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Indonesia & East Timor Digest

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January 30, 2021

Asia Pacific Report - January 30, 2021

Pacific Media Watch – The Timorese Episcopal Conference has called on the entire Catholic community in Timor-Leste to accept and respect Pope Francis' decision to expel an American accused of child sexual abuse in the country from the priesthood, reports LUSA news agency.

January 29, 2021

Tempo - January 29, 2021

Antara, Jakarta – Jakarta Environment Department recorded a high number of medical wastes in the capital city during the Covid-19 pandemic, amounting to 12,785 tons in total.

The Guardian - January 29, 2021

Two gay men in Indonesia's Aceh province have been publicly caned 77 times each after they were reported to police by vigilantes who raided their apartment.

Human rights groups have condemned the spectacle, which was watched by dozens of people in the capital Banda Aceh, as brutal and medieval.

Jakarta Globe - January 29, 2021

Sienna Curnow, Jakarta – Communication remains at the heart of effective diplomacy. The inability for formal and informal diplomatic conversations to take place online has provided considerable challenges to international affairs.

The Diplomat - January 29, 2021

Leon Langdon – In December 2020, Benny Wenda told TIME Magazine, "I'm on a mission. I'll finish my mission and then I will rest." Wenda, an activist for Papuan independence, was declared president of the Provisional Government of West Papua in a statement released by the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) on December 1.

Jakarta Globe - January 29, 2021

Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – Indonesia's recent dramatic spike in newly coronavirus cases and deaths is attributable to West Java, which now averages more cases than Jakarta and reports higher daily death toll than East Java.

Tempo - January 29, 2021

Egi Adyatama, Jakarta – Greenpeace Indonesia argued that the South Kalimantan floods in mid-January were caused by deforestation and severe forest degradation, refuting President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's saying that it was due to extreme weather.

Coconuts Jakarta - January 29, 2021

The Jakarta Provincial Government is planning to add five more private hospitals as referral hospitals for COVID-19 patients, as the city recorded its highest daily death toll just yesterday.

January 28, 2021

Agence France-Presse - January 28, 2021

Jakarta – Hundreds of Rohingya are missing from a refugee camp in Aceh and are believed to have been trafficked to neighbouring Malaysia, officials and sources said Thursday.

Just 112 refugees remain at the makeshift camp in Lhokseumawe on Indonesia's northern coast this week, well down from the almost 400 that arrived between June and September last year.

UCA News - January 28, 2021

Konradus Epa, Jakarta – Civil society groups are to launch a class-action lawsuit against Indonesian President Joko Widodo and the South Kalimantan governor following recent floods that left 24 people dead and thousands homeless.

Sydney Morning Herald - January 28, 2021

Karuni Rompies, Jakarta – The rising number of COVID-19 infections and hospitalisations in Indonesia have forced the provincial government in Jakarta to convert vacant and swamp land into cemeteries in anticipation of the need for thousands more burial sites.

Officials are rushing to prepare up to 17,900 new plots on the outskirts of the metropolis of 10 million people.

Jakarta Globe - January 28, 2021

Carlos Roy Fajarta, Jakarta – Tourism and Creative Economy Minister Sandiaga Uno moved his office and staff to Bali on Thursday to get first-hand knowledge of the real problem facing the tourism industry, the hardest hit by the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

Antara News - January 28, 2021

Hendrina DK, Rahmad Nasution, Jayapura, Papua – The Papuan Customary Council has appealed to native Papuan communities in the province to not be provoked by Ambroncius Nababan's alleged racist remarks against noted Papuan human rights defender, Natalius Pigai.

Kumparan - January 28, 2021

At the Taman Sari building in the Acehnese provincial capital of Banda Aceh, MU and TA grimaced with pain as two executioners flogged each of them 77 times. The punishment was handed out for the crime of liwath – same sex relations between two men or gay sex.

Coconuts Jakarta - January 28, 2021

The Indonesian Medical Association (IDI) this week said Indonesia has one of the highest death rates among health workers in the world as it gave a grim update how the health sector continues to struggle amid the pandemic.

Coconuts Jakarta - January 28, 2021

In the year of the COVID-19 pandemic, Indonesia is believed to have regressed in its struggle against corruption, a study has shown.

Sydney Morning Herald - January 28, 2021

Eryk Bagshaw and Karuni Rompies – Beef is off the menu in some of Jakarta's warungs. The iconic Rendang curry is now too expensive to make as sky-rocketing Australian beef prices force food stalls to serve telur balado – boiled eggs with chilli sauce – instead.

January 27, 2021

Tempo - January 27, 2021

Antara, Jakarta – Representatives of the Batak community in Papua have appealed to the National Police to initiate action against Ambroncius Nababan, saying his 'racist' remarks against a noted Papuan human rights defender have marred the Bataknese image.

Australian Financial Review - January 27, 2021

Emma Connors, Jakarta/Sydney – Regional neighbours are being asked to do more to help after Indonesia this week joined 18 other nations that have reported more than one million COVID-19 cases.

Radar Tegal - January 27, 2021

Jakarta – President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has called for stronger global commitments, in this case from the advanced countries, to tackle climate change. This, said Widodo, is because the impacts of climate change were very real for archipelagic nations like Indonesia.

Coconuts Jakarta - January 27, 2021

The National Police's Cyber Crimes Division has arrested a man for hate speech after he allegedly compared a Papuan activist to a gorilla.

Jakarta Globe - January 27, 2021

Jakarta – State-owned aerospace industry Dirgantara Indonesia has delivered the first of nine NC212i military transport aircraft ordered by the Defense Ministry.

The plane is the latest generation of the NC212 family with larger cabin volume and passenger capacity of up to 28 seats, the company said on its website.

Tempo - January 27, 2021

Fajar Pebrianto, Jakarta – President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo confirmed that the derivative regulations of the Job Creation Law or UU Cipta Kerja would be completed soon. Drafts of Government Regulations (PP) and Presidential Regulations (Perpres) were being finalized.

Jakarta Globe - January 27, 2021

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has received the second Sinovac's Covid-19 vaccine shot on Wednesday as the country pick up the pace in rolling out the Covid-19 vaccination throughout the archipelago.

Straits Times - January 27, 2021

Jakarta (Bloomberg/Xinhua) – Indonesian President Joko Widodo received his second dose of the Covid-19 vaccine made by Sinovac Biotech at the Presidential Palace in Jakarta on Wednesday (Jan 27), one day after the country registered more than one million infections.

"Like two weeks ago, it is no pain," Mr Widodo said after the vaccine was injected.

Indonesia at Melbourne - January 27, 2021

Chaula Rininta Anindya – In November 2020, the East Indonesia Mujahideen (MIT) killed four residents of Lembantongoa village in Sigi district, Central Sulawesi. The attack re-sparked debate on the role of the Indonesian military (TNI) in efforts to combat terrorism.

Jakarta Globe - January 27, 2021

Lenny Tristia Tambun, Jakarta – Newly-appointed National Police Chief Listyo Sigit Prabowo on Wednesday promised a deeper role by his institution to enforce health protocols amid the devastating coronavirus outbreak that has infected over a million people and killed more than 28,500 others in the country.

Associated Press - January 27, 2021

Slamet Riyadi, Yogyakarta – Indonesia's most active volcano has erupted with a river of lava and searing gas clouds flowing 1600 metres down its slopes.

It was Mount Merapi's biggest lava flow since authorities raised its danger level in November, said Hanik Humaida, the head of Yogyakarta's Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation Centre.

The Guardian - January 27, 2021

Gemma Holliani Cahya, Jakarta – When American tourist Kristen Antoinette Gray began writing about her stay in Bali on Twitter, she apparently had little idea of the controversy she would cause.

Kompas.com - January 27, 2021

Ihsanuddin, Jakarta – Jakarta Indonesian Doctor's Association (IDI) Chairperson Slamet Budiarto has questioned a statement by President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo who said that the government has succeeded in bringing the coronavirus pandemic under control.

Budiarto said he was confused about what parameters Widodo was using in making such as statement.

Asia Pacific Report - January 27, 2021

Pacific Media Watch – More leading Indonesian figures have made racial slurs against Natalius Pigai, former chair of the National Human Rights Commission (Komnas HAM) – and all West Papuans, says United Liberation Movement of West Papua (ULMWP) interim president Benny Wenda.

Jakarta Globe - January 27, 2021

Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – Indonesia recorded 387 coronavirus-related deaths on Wednesday to mark the highest daily death toll since the outbreak started.

January has become the deadliest month in the outbreak with 6,717 deaths in the 27-day period. The previous record for the highest monthly death toll was 5,193 deaths reported in December.

Tirto.id - January 27, 2021

Adi Briantika – A group of Papuan students in front of the House of Representatives (DPR) building in Jakarta, who were planning to hold a protest action opposing the extension of Papuan Special Autonomy (Otsus), were arrested and taken to the Metro Jaya regional police headquarters on Wednesday January 27.

January 26, 2021

Coconuts Jakarta - January 26, 2021

Warding off mosquitoes was touted as one of the reasons for female Muslim students in Padang, West Sumatra to continue wearing the hijab at school amid ongoing outrage about the discriminatory policy in the region.

Jakarta Globe - January 26, 2021

Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – Indonesia surpassed 1 million coronavirus cases on Tuesday amid a dramatic surge in newly cases that has started since early this month, the country's worst period after 331 days into the pandemic.

The country has recorded 13,094 cases in the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of cases to 1,012,350, government figures show.

Mongabay - January 26, 2021

Indra Nugraha – Veteran Indonesian agrarian reform activist Gunawan Wiradi, a lifelong champion of the rights of farmers and rural communities, has died at the age of 88.

Gunawan co-founded the Consortium for Agrarian Reform (KPA), which documents and records conflicts and injustices in underreported regions of Indonesia.

Tempo - January 26, 2021

Lani Diana, Jakarta – Jakarta Provincial Government recorded there are 54 community units (RW) set as Covid-19 red zone as per January 21. The red zone status shows that an area is at high risk of coronavirus transmission.

Reuters - January 26, 2021

Tabita Diela, Jakarta – Indonesia has raised its budget for the National Economic Recovery program to Rp 553.09 trillion (US$39.4 billion), increasing fiscal support for a country struggling to contain its coronvirus outbreak, a minister said on Tuesday.

Tabloid JUBI - January 26, 2021

Jayapura, Jubi – A number of Catholics in Papua, calling themselves "One Voice of Catholic Laypeople in Papua", declared a vote of no confidence in all the bishops in Papua and in the Bishop Council of Indonesia (KWI).

UCA News - January 26, 2021

Konradus Epa, Jakarta – More than 160 indigenous people have been killed in Indonesia due to conflicts between local people and mining companies during President Joko Widodo's term in office, according to an anti-mining group's report.

The Guardian - January 26, 2021

Rebecca Ratcliffe South-east Asia correspondent and Gemma Holliani Cahya in Jakarta – Health experts in Indonesia have warned that hospitals in some areas are on the brink of collapse as the nation passed one million confirmed cases of coronavirus.

Coconuts Jakarta - January 26, 2021

The Jakarta Metro Police have arrested seven people in connection to a medical certificate forgery ring, two of whom were said to be employees of labs for PCR testing.

Kompas.com - January 26, 2021

Nicholas Ryan Aditya, Jakarta – The Indonesian Legal Aid Foundation (YLBHI) recorded 351 cases of civil rights violations across the country in 2020. YLBHI organisational development division head Febionesta said that the cases were dominated by violations against freedom of expression and the right to convey an opinion in public.

Tempo - January 26, 2021

Mahfuzulloh Al Murtadho, Jakarta – High-intensity rainfall showering Bogor since 15:30 local time on Monday, Jan. 25 caused the Cisadane River to overflow which led to landslides in plantations and fields belonging to residents of Ciadeg Village, Cigombong.

East Asia Forum - January 26, 2021

Alexander R Arifianto, RSIS – On 22 December 2020, Indonesian President Joko Widodo reshuffled his cabinet to replace six ministers. One of the more important changes was for the Ministry of Religious Affairs.

Vice - January 26, 2021

Heather Chen and Randy Mulyanto – Swarms of people dressed for a nightclub gather at the edges of an abandoned skating rink to watch and cheer as skateboarders perform stunts against a backdrop of flashing disco lights.

Coconuts Jakarta - January 26, 2021

Inter-city train trips on the island of Java are about to get significantly cheaper with the imminent adoption of a locally developed COVID-19 breathalyzer to screen passengers for the disease.

Jakarta Globe - January 26, 2021

Yudha Baskoro, Jakarta – Indonesia has surpassed one million coronavirus cases on Tuesday.

According to the National Covid-19 Task Force, the country has added another 13,094 Covid-19 cases in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number to 1,012,350. Indonesia's coronavirus death toll now stands at 28,468 after 336 new Covid-related deaths were recorded.

Coconuts Jakarta - January 26, 2021

Indonesia today hit an undesired milestone in its struggle against COVID-19, recording over 1 million cases – the first country in Southeast Asia to do so – since the pandemic arrived on its shores in March.

Fulcrum - January 26, 2021

Max Lane – The opposition's weakness means that the Indonesian president's recent problems carry few political costs – for the moment.