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Jakarta Post

PDI-P questions military training for FPI members

  • Margareth S. Aritonang

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Mon, January 9, 2017   /  06:50 pm
PDI-P questions military training for FPI members A sense of nationalism -- Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu puts pins on Bela Negara (state defense) program recruits at an inauguration ceremony in Skouw-Wutung near the border with Papua New Guinea on Tuesday. (JP/Nethy Dharma Somba)

Members of the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle have taken a different stance to fellow lawmakers by supporting the Indonesian Military’s (TNI) decision to strip an officer off his position for giving Bela Negara (state defense) training to members of the Islam Defender Front (FPI).

PDI-P praised the TNI for a “quick response” by dismissing Lebak military commander Lt. Col. Czi Ubaidillah. Other lawmakers, such as Fadli Zon, had criticized the decision, saying training for FPI members was fine.

“[The firing] shows that the TNI, as an institution, has admitted that there was a flawed procedure in arranging the training [in Lebak],” PDI-P executive member Andreas Hugo Pareira said Monday.

Andreas, who is also a member of House of Representatives Commission I that oversees defense affairs, called on the military as well as the Defense Ministry to thoroughly review the defense training policy.

According to Andreas, the TNI has yet to provide a clear definition of threats, particularly from the outside, that Indonesia must deal with in training ordinary citizens to defend the state.

The state defense program has raised criticism from the public ever since it was initiated by the Defense Ministry last year, with people questioning the need to equip citizens with military skills. (evi)

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