National

Police to question Anas
Urbaningrum on defamation
case in Blitar

Police said they would question Democratic Party chairman Anas Urbaningrum in relation to charges of defamation he filed against fugitive graft suspect and former party colleague M. Nazaruddin in Blitar, East Java.

"Anas is now in Blitar. National Police investigators will fly out from Jakarta to question him as a witness at the Blitar Police office tomorrow at 3:00 pm," National Police spokesman Insp. Gen. Anton Bachrul Alam said Tuesday.

He dismissed speculation that Anas was being shown preferential treatment by being questioned in Blitar.

"He just happened to be there and he was prepared to face questioning," Anton said.

Anas’ lawyers filed charges of defamation against former Democratic Party treasurer Nazaruddin at National Police headquarters earlier this month. Anas said he was disturbed by graft allegations leveled at him in a widely seen text message purportedly sent by Nazaruddin.

In the message, Nazaruddin accused Anas of receiving Rp 2 billion (US$234,000) in a bribery case linked to the construction of a Southeast Asian (SEA) Games construction project.

Nazaruddin also said Anas embezzled another Rp 7 billion during his successful bid to be Democratic Party chair last year. (rcf)

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