Tension, which has been mounting of late in Java, erupted this week (24-28 November) into race riots, and led to an increased military presence in Semarang, on the north of the island.
GV Army roadblocks in Semerang, Indonesia
GV Armoured cars parked on roadside (2 shots)
TS Closed shops
SV Damaged shop fronts with broken windows (3 shots)
GV Wrecked buildings (3 shots)
SV Smouldering debris (2 shots)
SV Damaged building (2 shots)
CU Signs attached to car, railings and buildings (3 shots)
GV Soldiers in streets (3 shots)
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Tension, which has been mounting of late in Java, erupted this week (24-28 November) into race riots, and led to an increased military presence in Semarang, on the north of the island. During the unrest, shops were broken into and set on fire, and anti-chinese slogans were painted on buildings.
SYNOPSIS: The army has been maintaining an uneasy calm in the streets of Semarang. Armoured vehicles were posted on the roads into the town, as troops stopped and questioned people about their business there. Many Chinese-owned shops there remained shuttered following the outbreak of racial violence. Other shops had been badly damaged in the riot, with dozens of windows broken.
The damage recalled the racial unrest of the mid-1960s, when thousands of Chinese in Indonesia were said to have been the victims of what was described then as a "backlash of racial resentment." In those years, the issue was an abortive coup which the Chinese had allegedly backed. Indonesia broke off diplomatic relations with China, and people who held Chinese passports were herded who held Chinese passports were herded into refugee camps to be sent back to the People's Republic of Mao tse-Tung.
Direct trading with China resumed only this year, but much of the resentment from other ethnic groups against the Chinese stems from their trading power -- they run many of Indonesia's shops and other areas of commerce. Having launched another scheme to repatriate a million Chinese, the government last June issued a decree saying that all small businesses must have native Indonesian on their management staff.