Prabowo challenges Indonesian presidential election results in court
May 25, 2019 | 2:56 PM
by Agencies
Presidential challenger Prabowo Subianto.

Jakarta: Opposition figure Prabowo Subianto is challenging the result of Indonesia's Presidential Election.

Final results released by the country's the Election Commission showed that incumbent President Joko Widodo and vice-presidential candidate Ma’ruf Amin had won the election with 55.5 percent of votes, beating Prabowo and his running mate Sandiaga Uno.

Prabowo, through his lawyer, Bambang Widjojanto, filed a petition challenging the election result at the Constitutional Court of Indonesia.

The move follows riots in Jakarta that led to the deaths of eight people and left 541 protesters injured according to Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan.

Tens of thousands of soldiers and police officers were deployed on the streets of Jakarta to deter would be rioters ahead of Subianto's deadline to file an appeal challenge the result.

Nearly 60,000 security personnel were deployed Thursday, nearly double the previous number, after Widodo vowed that he “won’t tolerate” more riots.

The government has also partly blocked access to social media — including Twitter, Facebook and Instagram — in a bid to clamp down on fake news and hoaxes linked to the violence.

That moves come after fresh skirmishes erupted late Wednesday outside the election supervisory agency’s office in the heart of the city, with thousands of protesters chanting and waving Indonesian flags.

Some hurled stones, fireworks and Molotov cocktails at riot police who lined up behind a razor wire barricade near the election supervisory agency building, where a police post was torched.

Police pushed back the main group of rioters after firing tear gas and rubber bullets at the demonstrators.

Indonesia’s capital been gripped by bigger demonstrations in the past, but the level of violence in this week’s clashes has not been seen in years.

Authorities said the violence was orchestrated by people who came to Jakarta to stir up trouble.

Nine officers had been injured, police said.

On Thursday, National Police spokesman Muhammad Iqbal said two of about 300 arrested suspects were linked to a hardline organisation that had once pledged allegiance to a terror group.

Elsewhere, smaller protests were held in Sumatra’s Medan city and in Pontianak on Borneo island, where over 500 demonstrators armed with stones and firecrackers blocked roads, damaged vehicles and set two police posts alight, local police said.

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