New Internationalist

Action On Indonesia

Issue 318

new internationalist
issue 318 - November 1999

ACTION on INDONESIA

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Say no to Suharto’s rich kids

AOTEAROA/NEW ZEALAND
Suharto’s family members, plus other Indonesians who got rich during his reign, quietly bought up real estate in Aotearoa/New Zealand. This was first exposed by the Campaign Against Foreign Control of Aotearoa who aroused a public outcry against Lilybank Lodge – a luxury hotel and hunting retreat built on the banks of Lake Tekapo which was owned by Suharto’s son Tommy. Now the Campaign has discovered that Goldfield Heights, overlooking Queenstown’s icy Lake Wakatipu, has attracted a clutch of Indonesia’s élite to its shores, including Suharto’s middle daughter, Siti Hediati Prabowo (‘Titiek’) and her husband, the sacked armed forces commander General Prabowo Subianto.

The Campaign wants properties acquired by corrupt Indonesians to be seized. They also comment on the Suhartos: ‘This family of thieves presiding over a system of mass murder and institutionalized looting are the ones who should be in the dock, for crimes against the people of Indonesia and for crimes against humanity.’

Campaign Against Foreign Control of Aotearoa
PO Box 2258 Christchurch.
Tel/Fax: +64 3366 3988.
E-mail: cafca@chch.planet.org.nz
Website: www.converge.org.nz/watchdog
Amnesty New Zealand
PO Box 793 Wellington.
Tel: +64 4499 3349. Fax: +64 4499 3505.
E-mail: campaign@amnesty.org.uk/
Website: www.amnesty.org.nz/

Stop British-made slaughter

Soldiers
D SAULNIER / CAMERA PRESS

BRITAIN
In May 1997 the new Foreign Secretary Robin Cook said: ‘We will not permit the sale of arms to regimes that might use them for internal repression or international aggression.’ It seemed reasonable to believe Cook – as early as 1978 he described the sale of British Hawk aircraft to Indonesia as ‘particularly disturbing’. But that same month, May 1997, the new government gave the go-ahead to the export of riot-control vehicles and water cannons which were used on unarmed pro-democracy demonstrators in Jakarta.

TV direct-action satirist Mark Thomas broadcast a conversation recorded with Paul Greenwood, director of CS-gas manufacturers Pains Wessex, who says: ‘The UK Government don’t care. I’ve had the DTI (Department of Trade and Industry) down... and I’ve said can I take the order and get somebody else to make it and ship it (and they said) “Yeah that’s fine”. Just as long as we’re not shipping it in the UK they don’t give a toss.’ The Blair Government had approved 64 new arms contracts to the Indonesian Government by February this year and fewer than 1 per cent of the applications were turned down between August 1997 and August 1998. The Government sent three British Hawk aircraft to Indonesia in September this year. Campaign Against the Arms Trade are keeping up the pressure.

Campaign Against the Arms Trade (CAAT)
11 Goodwin Street Finsbury Park London N4 3HQ.
Tel: +44 171 281 0297.
Fax: +44 171 281 4369.
E-mail: enquiries@caat.demon.co.uk 
Website: www.caat.org.uk

Amnesty UK
99-119 Rosebery Avenue London EC1R 4RE.
Tel: +44 171 814 6200.
Fax: +44 171 833 1510.
E-mail: information@amnesty.org.uk
Website: www.amnesty.org.uk/

Down to Earth
PO Box 218 London SE5 7LU.
Tel/Fax: +44 1508 471413.
E-mail: dtecampaign@gn.apc.org

Tapol
111 Northwood Road Thornton Heath Surrey CR7 8HW.
Tel: +44 181 771 2904.
Fax: +44 181 653 0322.
E-mail: tapol@gn.apc.org 
Website: www.gn.apc.org/tapol/listabouttapol.htm

Demand change in the tourism industry

AUSTRALIA
Thousands of Australians travel to Bali each year. But most put their money into the pockets of Suharto’s cronies who own many of the luxury hotels or international corporations rather than helping the locals. Although millions of tourism dollars are poured into Bali, in the words of one Balinese; ‘The people here mainly think about how they are going to eat tomorrow.’ There are a number of groups working to promote more ethical tourism. Contact:

Responsible Tourism Network
PO Box 34, Rundle Mall SA 5000.
Tel: +61 8 8232 2727 or + 61 8 8232 2727.
Fax: +61 08 8232 2808 or +61 8 8232 2808.
E-mail: info@tours.caa.org.au
Website: www.caa.org.au/travel/rtn

The travel retailer Flight Centre has become the first to react to the tragedy in East Timor. Flight Centre – which sends around 100,000 travellers to Indonesia each year – wrote to Indonesian embassies around the world this year warning that it will encourage its clients not to holiday in Bali. Chief executive officer, Graham Turner, said in September: ‘We will also be advising people not to fly with Garuda, the [Indonesian] national carrier.’ Flight Centre’s business to Indonesia amounts to between $130 million and $150 million a year, or 10 per cent of their business out of Australia – a powerful pressure point. When booking a holiday ask your travel agent exactly where your money is going and use your purchasing power for change.

If you are interested in finding out more, Murdoch University offers an Asian Sustainable Development online study course. There is a special stream on Society, Culture and Ecology in South-East Asia, co-ordinated by Indonesia specialist, Dr Carol Warren. One of the major case studies offered is based on Carol’s fieldwork in Bali, looking at social change impacts of tourism.
Tel: +61 8 9360 2345.
E-mail: asianst@central.murdoch.edu.au
Website: wwwistp.murdoch.edu.au/

Australian Council for Overseas Aid
Private Bag 3 Deakin ACT 2600.
Tel: +61 2 6285 1816.
Fax: + 61 2 6285 1720.
E-mail: acfoa@acfoa.asn.au 
Website: www.acfoa.asn.au/

ACFOA Human Rights office
124 Napier St Fitzroy, VIC 3065.
Tel: +61 3 9417 7505.
Fax: +61 3 9416 2746.
E-mail: acfoahr@acfoa.asn.au

Action in Solidarity with Indonesia
and East Timor (ASIET)
PO Box 458 Broadway NSW 2007
Tel: +61 2 9690 1032.
Fax: +61 2 9690 1381.
E-mail: asiet@asiet.org.au 
Website: www.asiet.org.au/

Amnesty Australia
Private Bag 23 Broadway NSW 2007.
Tel: +61 2 9211 3566.
Fax: +61 2 9211 3608.
E-mail: adminai@amnesty.org.au
Website: www.amnesty.org.au

Refuse to support repression

CANADA
While the Canadian Government claims to support human rights, it has a deeply complicit set of economic relationships with the Indonesian Government and military. This was dramatically demonstrated when the Royal Canadian Mounted Police violently suppressed human-rights demonstrations at the 1997 APEC summit meeting held in Vancouver, in order to spare President Suharto embarrassment. The National East Timor Action Network demands the Canadian Government stop all ties to the Indonesian military including both new and old export permits for military hardware and any training or future military sales; and suspend all official economic aid to the Indonesian Government, instead transferring humanitarian aid through accountable non-governmental organizations.

National East Timor Alert Network,
PO Box 4115, Station E Ottawa, ON K1S 5B1.
Tel: +1 613 230 4070.
Fax +1 613 230 8854.
E-mail: info@etan.ca
Website: www.etan.ca

Amnesty Canada
4F, 214 Montreal Rd Vanier, ON KIL 1A4.
Tel: +1 613 744 7667 or 1 800 AMNESTY
Fax: +1 613 746-2411.
E-mail: info@amnesty.ca
Website: www.amnesty.ca/

Canadian Action for Indonesia and East Timor
PO Box 562, Stn P Toronto, ON M5S 2T1.
Tel: +1 416 531 5850.
Fax: +1 416 588 5556.
E-mail: cafiet@interlog.com
Website: www.interlog.com/~cafiet

Canada-Asia Working Group
947 Queen St W, Suite 213 Toronto, ON M4M 1J9.
Tel: +1 416 465 8826.
Fax: +1 416 463 5569.
E-mail: krcawg@web.net

Canadians Concerned About Ethnic Violence in Indonesia
119 Spadina Ave, Suite 605
Toronto, ON M5V 2L1.
Tel: +1 416 977 9871.
Fax: +1 416 977 1630.
E-mail: national@ccnc.ca

End war in Aceh

UNITED STATES
Whether we like it or not, the US has the political power to bring warring parties to the negotiating table. Human Rights Watch has been consistently putting pressure on Indonesia and the nations that support it to halt human-rights abuses. They say the US can act on Aceh: ‘First, it can continue to press both President Habibie and General Wiranto for prosecutions of officers responsible for grave abuses during DOM (the period of military control). Habibie formally apologized to the people of Aceh for the abuses earlier this year, but such apologies carry no weight unless some form of redress, including prosecution in court, takes place. Second, it can urge the Indonesian Government to reduce troop strength in Aceh. Such a reduction would be a huge confidence-building measure by the Indonesian Government toward the Acehnese. True, the conflict is escalating, but in the past, more troops have just meant more massacres, and that pattern appears to be continuing. Moreover, fewer troops might force the Government to explore non-military solutions. The Acehnese we interviewed also want a third party to mediate the conflict. The Government thus far has rejected this out of hand; it does not want to give legitimacy to Aceh Merdeka.’ Human Rights Watch, 34th Floor, 350 Fifth Avenue, New York NY 10118-3299. Tel: +1 212 290 4700. Fax: +1 212 736-1300. E-mail: hrwnyc@hrw.org 
Website: www.hrw.org/campaigns/indonesia/index.htm

Yellow Ribbon Campaign
(Human rights equality for Indonesian Chinese)
Suite 700, 456 Montgomery Street
San Francisco CA 94104-1240.
Website: www.huaren.org
Amnesty USA Campaigns Department
600 Pennsylvania Ave SE Washington DC 20003.
Tel: +1 202 544 0200.
Fax: +1 202 546 7142.
E-mail: robinbrown@amnesty-usa.org 
Website: www.amnesty-usa.org/

Worth reading on... INDONESIA
The Mute’s Soliloquy – A Memoir by Pramoedya Ananta Toer (Hyperion, 1999; ISBN: 0-7868-6416-8). A great writer and political prisoner shares his memories. Inside Out East Timor with photography by Ross Bird and text by Xanana Gusmao, José Ramos Horta and Bishop Carlos Belo (Herman Press, 1999; ISBN: 0-9577180-3-9). Stunning photos and captions illustrate the beauty of East Timor and its people. Reformasi – Crisis and Change in Indonesia edited by Arief Budiman, Barbara Hatley and Damien Kingsbury (Monash Asia Institute, 1999; ISBN: 0-7326-1179-2). A great selection of Indonesian and other writers explaining Indonesia’s political change. The Rough Guide to Indonesia by Stephen Backshall, David Leffman, Lesley Reader, Henry Stedman (Rough Guides, 1999; ISBN:1-8582-8429-5). The best and most recent travel and country guide. Inside Indonesia magazine. A monthly magazine on Indonesian issues. To subscribe, visit their website www.insideindonesia.org/  or contact:
PO Box 1326, Collingwood, Vic 3066, Australia.
Tel: +61 3 9419 4504. Fax: +61 3 9419 4774.
E-mail: admin@insideindonesia.org

Websites
Amnesty International campaigns for all Indonesians whose human rights have been violated. See contact details for your country and check out the Indonesia page of their general website: www.amnesty.org/ailib/countries/indx321.htm

The World Wide Web Virtual Library on Indonesia has links to just about every organization on Indonesia under the sun: http://coombs.anu.edu.au/WWWVLPages/IndonPages/WWWVL-Indonesia.html

The INCORE Guide to Internet Sources on Conflict and Ethnicity in Indonesia is good for background information on the country: www.incore.ulst.ac.uk/cds/countries/indonesia.html#topsource

Indonesia Online – the National Library of Australia site has comprehensive information and links, especially useful for Australian surfers. www.nla.gov.au/asian/indo/indoline.html

SaveOrDelete – the Greenpeace site for uncovering ancient forest crime - carries an investigation of the links between The UK and Indonesia's Timber Barons. www.saveordelete.com

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