Tag: Jakarta

Jakarta cleans up after violent anti-labor law protests

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — Authorities in Indonesia’s capital on Saturday were cleaning up burned-out cars, government offices and bus shelters that were set ablaze by protesters enraged over a new law they say will cripple labor rights and harm the environment.

Protests in many Indonesian cities turned violent Thursday. At least 20 bus stops and other transit facilities were destroyed in Jakarta, causing 55 billion rupiah ($3.7 million) in damage, said Jakarta Gov. Anies Baswedan.

Calm has largely returned after the government warned protesters it won’t tolerate any further destruction and attacks on police and communities.

Labor organizers staged a three-day national strike Tuesday to demand the government revoke the legislation.

The Job Creation Law approved by Parliament on Monday is expected to substantially change Indonesia’s labor system and natural resources management. It amended 79 previous laws and was intended to improve bureaucratic efficiency as part of efforts by President Joko Widodo’s administration to attract more investment.

The demonstrators say the law will hurt workers by reducing severance pay, removing restrictions on manual labor by foreign workers, increasing the use of outsourcing, and converting monthly salaries to hourly wages.

Widodo told a televised news conference late Friday that the new law was meant to improve workers’ welfare.

“What I see is the widespread protest against the Job Creation Law is basically driven by disinformation about the law’s substance and social media hoaxes,” Widodo said.

He also dismissed reports that workers wouldn’t be paid during their leave.

“I assure you that this is untrue. Workers’ leave still remains and is guaranteed,” Widodo said.

Widodo urged those who are dissatisfied with the new law to challenge it at the Constitutional Court and avoid protests.

Jakarta Police spokesman Yusri Yunus said police have arrested 1,192 protesters, half of them high school students who came from outside the city.

“Most of them don’t understand the substance of the new law,” Yunus said, “They have been provoked by invitation on social media to create a riot in Jakarta.”

Indonesia, Southeast Asia’s largest economy, is eagerly courting foreign investors as key drivers of economic growth in a nation where nearly half the population of 270 million are younger than 30.

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Hundreds arrested at ‘omnibus law’ demonstrations in Jakarta

Indonesian police arrested 400 people Thursday at protests in the capital Jakarta against a contentious new jobs-creation law that critics say undermines workers’ rights, state news agency Antara reported.



a group of people standing around a fire: A protester throws a traffic cone onto a fire during Thursday in Jakarta.


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A protester throws a traffic cone onto a fire during Thursday in Jakarta.

At least 60 demonstrators and six police were injured at the demonstration near the Presidential Palace during the third day of a nationwide strike and demonstrations in the Southeast Asian nation, the news agency reported.

Videos showed protesters shouting, throwing stones, breaking into buildings and setting fires near the national palace as police deployed water cannon and tear gas to disperse the crowds.

The Indonesian Red Cross said some protesters were suffering from a shortness of breath after police fired tear gas. They also fired water cannon to disperse the crowd.

Critics say the new legislation, locally known as the “omnibus law,” scraps some labor rights, indigenous community rights and environmental protections. They also complain the legislation was rushed through parliament without consultation with unions.

President Joko Widodo has touted the law as a tool to create new jobs, reform labor regulations, cut red tape and attract foreign investment.

Protests erupted in major cities across Indonesia after the law’s passage in the House of Representatives on Monday.

Jakarta Metropolitan Police spokesman Yusri Yunus told Antara that police officers were injured after a group of people joined the demonstrations, and started rioting and vandalizing public facilities.

Yunus confirmed the 400 arrests and referred to the demonstrators as “an anarchic group.”

Jakarta police have deployed over 9,000 personnel as a precautionary measure against protests, Yunus told Antara.



Police use shields to protect themselves Thursday, the third day in a nationwide strike against a controversial new labor law.


© BAY ISMOYO/AFP/AFP via Getty Images
Police use shields to protect themselves Thursday, the third day in a nationwide strike against a controversial new labor law.



a group of people in front of a large crowd of people: Protesters gather in Jakarta Thursday to demonstrate against the law.


© BAY ISMOYO/AFP/AFP via Getty Images
Protesters gather in Jakarta Thursday to demonstrate against the law.

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Jakarta protests: Hundreds arrested at labor law demonstrations

At least 60 demonstrators and six police were injured at the demonstration near the Presidential Palace during the third day of a nationwide strike and demonstrations in the Southeast Asian nation, the news agency reported.

A protester throws a traffic cone onto a fire during Thursday in Jakarta.

Videos showed protesters shouting, throwing stones, breaking into buildings and setting fires near the national palace as police deployed water cannon and tear gas to disperse the crowds.

The Indonesian Red Cross said some protesters were suffering from a shortness of breath after police fired tear gas. They also fired water cannon to disperse the crowd.

Critics say the new legislation, locally known as the “omnibus law,” scraps some labor rights, indigenous community rights and environmental protections. They also complain the legislation was rushed through parliament without consultation with unions.

President Joko Widodo has touted the law as a tool to create new jobs, reform labor regulations, cut red tape and attract foreign investment.

Protests erupted in major cities across Indonesia after the law’s passage in the House of Representatives on Monday.

Protesters gather in Jakarta Thursday to demonstrate against the law.

Jakarta Metropolitan Police spokesman Yusri Yunus told Antara that police officers were injured after a group of people joined the demonstrations, and started rioting and vandalizing public facilities.

Yunus confirmed the 400 arrests and referred to the demonstrators as “an anarchic group.”

Jakarta police have deployed over 9,000 personnel as a precautionary measure against protests, Yunus told Antara.

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