Hengky Yeimo, Nabire – Visual artist from West Papua, Ellya Alexander Tebay, has taken inspiration from Papuan local food, sweet potatoes or "ubi" in Indonesian, to express his lament for the declining existence of the food in the realm of native Papuans' live.
Indonesia & East Timor Digest
February 19, 2021
Sheany – Bali has seen more and more reports of sea turtles stranded on its shores this year, with a local NGO putting the number at almost two dozen since late January.
Hendartyo Hanggi, Jakarta – Indonesian National Police Chief General Listyo Sigit said that his institution faces a situation that is unwinnable in regards to the Information and Electronics Transaction Law (ITE Law) – a law which critics argue is often abused and provisions 'stretched' for multiple interpretations – and the authorities are often seen to side with people who arguabl
Primus Dorimulu, Maria Fatima Bona, Jakarta – Indonesian health authorities have started to administer coronavirus vaccine produced by state-run pharmaceutical company Bio Farma since the second round of mass vaccination began on Wednesday.
Della Syahni and Sapariah Saturi, Jakarta – A coal-slurry spill into a river in Indonesian Borneo has killed hundreds of fish and forced authorities to shut off water lines to households.
Michael Leach – After a year of upheaval, Timor-Leste politics entered 2021 in an interesting place. Alliances between the major parties have been reconfigured and a rising generation of small parties is generating new pressures. Still unresolved, meanwhile, is the future management of the maritime oilfields, vital to the nation's economic future.
Hengky Yeimo, Nabire – The spokesperson of West Papua National Committee (KNPB) in Timika area, Emanuel Dogopia, was taken from his parents' house in Timika, the center of Mimika regency in Papua, by the police.
Antonia Timmerman, Jakarta – The stench is overpowering, and it only gets worse as you approach the biggest landfill site in Southeast Asia.
Tempo.Co, Rini Kustiani, Jakarta – Tourists visiting Papua must pay extra attention to look out for pigs – which can be spotted roaming village streets. The local custom suggests that this animal is highly valued by the society in the province.
Yogyakarta – Mount Merapi, one of the world's most active volcanoes, erupted on Friday, belching out fiery red lava.
The volcano, close to Yogyakarta, had already spewed lava almost two dozen times over the two last days and caused hundreds of minor volcanic quakes, according to a report by Indonesia's geological agency.
Konradus Epa, Jakarta – Environmentalists in Indonesia have called on the government to try and settle more than 1,000 disputes triggered by the presence of palm oil plantations, including agrarian ones between indigenous people and palm oil companies across the country.
They said the situation is threatening to spiral out of control
Jakarta – Exposit Strategy Political Analyst Arif Susanto has warned that the discourse on revisions to the Information and Electronic Transaction (ITE) Law which have been proposed recently are nothing more than means to improve the government's image.
Jakarta – September 2019, and Veronica Koman was enjoying her final days in Australia. Her studies at the Australian National University were almost over and all that was left was to wait for graduation day.
One afternoon, Koman's mobile phone rang. There was an SMS message from a friend in Indonesia. Her colleague informed her that the police had declared Koman a suspect.
Jakarta – The transfer of the management of the Rokan Block from Chevron to Pertamina is delayed by a number of problems. This is the result of the government's politicizing of economic decisions.
Herman, Triyan Pangastuti, Jakarta – Bank Indonesia, or BI, the country's central bank, has cut its benchmark interest rate by 25 basis points to a record low of 3.5 percent and drop the down payment requirement for new vehicle loans and mortgages in the latest attempt to spur growth in Southeast Asia's largest economy.
Katharina R. Lestari, Jakarta – Prosecutors in Indonesia have sought a 10-year jail term for a man accused of attempting to kill a 44-year-old Saudi-born Muslim cleric last year.
Alpin Andrian, 24, allegedly stabbed Syekh Ali Jaber in the shoulder while he was delivering a sermon on Sept. 13 last year at a mosque in Bandar Lampung, the largest city in Lampung province.
February 18, 2021
Shotaro Tani, Jakarta – Indonesia's central bank lowered its benchmark interest rate for the first time in three months and lowered its growth outlook for this year, as the country continues to struggle with the coronavirus pandemic.
Antara, Jakarta – The West Kalimantan Police announced the arrest of three suspected terrorists that were captured in an operation led by the antiterrorist group Densus 88. Police say that the three suspects that are all in their twenties are affiliated with the terrorist cell Jamaah Ansharut Daulah (JAD).
Maria Fatima Bona, Jakarta – Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin has suspected the government's Covid-19 test reporting application's complicated user interface kept laboratories from reporting the complete test data on time, distorting key indicators for assessing the pandemic situation in Indonesia.
Ryan Dagur, Jakarta – A senior Indonesian Church official has welcomed a call by President Joko Widodo for the revision of several articles in a law regulating electronic information and transactions that activists claim are aimed at curbing civil liberties and ensnaring government critics.
Ryan Dagur – Activists stage protest against Archbishop of Merauke signing deal with palm oil firm "at expense of environment"
Together with several colleagues, Papuan Catholic activist Melvin Waine stood in front of Good Shepherd Parish Church in Abepura, Papua province, on Jan. 31.
Jakarta – National Human Rights Commission (Komnas HAM) Commissioner Choirul Anam says that the move by Yogyakarta (DIY) Governor Sri Sultan Hamengku Buwono X to restrict demonstrations at several key locations in the Central Java city is a setback for democracy.
Police in Probolinggo, East Java are investigating the alleged abuse of a domestic worker, who escaped alleged horrible live-in conditions with her employers recently.
Budiarti Utami Putri, Koran Tempo, Jakarta – Presidential Chief of Staff spokesperson Juri Ardiantoro said that the government has given the green light for the House of Representatives (DPR) to propose a revision for the Information and Electronic Transactions Law (ITE Law) as he said the law is a product of the government and DPR.
"It's not too late to return to God. God has not left you. Indonesia is a Muslim country, and we reject all sins. Let us help you drive Satan out from inside of you and you can become normal again," reads a message sent through an Instagram account under the name Mohammad Susantu (@mohammadsusantu).
Misinformation and hoaxes surrounding the COVID-19 vaccine have sparked fear among some people in Indonesia, so much so that residents of a hamlet in East Nusa Tenggara (NTT) reportedly went into the woods to hide.
Hans Nicholas Jong, Jakarta – Police in Indonesia are considering opening an investigation into allegations that a recent deadly flood in Borneo may have been exacerbated by environmental degradation linked to coal mining activity.
Antara, Jakarta – The latest data from Statistics Indonesia (BPS) related to people's main sources of income classifies the majority of households facing poverty in 2020 are the ones relying on agriculture as their main source of income.
Anwar Siswadi, Jakarta – The disposable face mask waste is a new problem in the society amidst the Covid-19 pandemic, especially in the household level. The team of researchers from the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) is figuring out the solution to the matter by recycling disposable masks into plastic pellets.
February 17, 2021
Budiarti Utami Putri, Jakarta – The Indonesian government has officially passed 49 implementing regulations from the Job Creation Law, which is widely known as the UU Cipta Kerja, on Tuesday, February 16. The regulations consist of 45 government regulations and four presidential regulations.
Jakarta – Amnesty International Indonesia is calling on President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo to release all those criminalised under the Information and Electronic Transaction (ITE) Law as a concrete step following his statement that he wants to revise the law.
Katharina R. Lestari, Jakarta – A province on Indonesia's Sumatra island has declared an eight-month emergency to try and prevent peat fires that blanket the region and beyond with harmful haze each year.
Riau province governor Syamsuar declared the emergency on Feb. 15 following a virtual meeting of local government officials in the provincial capital Pekanbaru.
By Aashna Jamal – Timor-Leste is one of the countries with the lowest number of COVID-19 cases, largely because the government shut down borders in early 2020 knowing that the fragile health system would not be able to cope with a pandemic. The nation has been in an extended state of emergency since March 28, 2020, a period that was broken only by a brief hiatus in July and August.
Bisnis, Jakarta – A viral video that became one of Twitter's trending list entries on February 16 showing a lengthy line of tow trucks carrying new cars that were purchased by village residents of Sumurgeneng located in East Java's Tuban District.
Markus Junianto Sihaloho, Maria Fatima Bona, Jakarta – Indonesia on Wednesday launched the second round of mass vaccination against coronavirus targeting public service workers and elderly citizens, including Vice President Ma'ruf Amin who is 77.
Here's a little heads up for those of you who are new to or are still trying to get into the hot new audio-based social app Clubhouse in Indonesia: there's a possibility that the country's Information and Communications Ministry (Kominfo) may block it entirely in the next few months.
Victor Mambor, Jayapura, Jubi – Papuan Humanity Team on Case of Violence against Religious Figures in Intan Jaya regency, or Humanity Team, has completed the documentation of alleged extrajudicial killings against Protestant pastor Yeremia Zanambani on Sept. 19, 2020. This report documents facts surrounding the killing of Pastor Yeremia.
Andita Rahma, Jakarta – In response to President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's statement on the idea of revising the Law on Information and Electronic Transactions or ITE Law, the human rights group Lokataru Foundation opined that such revision could not necessarily restore democracy.
Natasha Christy Wahyuni & Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – The US Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken has vowed to bolster the longstanding bilateral ties with Indonesia in a phone call with Foreign Affairs Minister Retno Marsudi, according to the US state department spokesperson Ned Price.
Tsarina Maharani, Jakarta – National Commission on Violence Against Women (Komnas Perempuan) Deputy Chairperson Mariana Amiruddin says implementing the principle of restorative justice in rape cases does not mean marrying off the victim to the rapist.
Wahyudi Soeriaatmadja, Jakarta – The second phase of Indonesia's vaccination programme kicked off on Wednesday (Feb 17) at South-east Asia's biggest textile market in Tanah Abang, with 10,000 vendors having signed up to receive their first shot.
The market in central Jakarta was abuzz with excitement as 40 vaccinators made preparations for the inoculation.
Ian Lloyd Neubauer – Xanana Gusmao, independence hero and East Timor's former president, has drawn rare condemnation after being accused of whitewashing the crimes of a disgraced American priest who is due to stand trial next week in a landmark child-sex abuse case in the Catholic-majority Southeast Asian nation.
February 16, 2021
Linda Yulisman, Jakarta – Indonesian rescuers have taken extra measures to protect themselves from being infected with Covid-19, as they battle floods in Jakarta and the surrounding regions.
Imam Budilaksono/Suharto, Jakarta – A lawmaker urged Indonesia's government to improve its strategy to handle armed criminal groups in Papua Province following the death of a military soldier in a gunfight with rebels in Intan Jaya on Feb 15.
The Food and Drugs Monitoring Agency (BPOM) has issued an emergency use authorization (EUA) for a COVID-19 vaccine processed in Indonesia, as the country gears up to enter the second phase of its mass vaccination program.
Stuart Rees – West Papuans are Indigenous people, easily ignored, their natural resources exploited, their homes and cultures destroyed, hundreds tortured, hundreds of thousands killed. Our media reports endlessly about genocide in remote Xinjiang but not about genocide in neighbouring West Papua. Why?
Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – Indonesia's Drug and Food Supervisory Agency, or BPOM, approved on Tuesday the emergency use of a vaccine against coronavirus manufactured by state-run pharmaceutical company Bio Farma under license from China's Sinovac Biotech.
Achmad Nasrudin Yahya, Jakarta – Indonesian military (TNI) Commander Marshal Hadi Tjahjanto has revealed that Papuan separatists are using social media (medsos) as a propaganda tool.
Tjahjanto explained that there are at least three elements exploiting social media as a propaganda tool, namely elements from political, clandestine and armed fronts.
Hans Nicholas Jong, Jakarta – At least 168 people, mainly children, have died after falling into abandoned mining pits across Indonesia over the past seven years, according to a new report.
Triyan Pangastuti, Muhammad Ghafur Fadillah, Novy Lumanauw, Jakarta – The government has increased the Covid-19 and national economic recovery (PC-PEN) fund by 19 percent and provided tax cuts for new car purchases to encourage consumers to spend, following an underwhelming trade data pointed to lingering weakness in domestic demand.