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Prabowo locked in heated debate with Anies

Jakarta Globe - December 12, 2023

Jakarta – The intricate security situation in Papua emerged as a focal point in the presidential debate on Tuesday evening, leading to a heated exchange between Prabowo Subianto and Anies Baswedan.

In recent years, Papua has been plagued by deadly attacks on civilians carried out by suspected separatist groups, impeding efforts to foster economic progress in the underprivileged region. The situation was compounded by the abduction of a New Zealand pilot by an armed group, with the individual remaining a hostage to date.

Anies attributed the major problems in Papua solely to social injustice, prompting a response from Prabowo.

"Bringing social justice to Papua is undoubtedly necessary, but it's not a simplistic matter, Mr. Anies. We must consider other complex factors such as geopolitics and ideology," remarked Prabowo.

"This is a national concern that demands unified efforts to resolve."

Prabowo underscored the complexity of security management in Papua, citing the challenges posed by the separatist movement and suspected external influences, distinct from those faced in other regions of the country.

He pledged to continue the policies of President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's administration, focusing on infrastructure development, and ensuring economic prosperity and political stability in Papua.

"President Jokowi has devoted considerable attention to Papua, visiting the region more frequently than any of his predecessors. Under his leadership, Papua's economy has shown significant improvement," Prabowo said.

The discourse between Prabowo and Anies extended to various other topics.

Responding to Anies' critique of Indonesia's democracy, Prabowo retorted, "If democracy failed in Indonesia, you wouldn't have become Jakarta's governor."

Prabowo also ridiculed Anies for "blaming the wind" for worsening air pollution in Jakarta instead of working on concrete solutions while he was governor of the capital city.

"If we can blame the wind, we don't need a government," Prabowo said.

Anies looked visibly upset, responding, "It's hard to argue with someone who doesn't understand scientific data."

Source: https://jakartaglobe.id/news/prabowo-locked-in-heated-debate-with-anie