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Foreigners banned from monitoring may 29 election

Antara News - March 20, 1997

Bandung, West Java – Foreigners will not be allowed to monitor the May 29 general election but will be permitted to observe the democratic process, Army chief of staff, Gen R Hartono said Tuesday.

"There will be no problem if they come to Indonesia legally just to observe the general election," Hartono said during the 51st anniversary celebration of the association of army members' wives in Pakutandang village, Ciparay subdistrict here.

Foreigners are welcome to get firsthand information on the upcoming general election for their countries, he said, adding that the army college, Seskoad, and the Indonesian Institute of Science(LIPI) also sought information on other countries' general elections.

He did not specify which countries the Seskoad and the LIPI visited.

"Foreigners are welcome to become good observers but they will not be allowed to monitor, even meddle in the election," he said.

Early this month, Interior Minister Yogie S Memet said he would invite other countries to monitor the general election.

However, he did not name the countries to be invited.

Some 119 million Indonesians are scheduled to go to the polls on May 29.