Indonesia

Indonesia

Stranded Rohingya pulled to shore by sympathetic Indonesians

Nearly 100 Rohingya asylum seekers stranded off the coast of Indonesia were pulled to shore on Thursday by locals angered at the refusal of authorities to give them shelter over coronavirus fears.Around 94 people from the persecuted Myanmar minority - including 30 children - were reportedly plucked from a wooden boat by fishermen this week before being intercepted by maritime officials from Sumatra island who pulled them closer to shore.But due to the fear of coronavirus, officials in Lhokseumawe city on Sumatra's northern coast refused to allow the group to land.Angry locals took matters into their own hands by jumping into boats which they used to pull the asylum seekers to shore."It's purely for humanitarian reasons," said fisherman Aples Kuari. "We were sad seeing kids and pregnant wom...
Why Indonesia is reaffirming its position on the South China Sea and turning down China’s offer for bilateral talks
Indonesia

Why Indonesia is reaffirming its position on the South China Sea and turning down China’s offer for bilateral talks

Amid recent activities in the South China Sea, the Indonesian government has reiterated its position on the rule of international law addressed to the United Nations, while declining China's offer to hold bilateral talks on overlapping claims.In a diplomatic note dated May 26, Indonesia reiterated that it is not a party to the territorial dispute in the South China Sea. “The nine-dash line map which China uses as a basis for its claims in the waters lacks an international legal basis,” it added.Beijing responded by sending a diplomatic note pointing out that there is no territorial dispute between China and Indonesia in the South China Sea.The note on June 2 said: “However, China and Indonesia have overlapping claims on maritime rights and interests in some parts of the South China Sea. Ch
Philippine protesters rally over controversial anti-terror bill
Indonesia

Philippine protesters rally over controversial anti-terror bill

Braving the fear of Coronavirus, thousands of protesters rallied in the capital of the Philippines, Manila on Friday against anti-terrorism legislation that critics fear would give Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte sweeping powers to stifle dissent.The Bill, which has been approved by Congress and is expected to be signed into law by Duterte, would create a council of presidential appointees that could order warrantless arrests of people it deems are terrorists.It also allows for weeks of detention without charge. Activists fear the legislation could open the door to a crackdown on Duterte's opponents."They (authorities) shouldn't fool us that this terror Bill is for terrorists. It's for all of us," said Neri Colmenares, an activist and lawyer.“Groups such as the kidnap-for-ransom gang
Philippine protesters rally over controversial anti-terror bill
Indonesia

Philippine protesters rally over controversial anti-terror bill

Braving the fear of Coronavirus, thousands of protesters rallied in the capital of the Philippines, Manila on Friday against anti-terrorism legislation that critics fear would give Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte sweeping powers to stifle dissent.The Bill, which has been approved by Congress and is expected to be signed into law by Duterte, would create a council of presidential appointees that could order warrantless arrests of people it deems are terrorists.It also allows for weeks of detention without charge. Activists fear the legislation could open the door to a crackdown on Duterte's opponents."They (authorities) shouldn't fool us that this terror Bill is for terrorists. It's for all of us," said Neri Colmenares, an activist and lawyer.“Groups such as the kidnap-for-ransom gang
Thailand: Protesters demand investigation of exiled activists’ kidnapping
Indonesia

Thailand: Protesters demand investigation of exiled activists’ kidnapping

In Thailand’s capital Bangkok, protesters in held a small rally outside the Prime Minister's offices on Friday urging the authorities to investigate the suspected kidnapping of an exiled activist by unknown gunmen last week in Cambodia.Wanchalearm Satsaksit, 37, a previously little-known pro-democracy activist who fled from Thailand following a 2014 military coup, was seized on a street outside his apartment in Phnom Penh on June 4.Cambodian authorities initially said they did not have enough information to investigate, but later said they would. Thailand government officials have denied any role in the disappearance."It has been more than a week since this happened, but there has been no progress in the investigation," Jutatip Sirikhan, president of the Student Union of Thailand, said at
Alleged sexual assault on schoolgirls in Thailand prompts national reckoning on patriarchy
Indonesia

Alleged sexual assault on schoolgirls in Thailand prompts national reckoning on patriarchy

Incessant rapes and sexual assaults on schoolgirls have shocked Thailand leading to social media unrest and intensified calls for severe “capital” punishment for sex offenders in the country.In May, a grandmother reported to the police that her 14-year-old granddaughter had been raped over the course of more than a year. The attacks, according to the child, happened several times at her school in northeastern Thailand, where she was reportedly abused by five teachers and two male alumni.Besides the assaults, the men were also accused of filming the acts and using the video clips to threaten the child, who had kept it a secret since March last year.Shortly after her story made headlines, another student from the same school reported that she too was raped by some of the suspects. She is 16
Malaysia to go into ‘recovery phase’ until Aug 31: PM Muhyiddin
Indonesia

Malaysia to go into ‘recovery phase’ until Aug 31: PM Muhyiddin

Malaysia's movement control order (MCO) imposed to control the spread of COVID-19 will enter a “recovery phase" beginning June 10 until August 31, Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin said on Sunday.Muhyiddin said the recovery phase is part of the country's exit strategy from the MCO, following a downward trend in the infection rate. "Malaysia has successfully contained the spread of the pandemic and will now enter the recovery phase," he said.Under the recovery, “almost all” social, educational, religious and business activities, as well as economic sectors will reopen in phases, with standard operating procedures to be adhered to, Muhyiddin said.“Interstate travel will be allowed, except for areas placed under enhanced MCO, while the country's borders will remain closed”, the prime minister s
Indonesian President thanks Modi for pharma supplies
Indonesia, Politics, World

Indonesian President thanks Modi for pharma supplies

The two leaders discussed issues related to citizens stuck in each other’s nations       Indonesian President Joko Widodo has appreciated India’s efforts in in ensuring continued supplies of pharmaceutical products to his country in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic.   In a telephone conversation with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday, the two leaders discussed issues related to their citizens present in each other’s countries, and agreed that their teams would remain in touch to ensure all possible facilitation in this regard, according to an official release.   “Discussed COVID-19 pandemic with good friend President @Jokowi,” the PM tweeted after the call. Modi assured the Indonesian President that India would do its best to prevent disruption in supplies of medical produ
Indonesia to ban air, sea travel to end-May: officials
Indonesia, World

Indonesia to ban air, sea travel to end-May: officials

Indonesia will temporarily ban domestic and international air and sea travel, with some exceptions, starting this week to prevent a further spread of the coronavirus, the transport ministry said in a statement on Friday.   The announcement came as the holy month of Ramadan began in the world's largest Muslim majority country, and the government has already banned citizens' traditional annual exodus from the cities to the provinces during the holiday period..   The ban on sea travel took immediate effect, but the ban on air travel will start on Saturday so that some pre-booked flights can go-ahead.   The ban will apply across-the-board until May 31. The ministry had previously given different dates for the end of the ban for different modes of transport.   Cargo transport is exempte
Millions of people in Indonesia could be at risk
Indonesia, World

Millions of people in Indonesia could be at risk

Some parts of Indonesia that do not have early warning systems in place for earthquakes could be at increased risk of tsunamis, according to a new study.    Analysis of more than 2.5million years' worth of geological data revealed 19 enormous ancient underwater landslides around the island nation.  The submarine landslides happened, on average, once every 160,000 years.   Should one of these events happen in the modern world, the most at-risk locations would be the cities of Balikpapan and Samarinda, with a combined population of over 1.6 million people. Researchers say the proposed new capital city of Indonesia at Balikpapan Bay would also be heavily affected.  The research team, led by Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, said the findings suggest coastal communities in the country witho