The Jakarta Post
Dozens of farmers from the Kendeng karst area in Central Java staged another protest on Tuesday against the operation of a cement factory in their neighborhood.
Their second protest this month, they demanded that President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo protect their rights by making state-owned cement manufacturer PT Semen Indonesia cease operations in Kendeng. The farmers claim the company continues to operate despite the ongoing second phase of an environmental impact analysis that will determine whether the factory can operate.
They also demanded the government "ensure those campaigning for the environment are free from any form of intimidation and criminalization," said Ngatiban, who represents the farmers, in a press release received by The Jakarta Post on Tuesday,
On Tuesday, local authorities, including from the Jakarta Public Order Agency (Satpol PP), planned to tear down a tarpaulin tent erected by the farmers across from the State Palace in Central Jakarta, kompas.com reported.
A number of officials from the office of the presidential chief of staff, who went to the scene to meet with the protesters, immediately stepped in and prevented the authorities from pressing ahead with the plan.
Jokowi previously ordered the factory to suspend its operations while various institutions, such as the Environment and Forestry Ministry, the Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry and local administrations, carried out an assessment. (ipa)