University students have the right to hold a rally, but they must follow the existing laws and not disturb public order.
Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Indonesian Police's investigation team is yet in the process of conducting a probe into the deaths of two students of the University of Halu Oleo, Southeast Sulawesi Police Chief Brigadier General Merdisyam stated.

Randi, 21, dead after a live bullet pierced his chest, while Yusuf Kardawi, 19, was hit on the head during a demonstration before the regional legislative council (DPRD) building in Kendari, Southeast Sulawesi, on September 26, 2019.

The Indonesian Police is directly supervising the investigation process.

Merdisyam noted that the police officers had neither live nor rubber bullets while guarding demonstrations held by university students.

University students are entitled to stage rallies, but they should adhere to the existing laws and not disturb public order, he emphasized.

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President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) had earlier issued instructions to Indonesian Police Chief Gen. Tito Karnavian to conduct a probe into the alleged repressive acts of some policemen against the students staging demonstrations in some cities.

"Since the start, I repeat, I have told the Police chief that his personnel should not act repressively. I order (the Police chief) to investigate his corps," Jokowi stated at the Presidential Palace Complex, Jakarta, on Friday (Sept 28).

"The Police chief has informed me that there is no order to bring weapons to confront demonstrators. This will be investigated," the president stated.

Furthermore, Jokowi called on all parties to exercise self-restraint and to not speculate before the police concludes its investigation.

In the meantime, university students had staged demonstrations across regions in Indonesia over the past several days to oppose the revisions of several laws, including those on the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) and Criminal Code (KUHP), which are believed to be regressive for democracy and the fight against corruption.

The rallies in Jakarta, Makassar, Medan, and several other regions on Tuesday (Sept 24) turned chaotic, as the police resorted to using water cannons and firing tear gas to disperse demonstrating students. Some police chased students and battered them with clubs, causing injuries to several of them.

The Jakarta Police deployed some 18 thousand police officers to guard the Parliament building in Jakarta on Sept 24.

Chief of the Jakarta Police, Inspector General Eddy Pramono, stated that 39 police officers and 265 students were injured in the clashes, with 11 students requiring hospital treatment on September 24, 2019.

On Sept 25, thousands of senior high school and vocational school students rallied to express their solidarity with the university students in Jakarta and other cities.

On Sept 26, thousands of students from universities in several regions, such as Surabaya, Mataram, Aceh, Garut, Kendari, and Magelang, again held demonstrations.

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Translator: Anita P Dewi, Fardah
Editor: Sri Haryati
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