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Jakarta Post

Residents, sex workers vow to defend Dolly

  • Indra Harsaputra

    The Jakarta Post

Surabaya   /   Tue, June 17, 2014   /  10:02 pm

Workers and residents in the Dolly red-light district, one of Southeast Asia's largest, have threatened to fight off officers that will be sent in to forcibly close down the area on Wednesday. 

"We will defend Dolly and are prepared to fight for it. Our actions will be proof of our protest against the forced closure of the Dolly and Jarak red-light districts," Anik, a pimp, told reporters on Tuesday.

Anik explained that hundreds of residents would block access to Dolly and Jarak by standing guard in the streets beginning at 6 a.m. on Wednesday. 

Surabaya Mayor Tri Rismaharini, widely known as Risma, has pledged to close down Dolly, saying that the closure would be in line with city bylaw No. 7. 1999 that bans using a building as a place of prostitution.

Along with Risma, Social Affairs Minister Salim Segaf Al Jufri is endorsing the shutdown.

Surabaya Legislative Council (DPRD) speaker Muhammad Machmud said that even though the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) caucus did not agree with the closure plans, a majority of the lawmakers at the DPRD did. He added that not all pimps and sex workers protested the shutdown. 

According to the Surabaya Social Agency, there were at least 1,187 sex workers and 311 pimps in Dolly, most of them from outside Surabaya. The Social Affairs Ministry has allocated Rp 8 billion (US$672,664) to be paid as compensation to the 1,187 sex workers, or roughly Rp 5 million per person.(fss/dic)

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