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North Sulawesi wants its own special economic zone

In the first quarter of this year, North Sulawesi’s economic growth hit 6.42, higher than the national growth rate.

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ZONAUTARA.com -North Sulawesi Governor Olly Dondokambey is demanding that the central government establish a special economic zone (KEK) in the province to transform the province into an economic hub in eastern Indonesia.

He has proposed integrating the KEK with Bitung Port. Doing so would transform the port into an international port, he claims.

“In our concept, North Sulawesi will host a seaport that will become a logistics center for other regions in eastern Indonesia,” Olly said in Manado recently, adding that the establishment of an international port in Bitung would create coast efficiencies for the distribution of goods to nearby provinces.

He gave as an example the fact that people in eastern Indonesia have to buy garments produced in China through Jakarta, while actually the Chinese products are imported through Singapore even though shipments from China to Bitung are technically closer.

“Why doesn’t the government open up direct shipments from China to Bitung? If this happens, businessmen from Gorontalo, Maluku and other provinces in eastern Indonesia will not need to purchase garments from Tanah Abang [market in Jakarta]. It will cut costs,” he added.

In the first quarter of this year, North Sulawesi’s economic growth hit 6.42, higher than the national growth rate.

(The Jakarta Post)

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India: Journalists shot, punched and kicked in Delhi communal violence

Journalists came under attack while covering the communal violence rocking northeast Delhi since Sunday, February 23.

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Police stand guard following clashes between supporters and opponents of a new citizenship law in New Delhi. (Credit: Prakash Singh/AFP)

ZONAUTARA.COM – Akash Napa, a journalist with JK 24×7 was shot and at least four other journalists were injured during communal unrest in Delhi on February 25 over the country’s controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and its affiliates the Indian Journalists Union (IJU) and the National Union of Journalists (India-NUJI) condemn the attacks and urge the India’s government to do more to ensure the safety of journalists in the country.

Journalists came under attack while covering the communal violence rocking northeast Delhi since Sunday, February 23. Several have been hospitalised after being punched and attacked by communal mobs, where police were reported as being absent or ineffective. Reports also suggested mob members were checking religious credentials of the journalists covering the protests. Television media were particularly targeted in the attacks.

Akash Napa, a reporter for JK 24×7 News TV channel, was shot while reporting in Maujpur and admitted to Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital in Dilshad Garden, North East Delhi.

According to JK 24×7 News TV, Napa’s condition is serious. Other journalists injured were Arvind Gunasekar, Saurabh Shukla, Mariyam Alavi and Sushil Rathi. Gunasekar lost several teeth after being punched in the face.

Gunasekar and Shukla were attacked while filming a mosque being set on fire. NDTV’s Mariyam Alavi and camera person Shushil Rathi were attacked while covering a violent protest. According to NDTV, members of the mob slapped NDTV journalist Akshay Kumar Dongare and tried to snatch his microphone and mobile while he was reporting the protest on February 24. According to IJU, the number of journalist attacked during the unrest is expected to be far greater than has been reported.

Apart from the direct attacks, the IJU said footage and photographs taken by journalists on their cell-phones were also deleted. Journalists posted stories to social media confirming that they were repeatedly asked by the protestors to disclose their religious identities.

During earlier protests to the CAA in December 2019, Indian police detained, abused and attacked scores of journalists covering protests in Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka and Kashmir who were covering the protests

Within the three days of the outbreak of the communal violence on February 23, at least 13  people have been killed, including the head constable of Delhi Police. Nearly 150 people have been injured in in northeast Delhi including Bhajanpura, Maujpur, Wazirabad, Jaffrabad, Babarpur, Vijay Park, Yamuna Vihar and Gokulpuri.  

The Indian Journalists Union (IJU) said: “The attack to journalists is an attack to the freedom of the press. IJU appeals all the concerned to respect the neutrality of journalists and their rights. The IJU demands insurance and adequate compensation to the journalists injured and for the equipment damaged by the rioters. At the same time, the IJU appreciates the journalists for their courage and determination to report the facts under the most trying circumstances”

The NUJ(I) said: “We request the Government of India to probe into incidents and punish the guilty. These incidents re-establish the justification of promulgation of enactment of Journalists Protection Act as demanded by NUJ(I).”

The IFJ said: “IFJ is saddened from the attack to the journalists during their coverage of the communal-unrest and it urges the government of India to ensure safety of the journalists. In addition to this, the way journalists were asked to reveal their religious- identity by the protestors indicates that protest is becoming more communal. Therefore, it is high time for the media house and journalists to maintain sensitivity to the conflict and promote religious harmony”.

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