[A-List] Indonesia news
bantam at dingoblue.net.au
bantam at dingoblue.net.au
Tue Mar 19 14:34:20 MST 2002
Keaney Michael wrote:
> Rob, have you been following this? Is Murdoch reliable?
Well, he's not crossed my sights in his three years there, so he hasn't
been caught in a nonsense or anything like that. And it does seem
Murdoch enjoys support among Indonesian colleagues. What's more, the
mail is that the Indonesian government itself is uncomfortably torn on
the issue. Australia as a political whole is rather on the nose in
Indonesia, so I think we can draw inferences from that support. Haven't
a clue what occasioned the ban, as Murdoch's stories are little
different (same gort thrust, different gory particulars) from others
reported at the time, by other Australian journos and, indeed, by
transnational wire services. Indeed, given the footage I've seen on
free-to-air telly, of ET and Aceh alike, it's hard to imagine how even a
tortured-to-death baby can make the stories much uglier. I will venture
to say that we are not hearing enough of the post-camp-closure
population movements nor the the people stuck in the ET enclave within
northern West Timor. By my count, we're still several thousand men
short on reasonable expectations. While women and children may have
been, to some extent, forcibly resettled, the form guide tells me the
chaps could have had an altogether nastier, more terminal, time of it.
It's in nobody's interests right now that the story be further pursued
(Sukarnoputri has softened a little as the need to normalise Indo/Oz
relations presses; the Howard government is under pressure on all
fronts, and in lighter news months would have been copping an awful
thrashing concerning its recently established foreknowledge of the ET
outrages; and Howard needs to prove that what's left of his battered
repel-all-boarders policy can work in so far as Indonesia can be moved
to stem the tide on its corrupted waterfront). As Murdoch does seem to
have been sniffing about in just such nooks and crannies, the answer may
> Indonesia bans foreign journalist
> John Aglionby in Jakarta
> Monday March 18, 2002
> The Guardian
> Indonesia has reversed almost four years of relaxing media
> restrictions by banning one of the most high-profile foreign
> correspondents working in the country for reasons it is refusing to
> Australia's Fairfax company, which publishes the Sydney Morning Herald
> and the Age newspapers, said yesterday it was "gravely troubled and
> deeply regrets" that their Indonesia correspondent, Lindsay Murdoch,
> had been denied an extension to his journalist visa.
> "It has been made perfectly clear to us, in our discussions with the
> government of Indonesia over the past several months, that this
> decision has been taken in reaction to the authoritative reporting of
> Mr Murdoch on human rights and related issues in Indonesia," Fairfax
> said in a statement.
> Murdoch, who has reported from Indonesia for three years, said he was
> "shocked and appalled by this decision which is a serious blow to
> press freedom in Indonesia".
> An Indonesian foreign ministry spokesman, Wahid Supriyadi, said an
> appeal had been rejected by "an inter-departmental review committee"
> and it did not need to be justified.
> "It's uncommon for a country to explain why it refuses a person a
> visa," he said.
> Mr Supriyadi said the Australian newspapers were informed of the
> decision three months ago. "We asked them to nominate another
> candidate, we did not blacklist the newspapers."
> The newspapers said they would not allow a state to dictate who its
> correspondent should be.
> The ban is thought to be the first of its kind since the dictator
> General Suharto was ousted in May 1998. Since then there has been an
> explosion of press freedom for the domestic and foreign media.
> Murdoch said he was told that two articles in particular led to the
> ban. The first was about East Timorese children taken from refugee
> camps in West Timor and dumped in orphanages in Java, and the second
> was on violence in Aceh province.
> "It cited how soldiers in a village in Aceh poured boiling water over
> a four-month-old baby last May," he said. "The baby died."
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