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Jakarta Post

NTT leaders declare campaign to end bride 'kidnapping' practice

  • Djemi Amnifu

    The Jakarta Post

Kupang, East Nusa Tenggara   /   Fri, July 3, 2020   /   03:26 pm
NTT leaders declare campaign to end bride 'kidnapping' practice Students and activists from the Women's Movement against Violence Alliance (Gerak Perempuan) participate in a rally in front of the Education and Culture Ministry on Feb. 10. They demanded an end to sexual violence at education institutions. (JP/Seto Wardhana)

Regional leaders of four regencies on Sumba Island in East Nusa Tenggara have declared their rejection of kawin tangkap (capture and wed), a form of bride kidnapping tradition that is commonly practiced on the island but seen as a violation of human rights.

The declaration was read out on Thursday by West Sumba Regent Agustinus Niga Dapawole, East Sumba Regent Gideon Mbiliyora, Central Sumba Regent Paulus Limu and Southwest Sumba Regent Kornelis Kodi Mete in Sumba’s largest town of Waingapu.

Women’s Empowerment and Child Protection Minister Bintang Puspayoga and East Nusa Tenggara Deputy Governor Josep Nae Soi also attended the declaration.

"I hope that this violence against women won't happen any longer in Sumba," Bintang said on the sidelines of the event.

Read also: NTT vows to abolish bride ‘kidnapping’ after nationwide public anger

She added that she would coordinate with the relevant ministries and institutions to end kawin tangkap.

The practice has been in the spotlight lately after a video of locals taking a woman in a public place went viral in social media. The footage showed a group of men carrying a distressed-looking woman to a black pickup truck.

Another woman later comes and hugs her through an open window, while trying to get her out of the vehicle.

Dozens of people can also be seen crowding the car, cheering and taking videos, while the kidnapped women cries as the event unfolds. (vny)