The Jakarta Post
A clash has erupted between the police and protestors opposing the recently passed Job Creation Law in the Harmoni area near the State Palace in Central Jakarta.
Kompas TV has reported huge crowds of protesters, mostly university students, chanting and hurling stones at police officers. The police have fired rubber bullets, tear gas and water cannons to disperse the demonstrators.
The protesters have been gathered on several roads around the State Palace in Jakarta since about 11 a.m. to voice their opposition to the highly controversial Job Creation Law and have sought to assemble in front of the palace itself.
The police, however, have closed the palace’s main access points, namely Jl. Medan Merdeka Barat, Jl. Medan Merdeka Timur and Harmoni. The protesters gathered at several points, namely at the Harmoni intersection and the Horse Statue.
They also gathered in Cikini, Central Jakarta, according to social media reports.
Members of the National Association of University Student Executive Bodies (BEM-SI) previously announced that about 5,000 students would protest the newly passed law in front of the State Palace on Thursday starting at 10:00 a.m.
The students come from universities in Jakarta, Bandung, Medan, Lampung, Surabaya, Yogyakarta, Semarang, Makassar and Kendari.
Hundreds of workers have also taken to streets in Jakarta, rallying in Senayan and near the State Palace.
Beyond Jakarta, students and workers throughout the country demonstrated against the new jobs law on Thursday.
They have urged President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo to issue a regulation in lieu of law (Perppu) to annul the contentious law. (ggq)