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October 7, 2020, 02.07 AM

BANDUNG, – Protests against the new job creation laws in different places in Indonesia’s West Java ended in chaos, causing damage to a police vehicle and a police officer was injured on Tuesday.

In Bandung, the capital of West Java province, the protesters closed the Pasupati flyover and destroyed a police vehicle. The chaos occurred in front of the West Java Legislative Council building.

A reporter on the scene saw the protesters, clad in various alma mater jackets, initially gathered in front of the West Java Legislative Council building at 15:45pm local time. Some gave speeches, burned tires, and performed theatrical acts for about an hour. The protesters urged the government to revoke the new job creation law.

The protesters then moved to Pasupati flyover, causing road closure and traffic congestion. After a few minutes, the protesters began to disperse and the traffic returned to normal.

Also read: Indonesian Police Anticipate Labor Protests Against Jobs Bill

However, some protesters remained to stay at the legislative council building. And in the afternoon, the protest tensions heated up. Some were seen throwing objects towards the police on the other side of the fences of the legislative council building. The situation became relatively calm during the Maghrib prayer. But after the prayer, the tensions began to heat up again.

The police tried to calm the crowd and urge them to disperse. However, the protesters became increasingly violent and pushed the fences of the legislative building. The chaos was inevitable and the police fired teargas at protesters, urging them to back off. The protesters fled in various directions and some threw stones at the police vehicle.

“Please restraint yourselves from being an anarchist,” urged the police officer through loudspeakers.

The tensions continued until 18:45pm local time. The barricades set up by the police gradually began to push back the demonstrators.

Meanwhile in Serang, Banten the chaos started as the police urged the college students to disperse after the time limit was ended. However, the students ignored the police, starting to throw stones and fireworks at the police. The police then fired teargas at the crowd.

Also read: Indonesian Government Coalition Set to Pass Controversial Jobs Bill

Some policemen were injured because they were hit by stones. One of them was the head of Banten Police Operations Bureau Police Commissioner (Kombes) Amiludin Roemtaat who was wounded on the forehead.

“This is so usual. A stone was thrown at me during the protest,” Roemtaat told journalists while showing his wound.

“We arrested some protestors. [I tell my team] not to hit them. And stones were thrown at me, instead,” Roemtaat added.

One of the protestors who is known as Arman said the new omnibus law on job creation must be revoked because it does not support labor.

“The omnibus law on job creation is dangerous for the people and all of us in the future,” said Arman in his speech.

The House of Representatives voted on Monday to pass the job creation bill into law which aims to improve the investment climate in Indonesia despite labor unions were against it.

(Writers: Agie Permadi, Rasyid Ridho | Editor: Abba Gabrillin)


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