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International News

May 22, 2019
8:57PM

Indonesia: Six die in election rioting in Jakarta

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In Indonesia, six people have died in election rioting in the capital Jakarta, as supporters of the losing presidential candidate General Prabowo Subianto burned vehicles and battled police and the government announced restrictions on social media.

Official sources said, the clashes began last night when supporters of  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.

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 on Tuesday said President Joko Widodo had won 55.5 per cent of the vote. Subianto,also lost to Widodo in 2014. He has made four unsuccessful bids for the presidency since Suharto was ousted in 1998.

Rudiantara, the communications and information technology minister, said features of social media including Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp will be restricted on a temporary basis to prevent the spread of hoaxes and inflammatory content.

National police chief, Tito Karnavian said the people who died in the rioting were hit by gunshots or blunt devices. Authorities are still investigating the death causes and are not ruling out the involvement of third parties acting as provocateurs. 

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