Friday, November 22, 2013

1) Six Arrested After Papua Police Station Burns

1) Six Arrested After Papua Police Station Burns
2) Indonesian Army Prepares New Encryption System
3) Indonesian Police Stop Cooperation with Australia
4) Year of dangerous living
5) Oz should apologize, move  on


1) Six Arrested After Papua Police Station Burns

Police in Papua arrested six men after a police station went up in flames in Mamberamo Raya early Friday morning.
The wooden police station was set on fire at 3 a.m. Friday, according to reports by the state-run Antara News Agency. It is unclear why the station was torched, or who was behind the attack, the report read.
“The fire broke out around 3:00 and there were six perpetrators arrested by the police,” Samay, a resident of Kasonaweja subdistrict, told Antara.
Police in Mamberamo Raya could not be reached for comment.
FRIDAY, 22 NOVEMBER, 2013 | 19:28 WIB
2) Indonesian Army Prepares New Encryption System
TEMPO.COPecatu - Indonesian Army Chief of Staff Gen. Moeldoko, said that his agency is currently preparing a new encryption method to protect strategic data from wiretapping.
"This is the only way to anticipate information leak," the General said after attending a national discussion on the Indonesian Chinese People and Entrepreneur Association (Permit) at the Rich Prada Hotel, Bali, Thursday, November 21.
Moeldoko also said that the wiretapping conducted by Australia on the President and a number of ministers, including first lady Ani Yudhoyono, was an illegal intelligence activity based on two reasons. The first reason, as he explained, was the wiretapping subjects were not related to national security, while the second reason is that the method of the information gathering has been leaked.
"What is the point of them [Australia] tapping the communication between the President and his wife?" he said.
In response to the issue, Moeldoko said that the Indonesian Army (TNI) had already halted a joint training with the Australian Military by recalling six F-16 aircrafts that supposed to participate in a joint-exercise at Darwin, Australia. Moeldoko also instructed to halt a joint-exercise between the Indonesian Army and the Indonesian Navy with Australia.
Moeldoko admitted that his actions would have a significant impact on the Indonesian military. However, he explained that the TNI will abide by its political stance that requires them to follow the government.
"After the both countries' relationship improve, military cooperation will commence," he said.

FRIDAY, 22 NOVEMBER, 2013 | 12:26 WIB
3) Indonesian Police Stop Cooperation with Australia
TEMPO.COJakarta - The Indonesian National Police has suspended some partnerships with the Australian Federal Police following recent uneasy diplomatic ties between the two nations. National Police spokesman Brig. Gen. Ronnie F. Sompie said that one of the partnerships that will be halted will be in the education sector. 
"For example, the plan to send detectives for a course in Australia has been postponed," said Ronnie at the National Police Headquarters on Thursday. 
Ronnie, however, added that collaborations revolving around crime, such as curbing human trafficking, would continue. Ongoing investigations handled by both Indonesia and Australia will also continue.

4) Year of dangerous living

IF you think relations with Indonesia have sunk to their lowest, think again. Unless Tony Abbott can find a way through Australia's present dilemma - even though it's primarily of former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden's making, not Canberra's - by Christmas, then the prospect looms that the crisis cannot be fully fixed until 2015.
This would threaten to set back the government's prospects of stopping asylum-seeker boats, perhaps for more than a year.
For next year will be one of tumultuous elections in Indonesia, the world's third biggest democracy, when nationalism will be pursued as a key voter rallying point, and any infringement of sovereignty, especially by Australia, will be seized on by candidates.
There is likely to be a race to the bottom, with the politician who is prepared to go furthest in attacking Australia perceived by many as a winner. This would mean, at best, a form of cold war between the capitals.
Meanwhile the President whose phone apparently has been tapped, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono - rightly described this week by Abbott as "a good friend of Australia, indeed as one of the very best friends that we have anywhere in the world" - is struggling for his place in history.
He is approaching the "lame duck" phase; constitutionally, he cannot stand again after two five-year terms at the top. He has been suffering bad domestic press in recent weeks, including being blamed for exacerbating Jakarta's already clogged traffic by ordering roads to be closed for the presidential motorcade. In return, he has refused to speak to several Indonesian media organisations.
So Yudhoyono's irritated tweet ("I regret the statement by the Australian Prime Minister that without remorse belittled Indonesia over this phone tapping matter") may reflect his being named in Snowden's stolen files at the worst possible time for him, as well as for Canberra.
The cultural dimension of the crisis is also a factor. In Indonesia, politics is personal, indirectness is a virtue, and negativity a vice.
Abbott says: "Australia should not be expected to apologise for the steps we take to protect our country, now or in the past." Most Australians would agree with him. But most Indonesians would expect an apology.
Only seven weeks ago, Abbott's first visit overseas as Prime Minister was to Jakarta; it was hailed as a diplomatic triumph.
But the warm glow from that visit evaporated swiftly, as members of SBY's cabinet, led by Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa, became critical by default in dealing with Australian politicians and senior officials, especially over asylum-seekers.
To an extent, they may have been seeking to remind Canberra that SBY is not Indonesia, or that if SBY did in a sense incorporate the country for many years, that period is now drawing to a close.
Abbott's position has been made more difficult this week by the absence of Foreign Minister Julie Bishop and, to a lesser extent, Defence Minister David Johnston, leading the Australian delegation at the important annual AUSMIN security talks with their American counterparts, this year in Washington.
If Bishop had been available, she could have made the initial running on the issue, taking the flak and shielding Abbott until the elements of a potential face-saver came into focus.
Nor is Kevin Rudd now readily available in parliament. It was during his prime ministership the phone-bugging was alleged to have taken place. And he might have issued a form of apology, his most celebrated skill.
It may have been especially puzzling for the Indonesians to have observed deputy Greens leader Adam Bandt accusing Abbott of appealing to the "redneck" vote by not apologising, and "worryingly risking the relationship with Indonesia".
Especially since the Greens' platform at the last election stated "the indigenous people of West Papua should have the opportunity to democratically decide their own future", and called for Australia to suspend military ties with Indonesia, "so long as such violence and human rights abuses continue".
There is no environmentalists' party in Indonesia, but 12 parties have been registered as eligible to compete in the national elections. And only a candidate backed by a party that wins more than 25 per cent of the popular vote, or 20 per cent of seats at the parliamentary election on April 9 next year, will be eligible to stand at the July 9 presidential election.
A second round of presidential elections will be held in September if no candidate gains a simple majority. And the inauguration of the new leader will take place on October 20.
Thus, given the usual complexity of choosing and bedding down a new cabinet, Indonesia will be into 2015 before a new leader is likely to be in a position to kiss and make up with Canberra, or to cut a new deal on asylum-seekers.
The leading presidential candidates, according to recent polling, are, in order, the new, "clean" governor of Jakarta, Joko "Jokowi" Widodo; the chief candidate offering a throwback to the old days, Suharto's son-in-law, former general Prabowo Subianto; wealthy tycoon and leader of Golkar, the biggest party, Aburizal Bakrie; and former president Megawati Sukarnoputri, whom many wish to see stand aside so her party can back Jokowi.
Tim Lindsey, professor of Asian law at the University of Melbourne and chairman of the Australia-Indonesia Institute, says the tone of Indonesian politicians and officials relating to Australia has been shifting for a while: "Without the difficulties over the boats, Indonesia wouldn't have reacted at this intensity over the spying."
No one, he says, would have been surprised at spying in each other's jurisdictions, and Indonesians knew Australia was involved in US intelligence-gathering.
"But the negative tone from Marty and others is entirely predictable," that without a negotiated agreement on the boats, frustration will surge. Jakarta indicated it was unhappy about Australia's election rhetoric about the boats, Lindsey says. "They had a painful nine months" during the prolonged campaign, he says. "They understood what was happening, and showed a deal of forbearance. But they made it clear that after the election it was time for a re-set, and serious negotiations to sort this out."
He says it is "crystal clear" what Indonesia wants: a Southeast Asian framework for an asylum-seeker deal, albeit one in which Indonesia is "front and centre", as the dominant power.
He says while Abbott's recent visit to Jakarta was viewed as a diplomatic triumph in Australia, it was perceived in Indonesia as an apology.
The tone of the relationship began to deteriorate after that, as it became clear each side had different expectations of the other.
"The Indonesians started saying, 'Don't you try and impose your solutions on us because we're not copping it any more, we're going to make life difficult for you,' " Lindsey says.
Indonesian officials and politicians, he says, "don't accidentally embarrass people. They do it for a reason."
The boats issue, which underlines the spying issue, is compounded, Lindsey says, by "Indonesia's lack of resources to manage the issue on their own".
The Indonesian navy has been the junior service - despite the country's 17,400 islands - since it was perceived as being aligned to the Left during the bloody civil war from which Suharto emerged as leader. And the limited resources it has are chiefly deployed to the north, a likelier area for threats to emerge.
This compounds the prickliness about impinged sovereignty, acting as a constant reminder - by the focus on the boat issue - of Indonesia's limited capacity to defend that sovereignty.
"We are pushing all the wrong buttons," Lindsey says.
The suspension of military cooperation and other tit-for-tat measures announced by the Indonesian President yesterday were thus just the start of what is set to be a rough ride for a long time, unless Abbott and Bishop, and Australia's very capable ambassador in Jakarta, Greg Moriarty, can find a way to cut through.
The window for even that is closing fast, says Lindsey, as Indonesia's political class seeks to draw attention to itself over and beyond the President himself, "and people get into a sense of hysteria about the succession".
For Natalegawa, who gained a PhD at the Australian National University and who was perceived after his appointment by Yudhoyono as Foreign Minister four years ago as a friend to Australia, the past few weeks have been an especial epiphany.
He has been involved in incident after incident that has added friction to the relationship, including the apparently unintended leaking of the transcript of a confidential conversation with Bishop in New York.
If Natalegawa wants to keep his job, he will have to impress all the potential presidential candidates that he has the capability, the strength and, yes, the nationalistic credentials to warrant his reappointment.
"No candidate for office would want to seem weak on sovereignty issues," Lindsey says.
In the past, Malaysia and Singapore have borne the brunt of electoral campaign rhetoric, but now Australia is caught in those headlights. Ross Taylor, president of the Australia Indonesia Institute, says: "Marty could strengthen his claim to keep his job if he was seen to be 'beating up' a bit on the new Australian government, which is not a particularly risky thing to do in Indonesia."
His institute's monitoring of the Indonesian-language press shows coverage of the spying issue as compared with asylum-seekers running at a ratio of at least 5:1. "So spying is what has really revved them up."
But even if the boats do stop, he says, Indonesia still has to cope with 10,000 asylum-seekers effectively stuck in Java and surrounding islands. And "at the moment Starship Indonesia is on auto-pilot," Taylor says. "The captain will retire after this trip. The crew are down the back, all manoeuvring as to who should take control, and how it should be landed."
Andrew MacIntyre, dean of the Australian National University's College of Asia and the Pacific, says the spying controversies have been swirling while Indonesia's Vice-President Boediono, who gained a master's in economics from Monash University and an undergraduate degree from the University of Western Australia, had been enjoying a highly congenial visit to Australia.
Relations can be restored to a sound level, he says, "but an election clogs everything up", while some of the rhetoric from Australia's election year has not helped.
If those relations are not retrieved before the election, he says, they may not be mended "until quite a long time after".
David Martin Jones, associate professor at the University of Queensland, says the challenge for the Abbott government is compounded by the volume of criticism at home: "There has been a focus among Australian academics on fear, including fear of Indonesia - especially on the part of Liberal governments, which are presumed to be Anglo-focused and awkward about Asia, if not downright racist and militarist - which is being played out amongst international relations theorists.
"Asians who know us are well aware that Australia endlessly self-lacerates, and take advantage of that tendency. Marty is quite a guy, a smart and sinuous diplomat very aware of the divisions within Australian political, academic and media worlds. He would be happily at home facing a friendly audience on the ABC's Q&A - probably more so than Julie Bishop, who would not."
5) Oz should apologize, move  on
With public anger in Jakarta unabated over Canberra’s spying allegations, a former Australian foreign minister said that it was high time the country apologized and did more than just wait “for the storm to pass”. 

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott has refused to heed Indonesia’s demands for an apology, saying that his country should not be expected to apologize for measures taken to protect it. As of Thursday, the Australian leader showed no indication that he would issue a formal apology. 

“An apology is the least Australia can offer now and, even with one, a long and rocky ride is inevitable,” former Australian foreign minister Gareth Evans said on the sidelines of a discussion on Thursday. “The most valuable currency in international diplomacy is personal trust and we breach that at our peril.”

He said it was not unusual for countries to devote intelligence resources to collecting information vital to their national interest. “That’s what intelligence agencies have always done and these roles are universally understood.”

He noted that Australia cannot just “batten down the hatches, wait for the storm to pass and maintain technical operations as usual”, especially to a nonthreatening Indonesia. 

“Indonesia is an open, democratic society in which information is freely available even on the most sensitive issues, if asked by a friendly neighbor such as Australia.” 

Evans said that bilateral relationships anywhere in the world faced problems from time to time. “Resolving them depends [on] trust and confidence of the highest level, the kind that has now been put at serious risk,” Evans said.

Former Indonesian foreign minister Hassan Wirajuda concurred with Evans’ sentiments, saying that it was “a reasonable expectation” to expect an apology. “We can see support for that in Australia.” 

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono sent an official letter demanding a formal response and clarification from Australia, presidential spokesman Julian Aldrin Pasha said. “We understand that Abbott communicated sincere regret. However, a formal gesture in response to our letter is needed.” 

Abbott was quoted by Australian media on Thursday as saying he had received the letter and would respond to it quickly and courteously. 

On Thursday, the Jakarta Police deployed 500 officers and two Barracuda armored vehicles to the Australian Embassy in Kuningan, South Jakarta, as hundreds of Laskar Merah Putih paramilitary members swarmed the facility, demanding an apology from Abbott. The protesters burned paper replicas of Australian and US flags while chanting the national anthem. 

Separately, a Twitter user, using the handle @MD_JKT48, and self proclaimed “newbie hacker”, claimed to have attacked the websites of the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and the Reserve Bank of Australia early on Thursday. The hacker threatened to launch his second salvo if Australia continued to refuse to apologize for its snooping operation. The two institutions confirmed that their websites fell afoul of cyber attacks. 

The National Police ensured the security of Australia nationals and its facilities in Indonesia. National Police spokesman Sr. Comr. Agus Rianto said that the force had deployed more than 1,600 personnel to guard nine spots in Jakarta deemed to be potential targets of attacks or locations for protests. “Among them were the Australian and US embassies.”

According to Agus, the police would boost security measures at the embassies until conditions returned to normal. “Foreign embassies in Indonesia, as much as our embassies overseas, are the representatives of those particular countries. We have an obligation to protect them,” he said.

A night before the protests, Australians planning to travel to Indonesia had been warned to “exercise a high degree of caution” over the possibility of “civil unrest and political tension”. “Australians should monitor local media, avoid protests, maintain a high level of vigilance and security awareness,” the advice says.

Meanwhile, Law and Human Rights Minister Amir Syamsuddin said that the diplomatic row would not affect the long-awaited parole for convicted Australian drug smuggler Schapelle Corby. 

“Our law clearly stipulates the process of parole. So, she will not be affected,” he said after a hearing at the House of Representatives.

In 2004, Corby was sentenced to 20 years in prison for attempting to smuggle 4.2 kilograms of cannabis into Bali. Yudhoyono granted her a five-year sentence reduction in 2012.

The parole, which has been caught up in bureaucratic red tape for weeks, will allow her to live outside Bali’s Kerobokan Penitentiary, but remain on the island, until 2017. (asw)

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