Mon, 14 Apr 2003

Ba'asyir's trial to start soon

JAKARTA: The Central Jakarta Prosecutor's Office will submit to the court on Monday the case file on Muslim cleric Abu Bakar Ba'asyir who is charged with immigration and subversion offenses,

The handover of the files to the Central Jakarta District Court will start the countdown to the much-awaited trial of Ba'asyir, who is suspected of being the spiritual leader of the Jamaah Islamiyah (JI) terrorist group.

Ba'asyir has been detained for almost six months. Despite resistance from Ba'asyir's followers, police arrested him several days after the Bali bomb blasts that killed 202 people on Oct. 12 last year.

JI is said to be a wing of the al-Qaeda international terror network operating in Southeast Asia, and is aimed at establishing a theocratic state covering Indonesia and neighboring countries.

Ba'asyir, 64, has denied any wrongdoing. -- JP

;JP;MUN; ANPAa..r.. Scene-YLBHI-problems LBH offices permitted to raise fund JP/4/SCENE

LBH offices allowed to raise funds

JAKARTA: Legal Aid Institute (LBH) offices across the country will continue to provide pro bono services as their parent organization, the Indonesian Legal Aid Institute (YLBHI), has decided to allow them to raise funds following its financial difficulties.

"We have agreed to let the LBH offices raise funds themselves as we can't play a central role any longer," Wirawan of LBH Bandung, who presided over the YLBHI national meeting, said on Friday.

A total of 14 LBH offices agreed that they would start raising funds from those local and international donors that are not banned by the YLBHI.

The LBH offices will also continue to recognize the YLBHI as their parent organization despite the fact that they will be allowed to finance their own operations.

The LBH offices used to depend financially on the YLBHI, the only party previously permitted to raise funds. The YLBHI used to pay out Rp 500 million a month to fund the running of the LBH offices.

The YLBHI's financial shortages worsened after it severed ties with funding organizations from the United States, Australia and Britain in protest against these countries' involvement in the attack on Iraq. -- JP

;JP;IWA; ANPAa..r.. Environment-WSSD-result JP/4/environ

Action needed to implement WSSD

JAKARTA: Experts said on Friday the results of the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) would remain mere words on paper if no concrete action was taken at home.

Noted environmentalist Emil Salim urged the relevant ministers to draw up action plans to implement the recommendations of the WSSD, and to stick to them.

"At least five sectors must start sitting down together to prepare action plans, namely the water, health, energy, agriculture and biodiversity sectors," he said.

"Don't talk so much, just do it."

Mas Achmad Santosa of the Indonesian Center for Environment Law (ICEL) agreed with Emil, and slammed ill-conceived policies that neglected the environment.

"We can see how other ministries want to revise Law No. 41/1999 on forestry so as to permit mining in protected forests, and how the Jakarta administration wants its coastal reclamation project to continue despite the decision of the State Minister for the Environment to prohibit it," he said. -- JP