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Indonesia & East Timor Digest

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August 26, 2019

News ›› East Timor ›› Infrastructure & Development
Channel News Asia - August 26, 2019

Laurentina Barreto Soares, Melbourne – This month, Timor-Leste is in a festive mood, celebrating the 20th anniversary of its independence referendum.

On Aug 30, 1999, the people of Timor-Leste cast their ballots in a United Nations – administered popular consultation to determine the fate of the country, with 78.5 per cent voting to separate from Indonesia.

August 25, 2019

News ›› Indonesia ›› Environment & Natural Disasters
Tempo - August 25, 2019

Jakarta (Antara) – The Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysics (BMKG) Station in Pekanbaru, Riau Province, confirmed the presence of 584 hotspots on Sumatra Island suggestive of forest fires on Saturday morning.

News ›› East Timor ›› 1999 Referendum & Pro-Integration Militia
SBS News - August 25, 2019

Hannah Sinclair – Two decades on from the historic referendum in Southeast Asia – which saw at least 1,400 people lose their lives and Australia forced to step in – SBS News meets an activist, a diplomat and a journalist who witnessed the crisis unfold.

The activist: Abel Guterres was in danger, fighting for independence

News ›› Indonesia ›› Environment & Natural Disasters
Tempo - August 25, 2019

Jakarta (Antara) – Visibility in Riau's capital of Pekanbaru was curtailed to 1.5 kilometers (km) on Saturday at 8 a.m. local time owing to smog emanating from forest fires in Pelalawan District, in particular.

News ›› Indonesia ›› Hard-Line Militia & Vigilante Groups
Jakarta Post - August 25, 2019

Jakarta – Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan called on the Islam Defenders Front (FPI) to "keep defending religion" during an opening speech he delivered at the mass organization's 21st anniversary celebration on Saturday morning.

FPI spokesman Munarman said the anniversary celebration went off without a hitch.

News ›› West Papua ›› Freedom of Information & The Press
Organization for World Peace - August 25, 2019

Maddy Eagan – Following days of unrest, the Indonesian government blocked internet access on August 22nd in the provinces of Papua and West Papua (known collectively as West Papua).

News ›› West Papua ›› Ethnic and Racial Discrimination
Jakarta Post - August 25, 2019

Ghina Ghaliya and Fadli, Jakarta and Batam – Fueled by a viral video that appeared to show alleged security personnel using the derogatory slur "monkey" against Papuan students in Surabaya, East Java, the longstanding racial prejudice against residents of Papua and West Papua boiled over during recent tensions in the two least developed provinces in the country.

News ›› Indonesia ›› Jakarta & Urban Life
Jakarta Post - August 25, 2019

N. Adri, East Kalimantan – East Kalimantan Governor Isran Noor vowed to put land speculators under control should the President pick the province as the new capital city, he said on Friday.

News ›› Indonesia ›› Foreign Affairs & Trade
Tempo - August 25, 2019

Jakarta (Antara) – Member of the House of Representatives (DPR) Commission V Bambang Haryo Soekartono has urged the government to reduce the import of both consumer goods and raw materials for the national industry as part of efforts to curb the country's trade deficit.

News ›› Indonesia ›› Hard-Line Militia & Vigilante Groups
Jakarta Post - August 25, 2019

Jakarta – Jafar Umar Thalib, former leader of the now-defunct Laskar Jihad paramilitary group, died of a heart attack at the age of 58 on Sunday.

News ›› Indonesia ›› Environment & Natural Disasters
Mongabay - August 25, 2019

Hans Nicholas Jong, Jakarta – More than 80 percent of oil palm plantations in Indonesia, the world's biggest producer of the crop, are operating in violation of numerous regulations, a government audit has found.

August 24, 2019

Statements ›› West Papua ›› Freedom of Information & The Press
Reporters Without Borders Press Release - August 24, 2019

Paris (Reporters Without Borders/Pacific Media Watch) – Reporters Without Borders (RSF) has called for an immediate end to a two-day-old internet blackout in West Papua, where Indonesian security forces have been clashing with Papuan pro-independence demonstrators.

The blackout violates the freedom to inform and makes it hard for journalists to work, RSF said.

News ›› West Papua ›› Riots & Attacks on Authority
Jakarta Globe - August 24, 2019

Farouk Arnaz & Telly Nathalia, Jakarta – Police have charged 10 people with damaging public facilities in Timika in Papua and Manokwari in West Papua during violent demonstrations on Monday triggered by acts of racism against Papuan students in Semarang, Malang and Surabaya last weekend.

News ›› West Papua ›› Melanesian & Pacific Solidarity
PNG Facts - August 24, 2019

Papua New Guinea's Port Moresby Governor Powes Parkop has strongly called on the President of the Republic of Indonesia Joko Widodo not to take Papuans for granted.

News ›› West Papua ›› Freedom of Information & The Press
Jakarta Post - August 24, 2019

Gemma Holliani Cahya and Ardila Syakriah, Jakarta – Papua is widely known for its poor telephone and internet network, and coupled with challenging geographical terrain, it is a difficult region for gathering and verifying information.

News ›› West Papua ›› Freedom of Information & The Press
Jakarta Post - August 24, 2019

Ardila Syakriah, Jakarta – West Papua journalist Victor Mambor claims he has faced intimidation and harassment for reporting on the internet blackout sanctioned by the government amid escalating protests in Papua and West Papua.

News ›› West Papua ›› Ethnic and Racial Discrimination
Radio New Zealand - August 24, 2019

The Papuan People Council has advised all West Papuan students studying in other parts of Indonesia to return home.

Harassment of Papuan students in Javanese cities on and Indonesian's independence day anniversary last week has sparked widespread protests in Papua.

News ›› West Papua ›› Analysis & Opinion
Asia Pacific Report - August 24, 2019

David Robie – Indonesia's harsh policies towards West Papua ought to be scrapped. Whatever happened to the brief window of enlightenment ushered in by President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo in 2015 with promises of a more "open door" policy towards foreign journalists and human rights groups?

News ›› West Papua ›› Ethnic and Racial Discrimination
Tabloid JUBI - August 24, 2019

Kristianto Galuwo, Papua – Thousands of students from the Faculty of Social and Political Science of the University of Cenderawasih closed the university's gate, the only access to its Waena Campus in Perumnas 3, Heram Sub-district of Jayapura Municipality.

News ›› Indonesia ›› Hard-Line Militia & Vigilante Groups
CNN Indonesia - August 24, 2019

Jakarta – Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan took part in dawn prayers during a commemoration of Indonesian independence and the 21st anniversary of the Islamic Defenders Front (FPI) at the Rawa Badak Stadium in Koja, North Jakarta, on Saturday August 24.

News ›› Indonesia ›› Terrorism & Religious Extremism
Jakarta Post - August 24, 2019

Asip Hasani, Blitar – The National Police's Densus 88 counterterrorism squad apprehended three terrorist suspects at three different locations in Blitar regency, East Java, on Friday.

Blitar Police chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Adewira Negara Siregar confirmed the arrests. "Densus 88 arrested three suspected terrorists," he said.

News ›› West Papua ›› Riots & Attacks on Authority
Al Jazeera - August 24, 2019

Febriana Firdaus, Jakarta, Indonesia – Several demonstrators have been injured and dozens detained as Indonesian authorities crack down on separatist protests in the West Papua region, according to witnesses, but the police strongly deny anyone was wounded.

News ›› East Timor ›› Foreign Affairs & Trade
South China Morning Post - August 24, 2019

Randy Mulyanto and Meaghan Tobin – Sceptics of East Timor's relations with China should know it is not a "new, fragile country" that can be easily swayed by others, its foreign minister said, citing how the nation handled its border dispute with larger neighbour Australia.

News ›› West Papua ›› Human Rights & Justice
Tempo - August 24, 2019

Ahmad Faiz Ibnu Sani, Jakarta – Papuan students across the country have allegedly experienced 33 human rights violations since 2018, according to Director of Legal Aid Institute (LBH) Jakarta chapter Arif Maulana.

News ›› Indonesia ›› Sexual & Domestic Violence
Detik News - August 24, 2019

Jakarta – The Islamic Defenders Front (FPI) emphatically opposes the Draft Law on the Elimination of Sexual Violence believing that it contains Western feminist ideas which are anti-religion and has the potential to legalise Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) activities.

News ›› Indonesia ›› Transport & Communication
Jakarta Globe - August 24, 2019

Telly Nathalia, Jakarta – Passenger ship KM Santika Nusantara caught fire in waters off Masalembu Islands en route from Surabaya in East Java to Balikpapan in East Kalimantan on Thursday night, killing three people. National Search and Rescue Agency, or Basarnas, said on Saturday 293 survivors have so far been rescued from the ship.

News ›› West Papua ›› Internet & Social Media
Straits Times - August 24, 2019

Jakarta (Bloomberg) – Indonesia's government extended the suspension of mobile-data services in Papua and West Papua provinces after riots broke out in the region, the country's cabinet secretariat said, citing the Communications and Information Ministry.

August 23, 2019

News ›› West Papua ›› Internet & Social Media
Reuters - August 23, 2019

Jakarta – Rights group and journalists slammed the Indonesian government's move to block internet access in its easternmost region of Papua on Friday, saying it made reporting events there difficult after violent protests during which buildings were torched.

News ›› West Papua ›› Human Rights & Justice
Nikkei Asian Review - August 23, 2019

Erwida Maulia, Jakarta – Viral videos of soldiers and security officers racially abusing Papuan students have triggered a fresh wave of violence and revived calls for independence in Indonesia's restive east.

News ›› West Papua ›› Ethnic and Racial Discrimination
Radio New Zealand - August 23, 2019

The Pacific Conference of Churches (PCC) has condemned what it calls institutional racism against West Papuans in Indonesia.

It has spoken out amid widespread protests in Papua region after an incident in Surabaya last week when Papuan students were harassed by a mob and later arrested.

News ›› Indonesia ›› Corruption & Abuse of Power
Jakarta Post - August 23, 2019

Jakarta – The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) announced on Friday the names of 20 candidates for leadership posts who have passed the profile assessment phase.

Comprising 17 men and three women, the candidates are as follows:

News ›› West Papua ›› Human Rights & Justice
Coconuts Bali - August 23, 2019

Along with thousands of Indonesians who have taken part in protests throughout the country this week condemning mistreatment and racial abuse against Papuan citizens, dozens of college students in Bali took to the streets of Renon in Denpasar yesterday to demand justice and an end to discrimination against Papuans.

News ›› West Papua ›› Freedom of Information & The Press
Tempo - August 23, 2019

Caesar Akbar, Jakarta – The Legal Aid Institute for the Press (LBH Pers) urges Communication and Informatics Ministry (Kominfo) to immediately lift the internet blocking policy as it has been applied since Wednesday night, August 21, in Papua and West Papua Province.

News ›› Indonesia ›› Labour & Migrant Workers
CNN Indonesia - August 23, 2019

Jakarta – Protesters from the United People's Struggle (KPR) say that the planned revisions to Law Number 13/2003 on Labour will further burden workers in Indonesia because it will introduce greater flexibility to employment status and wages.

News ›› West Papua ›› Ethnic and Racial Discrimination
Tempo - August 23, 2019

Fikri Arigi, Jakarta – Brawijaya Military Command (Kodam) V is examining its six personnel who are suspected to have thrown racist remarks against Papuan students in Surabaya, East Java, on Saturday, August 17.

Statements ›› West Papua ›› Freedom of Information & The Press
International Federation of Journalists Statement - August 23, 2019

Following riots and demonstrations in Papua and West Papua, the internet has been blocked in Indonesia's eastern most provinces since Wednesday, August 21.

News ›› Indonesia ›› Women's Rights & Gender
Daily Mail - August 23, 2019

Eliza Mcphee – A shocking social media advertisement has promoted female genital mutilation for just AU$10 in Indonesia.

The ad was shared to Facebook by community organisation Wahdah Islamiyah, who are based in the Jeneponto district, with the description urging viewers to enter their daughters 'in the name of God'.

News ›› West Papua ›› Riots & Attacks on Authority
The Guardian - August 23, 2019

Helen Davidson, and Kate Lamb in Jakarta – Indonesia's president, Joko Widodo, has said West Papua "has returned to normal" after clashes with police, a claim dismissed by independence protesters who said mass rallies were likely to continue.

News ›› West Papua ›› OPM & Armed Resistance
Jakarta Globe - August 23, 2019

Antara & Telly Nathalia, Jakarta – Police exchanged fire with a group of gunmen at the Jibama market in Wamena in Papua's Jayawijaya district on Friday morning. One of the gunmen was killed during the skirmish.

The local police officers were patrolling the market when the gunmen opened fire at them.

News ›› West Papua ›› Riots & Attacks on Authority
Channel News Asia - August 23, 2019

Kiki Siregar, Jakarta – Indonesia's resource-rich Papua region has seen a string of riots in several of its big cities this week, the biggest such outbreaks of violence in the country in years.

News ›› West Papua ›› Freedom of Information & The Press
Asia Pacific Report - August 23, 2019

Michael Andrew – The Indonesian media is contributing to resentment and racism toward Papuans, according to a human rights researcher and former journalist.

Andreas Harsono of Human Rights Watch Jakarta told Pacific Media Watch many Indonesian journalists either view Papuans as enemy "separatists" or deviants and their reporting tends to convey these stereotypes.

News ›› Indonesia ›› Refugees & Asylum Seekers
Tempo - August 23, 2019

Muh Halwi, Jakarta – Police have moved and secured a number of asylum seekers from Sudan after a conflict raised during snacks distribution on Thursday, August 22. The Sudanese people forcibly occupied the street in front of the ex-Kodim building, a temporary place set for the refugees.

News ›› West Papua ›› Ethnic and Racial Discrimination
Tempo - August 23, 2019

Iqbal Tawakal Lazuardi, Jakarta – West Java Police spokesman Sr. Comr. Trunoyudo announced that the policeman who gave liquor to a group of Papua university students in Bandung was under the scrutiny of the police's internal affairs division (Propam).

The policeman in question, a commissioner, has undergone extensive investigation since Thursday night, August 22.

News ›› West Papua ›› Ethnic and Racial Discrimination
BBC News - August 23, 2019

A catalogue of racist taunts aimed at a group of students have sparked violent protests in Indonesia's eastern region of Papua.

Statements ›› West Papua ›› Human Rights & Justice
Australian West Papua Association (Sydney) - August 23, 2019

Senator the Hon Marise Payne
Minister for Foreign Affairs
PO Box 6100
Senate, Parliament House
Canberra ACT 2600

23 August 2019

Dear Foreign Minister,

I am writing to you on behalf of the Australia West Papua Association in Sydney concerning the increasing tension in West Papua.

News ›› Indonesia ›› Political Parties & Elections
The Diplomat - August 23, 2019

Giora Eliraz – Amid of the hectic atmosphere of Indonesian politics preceding the elections of April 2019, eyes were almost exclusively focused on the Jokowi-Prabowo presidential race.

News ›› West Papua ›› OPM & Armed Resistance
Reuters - August 23, 2019

Jakarta – Indonesian police shot dead a member of a Papuan separatist group on Friday during an exchange of fire, a spokesman said, after violent demonstrations this week in other places in the eastern region over perceived ethnic discrimination.

News ›› Indonesia ›› Terrorism & Religious Extremism
Jakarta Globe - August 23, 2019

Farouk Arnaz & Telly Nathalia, Jakarta – The police's anti-terror unit Detachment 88 arrested two members of the Islamic State-affiliated militant group Jamaah Ansharut Daulah, or JAD, including the leader of its Lamongan branch, at two separate locations in East Java on Thursday.

News ›› West Papua ›› Freedom of Information & The Press
The Conversation - August 23, 2019

Ika Karlina Idris – The Indonesian government has blocked internet access as they deployed security forces to its easternmost provinces following days of violent protests there. Papuans took to the streets following arrests and racist treatments of Papuan students over the weekend in East Java.

News ›› West Papua ›› Freedom of Information & The Press
Tempo - August 23, 2019

Caesar Akbar, Jakarta – Chairman of the Alliance of Independent Journalists (AJI) Indonesia, Abdul Manan, condemned the internet block applied in Papua and West Papua by the government starting on Wednesday, August 21, 2019. He claimed that the policy disturbed Papuan citizens from receiving and delivering information.