Protests against the arrival of US President George W. Bush were held today in a number of Indonesian cities. Protests occurred in Solo, Semarang, Yogyakarta, Denpasar, Jakarta, Jember and Makassar. The protests were marked by US flags and posters of George Bush being burnt.
Radio Sonora reported that students in Yogyakarta, Central Java, gathered at the Gadjah Mada University (UGM) roundabout. The Yogyakarta Student Executive Council Alliance includes students from UGM, the Yogyakarta State University, the Yogyakarta Muhammadiyah University, the Ahmad Dahlan University and the Indonesian Islamic University.
In the action, aside from giving speeches, they also carried posters with the writing “Reject Bush’s Arrival in Indonesia”, “Cut the Diplomatic Relationship with the US”, “Bring Bush before the International Court as a War Criminal” and “The Gallant Social Leaders will Meet Bush”.
Also based on the Radio Sonora report, actions opposing Bush were also held by scores of students in front of the US Consulate General in Denpasar, Bali. They unfurled a number of banners rejecting Bush’s policies.
Meanwhile, a protest by the Indonesian Muslim United Action Front (KAMMI) continued at the Hotel Indonesia roundabout in Jakarta. The students burnt and tore up posters of Bush. They also took their protests to the US Embassy. Prior to this, a protest were also held by the Student Movement for Liberation.
The Agence France Presse news agency reported that actions against Bush are also continuing in Solo, Semarang, Jember, and Makassar. In Jember and Solo protesters burnt US flags and called Bush a terrorist.
Bush will arrive in Denpasar Bali tomorrow, October 22, after visiting Singapore. Bush will stay at Pulau Dewat for around four hours and will meet with Indonesian President Megawati Sukarnoputri and a number of Islamic figures.
[Translated by James Balowski.]