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Indonesia OKs Landmark Sexual Violence Bill; Protesters Reject President’s Bid to Extend Tenure

HeadlineApr 12, 2022

Indonesia’s parliament has approved a landmark bill aimed at preventing sexual violence. The new legislation provides prison terms of up to 12 years for crimes of physical sexual abuse — both in and out of marriage — and criminalizes forced marriage and online sexual harassment. It also sets up a trust fund and recovery services to help survivors of sexual violence. Women’s rights groups spent six years campaigning for the legislation.

Outside Indonesia’s parliament, police fired tear gas and water cannons to clear hundreds of students who rallied Monday to protest high prices for staples like cooking oil. The students are also demanding that Indonesian President Joko Widodo back away from a proposal that he extend his tenure beyond the two terms in office allowed under Indonesia’s Constitution.

Muhammad Lutfi: “We are protesting the extension period for the president’s tenure and the increasing price of oil and many other things that are hurting people. What’s clear is how the elites are forcing themselves to delay the election, and that’s what hurts the Constitution.”

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