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Editorial (922)

27
December

 

The Indonesian Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy said that the target for foreign tourists in 2022 had been achieved. Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, Sandiaga Uno at the Year-End Press Conference, Monday (26/12) said according to the Central Statistics Agency, 3.92 million foreign tourists had visited Indonesia. This achievement exceeded the target of 3.6 million visits.

Minister Sandiaga Uno also said that for 2023, the target for foreign tourist arrivals was set at 3.5 to 7.4 million visits. The hope is that this target will again be exceeded, even though there is a threat of a 2023 recession.

It is no exaggeration that Indonesia is optimistic that this target can be realized again. After successfully holding the G20 Presidency, in 2023 a number of international events will be held by Indonesia. There will be around 300 meetings during Indonesia's Chairmanship in ASEAN in 2023. If the Covid-19 situation is getting under control, it is hoped that these meetings can be held face to face.

Apart from the Mandalika Moto GP which will be held in October 2023, several international sports events will also be held in Indonesia, such as the U20 FIFA World Cup, the FIBA basketball world championship, the 2023 World Beach Games and also the F1H20 world speed boat race.

Confidence in achieving the target of foreign tourists is also based on the potential that Indonesia has. Five Super Priority Destinations, namely Lake Toba in North Sumatra, Borobudur in Central Java, Mandalika in West Nusa Tenggara (NTB), Labuan Bajo in East Nusa Tenggara (NTT), and Likupang in North Sulawesi are also strong attractions to attract foreign tourists to enjoy the beauty and uniqueness of Indonesia. Another potential that Indonesia has is tourism villages. Around 1200 villages out of 75 thousand villages have the potential to become tourism villages to offer a complete experience that combines cultural, natural and unique components.

Indonesia has also launched the Proud National Movement for Traveling in Indonesia. This program not only can boost the number of domestic tourists, but also can become a program for the Indonesian Diaspora. According to data from the Indonesia Diaspora Network, around 8 million diaspora are spread across the world.

Optimism to reach the target, of course, must be realized with maximal work. The support of all parties is one of the keys. With maximal work from stakeholders to promote all of Indonesia's tourism potential and support from all parties, the 2023 tourist target can be achieved.

27
December

 

Recently, there has been concern over the increase in Covid-19 cases in China. Several leading scientists and advisers to the World Health Organization (WHO) think a new wave of coronavirus will emerge in China. So,it is too early to declare the end of the emergency phase of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Experts' views on the Covid-19 pandemic have changed since Chinastartedeasing its Zero-Covid policy last week. The Chinese government finally relaxed the policy following an unprecedented public outcry.

Expert projections show that China may face an explosion of Coronavirus cases. Next year, China is predicted to record more than one million deaths from Covid-19.

The Zero-Covid approach in China has indeed kept the infection and death rates relatively low. But,the WHO says the approach is not "sustainable" due to concerns about the impact on people's lives and the country's economy. Experts say President Xi Jinping's move to ease Zero-Covid policies has changed the global picture.

Marion Koopmans, a WHO committee official and advisor on the emergency status of Covid-19 told Reutersthatthe world was in a very different phase of the pandemic. In his opinion, the pending surge in China was like a wild card. Something that is hard to predict.

Meanwhile,the Chinese government said last Wednesday (21/12) that not a single person had died of Covid-19 the previous day. The criteria for recording deaths from the virus have been changed. According to Beijing,only those who died directly from respiratory failure caused by the virus, will statistically count as deaths from Covid-19. Previously, people who died from any illness while infected with the virus, were counted as deaths from Covid. This way of recording causes high death rates in many countries.

Starting this weekend until next week, the world community will enjoy the year-end holidays. Many people will use it to meet and hang out with friends and relatives. Therefore, caution and the application of health protocols must continue to be carried out to reduce the rate of increase in cases and prevent a new wave of Covid-19.

20
December

 

United Nations officially revokes Iran's membership of the UN Commission on the Status of Women. The decision was taken in a voting meeting related to the resolution submitted by the United States on Wednesday (14/12). In that vote, 29 countries voted in favor of the resolution to remove Iran from the UN Commission on the Status of Women for the remainder of its 2022-2026 term. There were 8 countries voting against the resolution,and16 countries abstained. This result only applies to the remaining term of Iran's membership in the UN Commission on the Status of Women today, namely from 2022 to 2026.

The resolution, as quoted by France 24, Thursday (12/15/2022) states, the Iranian leadership continues to undermine and further suppress the human rights of women and girls. This includes the rightsto freedom of expression and opinion, and often involves the use of excessive force. The Iranian government is said to have pursued policies that flagrantly contradict the human rights of women and girls.

Meanwhile, the United States Ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield after the vote saidthatremoving Iran from the UN Commission on the Status of Women is a very important matter for Iranian women. According toLinda, the decision sends a message to Iranian women that the international community supports them.

Iran said it was disappointed with the decision. Iranian Ambassador and permanent representative to the UN, Amir Saeed Irvani, as quoted fromcnn.com(15/12) said that the resolution to remove Iran from the UN Commission was baseless or illegal.

Iran's disappointment is understandable, because even if the revocation of membership is valid for only a few years, the Iranian side will suffer losses because of it. At the very least, over the next few years, Iran will lose financial support. So far, the implementation of policies related to gender and women's empowerment has received financial support from the UN Commission on the Status of Women. Iran has also lost the opportunity to cooperate with various government agencies in addressing issues of gender status.

However, if one looks closely, in the end, it is the Iranian women who suffer the most. With the expulsion of Iran from the UN Commission, all efforts for gender equality to women's empowerment will become increasingly difficult over the next few years.

It is hoped that the Iranian government will not dissolve in disappointment and will show more respect for the human rights of women and girls, including the rightsto freedom of expression and opinion to avoid other international sanctions.

20
December

 

At last, Indonesia has its own Criminal Code -KUHP. The Indonesian House of Representatives (DPR RI) passed the Criminal Code Law draft (RUU KUHP) into law on Tuesday (6/12/2022).

Previously, the Criminal Code in force in Indonesia was a Dutch product which had taken effect since 1918. Quoting the official website of the National Law Development Agency, Minister of Law and Human Rights, Yasonna H. Laoly said that this ratification is a historic moment in the implementation of criminal law in Indonesia. After years of using the Dutch-made Criminal Code, now Indonesia has its own Criminal Code.

The ratification of the Criminal Code Bill took a long way. As stated by Minister Yasonna Laoly, Indonesia has been formulating criminal law reforms since 1963. Before and after the ratification, the pros and cons of the newly passed Criminal Code emerged. Not only from within the country, but also several foreign parties also issued their opinions. One of them is the UN Representative in Indonesia. In a press release published on the official website of the UN Representative in Indonesia, the UN expressed its concern over a number of articles that have the potential to violate freedoms and human rights.

Something new is not necessarily able to satisfy all parties, likewise with the Criminal Code. Minister Yasonna Laoly appealed to those who disagree with or protest against the newly passed Criminal Code to convey it through the correct mechanism. The public are allowed to submit a lawsuit to the Constitutional Court -MK.

Take for example, the foreign parties, such as UN Representatives. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has summoned the UN Representative on Monday (12/12). Spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Teuku Faizasyah in a press conference, Monday said that the etiquette that applies is the interaction of foreign or UN representatives in one country through communication channels to discuss various issues, not to use the mass media as a tool to convey something that has not been verified. He added that it is appropriate for foreign representatives, including the United Nations, not to rush into issuing opinions before obtaining clearer information.

 The Law on Criminal Procedure Code will only come into effect in 2025. There is enough time to socialize the Criminal Code Law which is considered the starting point for criminal administration reform in Indonesia. Its implementation is, of course, the joint responsibility of the Indonesian nation.This can be understood not only by the Indonesian people, but also foreigners. Thus, fears of unwanted impacts from the implementation of the Criminal Code Law can vanish.

10
December

 

As of last Wednesday(7/12), Dina Ercilia Boluarte Zegarra officially took office as the new President of Peru after former president Pedro Castillo was impeached hours after he tried to dissolve parliament. Dina Boluarte who previously served as vice president was sworn in as President after a dramatic day in Lima, Peru's capital. Boluarte became the first female president in the country's history.

Prior to his impeachment, former President Castillo saidthathe would replace congress with an "extraordinary emergency government" which he said was aimed at re-establishing the rule of law and democracy. According to Castillo, a new congress with constituent powers to draft a new constitution would be formed in no more than nine months. However, the congress controlled by parties opposed to Castillo held an emergency session followed by an impeachment vote that Castillo tried to prevent.The congress accused Castillo of mutiny and then arrestedhim. According to local media,Castillo was arrested while he was heading to the Mexican embassy in the capital Lima.

Peru has gone through a difficult political period, with many presidents ousted from office in recent years. Castillo, a former left-wing school teacher, was elected in June 2021 in a polarizing election in which he defeated his right-wing rival Keiko Fujimori.Recently, he has been fighting corruption charges, which he says are part of a plot to overthrow him. Castillo became the third president since 2018 to be removed under the "morally incapacitated" provision in the constitution.

Meanwhile, President Dina Boluarte stated she would rule until July 2026, when Castillo's presidency should end. In her oath,Dina Boluarte saidthatshe would faithfully assume the office of president, in accordance with Peru's Political Constitution. After taking the oath of office, Boluarte called for a political ceasefire to address the crisis gripping the country.

Hopefully,the new Peruvian government, led by a female president, will be able to overcome the political crisis that has been going on in the country since 2016.In addition,the economic crisis and rising prices caused by the war between Russia and Ukrainecan also be solved.

10
December

 

The Indonesian nation is currently in mourning. On November 21, an earthquake with a magnitude of 5.6 hit the Cianjur area, West Java Province. 334 people died and more than 100 thousand people were displaced by the earthquake.

Having not finished yet facing the impact of the Cianjur earthquake, Mount Semeru in East Java Province on December 4 spewed hot clouds as high as more than 5 thousand meters. Volcanic hot clouds and ash spread in the surrounding area, causing thousands of people to flee. There are even 3 hamlets buried in volcanic ash. So far, no fatalities have been reported.

The Center for Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation (PVMBG) raised the status of Mount Semeru from 'Alert' to 'Caution' or from Level III to Level IV. The public are advised not to carry out activities within a 13-kilometer radius of the eruption center, because there are fears that the hot clouds will spread more widely.

Earthquakes and volcanic eruptions are not strange to the people of Indonesia. Geographically, Indonesia is an archipelagic country located at the confluence of four tectonic plates, namely the Eurasian plate, the Indo-Australian Continent, the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean. In addition, Indonesia is located in the Ring of Fire zone where there are many active volcanoes. This geographical aspect causes Indonesia to be prone to earthquakes and tsunamis. Indonesia is said to have an earthquake rate 10 times compared with the United States. In fact, Indonesia is ranked first in the threat of a tsunami according to data from the United Nations Disaster Risk Reduction.

The Indonesian people are still learning from the various natural disasters that have occurred, how to prepare themselves for the impact of disasters. Maybe, the government is more prepared regarding disaster mitigation. This can be seen from the speed with which the logistical aid was distributed and the preparation of the evacuation sites. Meanwhile, the number of fatalities can also be minimized. This can be seen from the absence of reports of deaths due to the eruption of Mount Semeru. The local government, assisted by officers from the central government, the Indonesian Armed Forces –TNI, and the National Police -Polri, was swiftly able to evacuate residents from the disaster area.

But actually, the most important thing is preparing residents for disaster mitigation. They must be given knowledge that they live in an area with the potential for natural disasters. They should also be given knowledge of what to do if a disaster occurs or if there are signs that a natural phenomenon is about to occur. In this way, casualties can be avoided.

10
December

 

India and the United States troops on Wednesday (30/11) held joint exercises near the disputed zone with China which is commonly called the Line of Actual Control (LAC). Interestingly, this exercise took place amid increasing tensions between India and Beijing.

The Indian Ministry of Defense, as quoted by voaindonesia (30/11) said, the exercise which lasted for 15 days focused on reconnaissance and warfare skills in the mountains. This includes evacuation of victims and medical assistance during wartime in bad terrain and climatic conditions. In addition, there were also humanitarian assistance, disaster management, and operations related to peacekeeping.

The Chinese government is very concerned about this joint military exercise between India and the United States. According to Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson, Zhao Lijian, as quoted from rmol.id (01/12/2022), the military exercise called Yudh Abhyas was considered to have violated the bilateral agreement that India had signed with China in 1993 and 1996. Zhao added that what India was doing with the United States would only complicate its bilateral rapprochement with China.

The negotiations on the border dispute between the two countries, which began in 2021, did not go smoothly and have not produced results. China and India blamed each other for the failure of the talks.

China says India is making unrealistic demands. Meanwhile, India has accused China of launching aggressive attacks on its territory since clashes that claimed lives in 2020.

Even though things didn't go well, on July 20, 2022, China and India agreed to handle border conflicts in a spirit of togetherness and equal partnership.

It is feared that joint Indian-US troop exercises could undermine this spirit in resolving territorial disputes between China and India.

Both China and India should comply with what was agreed on July 20, 2022. Both sides need to continue to maintain effective communication and prioritize dialogue in handling problems. They should refrain from carrying out any actions or activities in the disputed area that have the potential to provoke one of the parties.

10
December

 

Indonesia has succeeded in carrying out the mandate of the G20 Presidency. Indonesia has not only successfully held hundreds of meetings up to the Summit, but has also achieved concrete results for a number of projects and strategic issues. The G20 Summit adopted and ratified the G20 Bali Leaders Declaration. In addition to the declaration, the Indonesian Presidency has also produced concrete deliverables which contain a list of cooperation projects for the G20 member countries and the invitees. This cooperation project will help ground the work of the G20 closer to the people.

President Joko Widodo expressed his joy at Indonesia's success in carrying out the mandate of the G20 presidency which had succeeded in ratifying the agreement of the G20 leaders. This was conveyed by the Head of State in a Limited Meeting on Evaluation of the Implementation of the G20 Summit at the Presidential Office in Jakarta, Monday afternoon (28/11). President Joko Widodo's satisfaction with the success was expressed by saying that the closed meeting was not an evaluation, but a thanksgiving meeting.

Indonesia certainly cannot continue to sink into the euphoria of success. Furthermore, concrete steps must be implemented immediately. Quoting the Cabinet Secretary's official website, Monday (28/11), President Joko Widodo asked his aides to immediately execute all programs and initiatives that had been agreed upon during the implementation of the G20 Indonesia Presidency. There are 226 projects that are multilateral in nature with a value of US$238 billion, and 140 projects that are bilateral in nature with a value of US$71.4 billion.

President Joko Widodo has appointed a person in charge for both investment, politics, and non-investment and non-politics or cooperation of a broader nature. According to Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi, Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment, Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan will follow up the investment matters. Meanwhile, political matters are the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Retno Marsudi; outside of politics and investment are the responsibility of the Coordinating Minister for the Economy, Airlangga Hartarto.

Hard work is not over. All parties must work together to do all programs and initiatives. The hope is that the successful implementation of the G20 Presidency will be continued with further successes. It not only has a positive impact on Indonesia in terms of the economy, but also strengthens the level of world confidence in Indonesia's ability to become an important actor in the international arena.

10
December

 

More recently, North Korea accused the United States of pushing it into a security crisis. In a statement released late Tuesday(22/11),DeputyDepartmentDirector of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea,Kim Yo-jong lashed out at Washington for asking the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to limit North Korea's "illegal weapons".Kim remarked thatit was ironic that the United States vented its anger at the failure to realize what he called "malicious intentions" by announcing a joint statement with Britain, France, Australia, Japan and South Korea, immediately after the opening session of the UN Security Council ended.

Last Monday (21/11), the United States called on the UN Security Council to make a presidential statement to hold North Korea accountable for its intercontinental ballistic missile test on Friday(18/11). Presidential statements usually come when a UN Security Council session does not reach consensus, or one permanent member vetoed the resolution. Presidential statements are issued after a vote of the permanent and non-permanent members of the UN Security Council, but are not legally binding.

The US Ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield saidthatit was critical that the 15-member Security Council respond to North Korea's actions with one voice. She also emphasized that China and Russia have supported Pyongyang by blocking UNSC actions.

North Korea is indeed not alone. Pyongyang has the defense of its two close allies, China and Russia. China'sAmbassador to the United Nations, Zhang Jun saidthatBeijing was concerned about the escalation of tensions and confrontation on the Korean Peninsula. According to him, the UN Security Council should help defuse tensions and not always put pressure on Pyongyang.

Meanwhile, Russia's Deputy UN Ambassador,Anna Evstigneeva accused Washington of trying to coerce North Korea into unilateral disarmament through sanctions and other coercion. She blamed the missile test on military exercises being conducted by the United States and its allies on the Korean Peninsula.

Of course, it is commonplace that everyone will think that he is in the right position. What is certain, however, is that tensions on the Korean Peninsula will impact other regions. It is hoped that all parties can exercise restraint so that the world, which is currently being affected by the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, doesnotworsen at all.

10
December

 

The Labor Party and labor union organizations appreciate the Indonesian government for issuing the Minister of Manpower Regulation (Permenaker) No. 18/2022 concerning the Determination of the 2023 Provincial Minimum Wage (UMP). The regulation was issued on Saturday (19/11) with the 2023 Provincial Minimum Wage set to increase by 10 percent.

The President of the Labor Party, Said Iqbal in a virtual press conference, Sunday (20/11) said that the Labor Party and labor union organizations appreciated and thanked President Joko Widodo and Minister of Manpower Ida Fauziyah for the issuance of the new regulation. Iqbal hopes that the new regulations will become the basis for the government, starting from the central and regional governments, to determine increases in the provincial minimum wage or UMP as well as district and city minimum wages (UMK). He also hopes that the regulation, which will take effect as of January 1, 2023, will become the legal basis in the following years.

The government's move to increase workers' wages by 10 percent is the right step. This increase is very meaningful, considering that next year will be a gloomy year in the economic field, as has been touted by most world leaders, including President Joko Widodo. President Joko Widodo stated that 2023 is predicted to be a dark year due to the economic, food and energy crises due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the war between Russia and Ukraine. The President admitted that he got the prediction after talking to the Secretary General of the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the heads of the G7 countries.

It is hoped that the policy of increasing workers' wages by 10 percent will prevent workers from falling into extreme poverty as a result of the crisis.

Although some workers are disappointed because the increase is only 10 percent, they also have to understand that the government must also protect employers so that they are not too burdened by high wages for workers. The economic crisis will befall anyone, the government, employers and workers alike. The government must ensure that the business being carried out does not stop because of the crisis. If the company goes bankrupt, workers will automatically lose their jobs. Therefore, the understanding and support of all parties are needed so that the Indonesian people together can stand firm amid the economic crisis.

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