Indonesia

Indonesia has great natural wealth but many of its citizens live in extreme poverty. Democratic progress has been made since the resigation of former president Suharto in 1998, but many civil society organisations feel that far too little progress has been made towards sustainable management of the country's resources, and ensuring that Indonesia's diverse communities have a real say in decisions which affect their future.

Down to Earth No. 43, November 1999

In South Kalimantan province, coal mining - involving Australian companies - is continuing to disrupt the lives of local communities. In Hulu Sungai Utara district, the district head, Suhailin Muchtar said that both legal and illegal coal mining activities had damaged the environment. PT Adaro Indonesia's coal mine (part-owned by Australia's New Hope) operates in this district.

Down to Earth Special Issue, October 1999

The Indigenous Peoples' Congress was held only a few weeks after one hundred West Papuan representatives came to Jakarta as part of a long-awaited 'National Dialogue' to discuss the future of their homeland. President Habibie offered nothing. So it was not surprising that the Congress' Papuan contingent was in no mood for compromise. They were united in their message: 'Merdeka' - independence.

Down to Earth Special Issue, October 1999

Although only 20 of the 208 Congress delegates were women, this small contingent made a much greater impact than these numbers suggest. Women from Kalimantan, Sumba, Timor, Sulawesi, North Sumatra and and West Papua who had never met before banded together and challenged other participants to recognise their place in indigenous societies and their values, problems and solutions.

Down to Earth Special Issue, October 1999

At the Congress, delegates drew up work plans for AMAN based on priorities identified in earlier discussions. Their draft programme was presented in a plenary session and the following plan of action agreed. As five sub-groups had worked independently there is some overlap between sections.

Down to Earth Special Issue, October 1999

The Alliance of Indigenous Peoples of the Archipelago (AMAN) was created on March 21st, 1999 as a result of the Indigenous People's Congress. The formation of AMAN is a significant step forward in indigenous peoples' struggle for the recognition of their rights in Indonesia.

Down to Earth Special Issue, October 1999

This position statement was drawn up by Congress delegates at the end of a week of discussions about issues facing indigenous peoples.

Long before Indonesia became a republic, a panoply of indigenous communities was distributed across the archipelago.

Down to Earth Special Issue, October 1999

This Special Issue of Down to Earth reports on the first ever Congress of Indigenous Peoples of the Archipelago, held in Jakarta in March 1999, and the progress of a new alliance of Indigenous Peoples -AMAN- established at that event. It draws largely on Congress materials and statements from AMAN.