A policeman bleeds after a firecracker and a Molotov cocktail exploded in front of him during Wednesday night's riot in Central Jakarta. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)

Police Announce the Arrest of Another 185 Suspected Rioters


MAY 23, 2019

Jakarta. Police have arrested another 185 suspected rioters during Wednesday night's clashes in Jakarta, bringing the total arrested so far to 442, a spokesman said on Thursday.

Two were arrested in front of the offices of the Election Supervisory Agency (Bawaslu) in Central Jakarta and the rest in Slipi, West Jakarta.

"The crowds were mobilized, by design … we're conducting further investigations," National Police spokesman Insp. Gen. M. Iqbal said.

He added that there were two groups in the crowd of about 6,000 people gathered in front of the Bawaslu offices on Wednesday night – those who wanted to express their aspirations and those who came with the intention to create chaos.

"They also rioted in Slipi. They set alight two buses and two trucks belonging to the police," Iqbal said. Police have yet to determine the legal status of those arrested on Wednesday night.

Police announced on Wednesday that they had arrested 257 suspects, two of them linked to the Islamic State-affiliated Islamic Reform Movement (Garis).

Iqbal said four of the rioters arrested earlier also tested positive of drugs.

Chief Comr. Hengki Haryadi, head of the West Jakarta Police, said separately that of the 183 rioters arrested in Slipi and Petamburan on Wednesday, 51 were from Jakarta, 41 from Banten, 27 from West Java, 13 from Central Java and 11 from various parts of Sumatra.

Police seized Rp 20 million ($1,380) in cash and 19 envelopes containing Rp 100,000 each, in addition to items such as Molotov cocktails, arrowheads and stones, Hengki said.