30 December 2011

Indonesia: Land conflicts multiply in 2011

The Indonesian Farmers Union has said that the number of land conflicts across the nation multiplied by more than five times this year to 120 cases, compared with 22 cases recorded last year

The Jakarta Post | 12/29/2011

“This data excludes the land conflict in Bima [West Nusa Tenggara],” Union leader Henry Saragih said Thursday as quoted by tempo.co, referring to a clash between protesters and local police which led to the deaths of two protesters on Saturday.

Henry said many of the conflicts, which have involved farmers, private companies, mining and farming companies, drinking water companies and state-owned enterprises, have become protracted and with no resolution being achieved.

“That’s why farmers have to face problems like arrests, evictions and shootings,” he said.

The union’s national strategy analysis department chief, Yakub, said the land conflicts were triggered by diminishing land areas and a lack of land reforms.

Yakub said the National Land Agency recorded 2,791 land disputes this year.

“The cases were mostly related to land acquisitions, which resulted in human rights violations,” he said.

The union has urged the government, therefore, to issue a regulation on land reform to prevent such conflicts from happening in the future. (swd)

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