "Morning Star", home to the bird of paradise. In the same breath, she said her people were living in an occupied country – and they were bleeding.

I had no idea at the time where West Papua was, but meeting Paula changed the world map in my head.

Coconuts Bali - August 23, 2021

While it's no secret that tourism plays a huge role in Bali's economy, an expert from the Udayana University says the pandemic is a lesson for the hugely popular holiday destination to grow out of its dependence on foreign tourists.

Jakarta Globe - August 23, 2021

Jakarta – Indonesia recorded fewer than 1,000 Covid-19 deaths for the first time in over two months on Monday while the daily count of newly cases also fell to below 10,000 as the lengthy community restrictions appear to deliver positive impacts.

Tabloid JUBI - August 23, 2021

Theo Kelen, Jayapura – Director of the Indonesian Women's Legal Aid Institute for Justice (LBH APIK) Jayapura Nur Aida Duwila said reports of sexual violence against children in Papua continued to increase from 2019 to 2021.

Indonesia at Melbourne - August 23, 2021

Maidina Rahmawati and Erasmus AT Napitupulu – Over the past few weeks, police and local governments have painted over at least three murals voicing public criticism about the government's management of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Jakarta Post - August 23, 2021

Jakarta (Agencies) – Indonesia will from Tuesday start to allow the partial reopening of restaurants, shopping malls and places of worship in some areas, including in the capital Jakarta and the holiday island of Bali, President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo said on Monday.

Jakarta Globe - August 23, 2021

Fana Suparman, Jakarta – Former social affairs minister Juliari Peter Batubara was found guilty on Monday of accepting bribes in government's social assistance project for families affected by the Covid-19 pandemic and sentenced to 12 years in prison.

East Asia Forum - August 23, 2021

Liam Gammon – Two genres of viral video encapsulate Indonesia's devastating wave of COVID-19 infections over the past six weeks.

August 22, 2021

Reuters - August 22, 2021

Jakarta – Indonesia has moved its Afghanistan diplomatic mission from Kabul to Pakistan, Foreign Minister Retno LP Marsudi said on Saturday, after its air force evacuated dozens in the wake of the Taliban's seizure of power.

Jakarta Globe - August 22, 2021

Jakarta – Indonesia recorded the lowest daily tally of Covid-19 cases in more than two months on Sunday, with figures returning to the level before the highly contagious Delta variant began to dominate new infections.

The country has added 12,408 new cases in the past 24 hours, the lowest daily count since June 16, to take its total to 3,979,456, government figures show.

Tabloid JUBI - August 22, 2021

Victor Mambor, Jayapura – Ferianus Asso, the victim of a police shooting during a peaceful demonstration in Dekai, Yahukimo regency on Monday August 16, which was demanding the release of Papua activist Victor Yeimo, has reportedly died in hospital in Jayapura.

August 21, 2021

The Economist - August 21, 2021
Agree or disagree: "Homosexuals should be given corporal punishment." That is one of the many odd questions posed in a civil-service exam taken by the 1,300 employees of Indonesia's Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) in April. The formerly independent anti-graft agency is to be folded into the civil service, thus requiring its staff to pass an entrance test.
The Conversation - August 21, 2021

Tim Lindsey – Soeharto was the giant of modern Indonesia. For many Indonesians, his resignation in 1998 after 32 years in power is still a watershed moment. Much that has happened since has been a reaction against his rule, or an attempt to recreate it.

Agence France-Presse - August 21, 2021

Jakarta – The extremist group behind the Bali bombings was planning a fresh attack during Indonesia's independence day celebrations this week, police said Friday, citing militants arrested in a crackdown that netted dozens of suspects.

Jakarta Globe - August 21, 2021

Jakarta – Indonesia recorded 16,744 new Covid-19 cases on Saturday to take the country's total to 3,967,048. While the surge in newly cases has been slowing in recent weeks, the daily death toll continues to top 1,000.

Radio New Zealand - August 21, 2021

A Polish man imprisoned in an Indonesian jail after visiting West Papua as a tourist is doing okay, according to his lawyer.

Jakub Skrzypski is serving a seven-year sentence for treason after being arrested in Papua in 2018 when he was found to have consorted with Papuan pro-independence activists.

UCA News - August 21, 2021

Ryan Dagur – A Society of the Divine Word (SVD) official has denied allegations of "conspiracy" and "false accusations" against Richard Daschbach, who was dismissed from the priesthood for sexual abuse committed in Timor-Leste.

August 20, 2021

Coconuts Jakarta - August 20, 2021

An Indonesian COVID-19 conspiracy theorist attacked a judge in court after he was handed a sentence for his antics, as seen in a video that has circulated widely on social media.

Tabloid JUBI - August 20, 2021

Hengky Yeimo, Jayapura – The Jayapura District Court has started to examine the pretrial motion filed by the legal advisory team of Victor Yeimo, the international spokesperson for the West Papua National Committee (KNPB) and the Papuan People's Petition leader, who is named a suspect for allegedly provoking the anti-racism protests in 2019.

Kompas.com - August 20, 2021

Achmad Nasrudin Yahya, Jakarta – Amnesty International Indonesia is concerned that the public will become even more reluctant to express an opinion after police acted excessively by hunting down and arresting a person who painted a mural critical of the government.

Suara Papua - August 20, 2021

Arnold Belau, Jayapura – The West Papua National Committee (KNPB) emphasized that Victor Yeimo's treatment should be prioritized before conducting a trial at the District Court.

Coconuts Bali - August 20, 2021

Bali is hoping to fill the pandemic tourist void by becoming a quarantine destination for foreign travelers entering Indonesia, which an official said would benefit the local tourism industry.

Asia Pacific Report - August 20, 2021

Ronna Nirmala, Jakarta – A pro-independence activist in Indonesia's Papua province will stand trial next week on charges of treason, says his lawyer.

A day earlier, one protester suffered gunshot wounds when police opened fire to disperse a rally demanding the activist Victor Yeimo's release, activists and a church group said.

Amnesty International News Release - August 20, 2021

Indonesian security forces have used discriminatory excessive force and racially abused protesters peacefully opposing the renewal of the Papuan Special Autonomy Law, new research by Amnesty International has revealed.

Reuters - August 20, 2021

Jakarta – Indonesian police have arrested 53 militants suspected of planning an attack on independence day this week, including alleged members of networks blamed for past attacks like the 2002 Bali bombings, the police said on Friday.

Coconuts Jakarta - August 20, 2021

All adult foreign nationals in Indonesia can now sign up to get their COVID jabs, with the Chamber of Commerce (Kadin) in Jakarta now accepting vaccine registrations for a date set next week.

Tempo - August 20, 2021

Caesar Akbar, Jakarta – The notorious Bank Bali graft case convict, Djoko Tjandra, received a two month remission from the Law and Human Rights Ministry on Indonesia's 76th independence day commemoration.

Jakarta Globe - August 20, 2021

Jakarta – Indonesia has evacuated its 26 nationals including embassy staff from Kabul amid chaotic situation and political uncertainties after the Taliban return to power in Afghanistan following the departure of US military forces from the country, the foreign minister said on Friday.

Mothership - August 20, 2021

Faris Alfiq – The Indonesian Broadcast Commission has given a written warning to South Jakarta-based television channel, Trans TV, over its broadcast of the 2017 movie, Baywatch.

Show deemed to contain 'sensual' depictions of women

New Left Review - August 20, 2021

Rohana Kuddus – Leapfrogging from a provincial furniture factory to become President of Indonesia, Joko Widodo was greeted by a Time magazine cover hailing him as 'A New Hope' for the world.

Coconuts Jakarta - August 20, 2021

Did you know that humans and orangutans share about 96 percent of their DNA? Sadly, the apes' human-like characteristics and intelligence have contributed to their popularity as attractions in zoos and entertainment parks worldwide, which is, in turn, contributing to the species' rapidly declining population.