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  Indonesia's crisis: far from over

A new report released today by the International Crisis Group (ICG) concludes that while impressive political progress has been made, Indonesia’s crisis is far from over. Indonesia may not be on the point of breaking up or descending into chaos, but the government has not yet been able to show the way forward to a permanent resolution of the many challenges it faces.

The report, Indonesia’s Crisis: Chronic but not Acute, underscores the extraordinary political transition that Indonesia has experienced during the last two years from a society long ruled by a military-backed authoritarian leader to one in which an elected government was installed through an open and largely democratic process.

Its broad conclusion is that while there is much that the international community can do to assist the ongoing reform process — and to stop the crisis becoming acute — international measures should, as far as possible, support Indonesia's own programs, and avoid imposing external priorities which do not accord with those of Indonesians themselves. It is particularly important that pressures emanating from the international community should not aggravate political and social tensions in ways that could upset the delicate balance of forces which at present is favourable for continuing democratisation.

The report — the first since ICG established a presence in Indonesia in March — describes the serious political, regional, communal, legal and economic problems and challenges the country still faces, and identifies in outline appropriate responses to them by the international community. It will be followed by a series of further reports addressing particular issues in greater detail.


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