Joko Widodo warns Jakarta rioters

World | 22 May 2019 6:36 pm

Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo said authorities have the volatile situation in the capital Jakarta under control after six people died in riots by supporters of his rival in last month’s presidential election.

The clashes began last night when supporters of former general Prabowo Subianto tried to force their way into the downtown offices of the election supervisory agency and have continued unabated since then. More than two dozen vehicles were burned as rioters took over neighborhoods in central Jakarta, throwing rocks and Molotov cocktails at police who responded with tear gas, water cannon and rubber bullets.

Flanked by the military chief and other top leaders, Widodo said: “I will work together with anyone to advance this country, but I will not tolerate anyone who disrupts the security, democratic processes and unity of our beloved nation.”

Subianto, a volatile ultra-nationalist politician, has refused to accept the official results of the April 17 election and instead declared himself the winner. The Election Commission yesterday said that Widodo, the first Indonesian president from outside the Jakarta elite, had won 55.5 percent of the vote, securing the moderate technocrat a second term. Subianto, an elite figure from a wealthy family connected to former dictator Suharto, also lost to Widodo in 2014. He has made four unsuccessful bids for the presidency since Suharto was ousted in 1998.-AP


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