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Two Australians will soon be killed at a prison on the Indonesian island of Nusakambangan – for no deterrent effect. AAP/Darma Semito

There is no evidence that the death penalty acts as a deterrent

Joko Widodo argues that Indonesia needs to execute drug offenders like Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran to deter others, but he can produce no evidence to support this claim.
Australia attends the 60th anniversary of the Asia-Africa “Bandung” Conference this week as an observer. In 1955, Australia was a no-show and has had a hot and cold relationship with Asia ever since. from Carsten Reisinger/www.shutterstock.com

The ‘Bandung Divide’: Australia’s lost opportunity in Asia?

Indonesia is hosting delegates from dozens of countries this week to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the 1955 Asian-African “Bandung” Conference. Indonesians celebrate the conference as the country’s…
The Indonesian government invited Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir, who is wanted on war crime charges by the International Criminal Court. EPA/Morwan Ali

Why did Indonesia invite a leader indicted by the ICC for war crimes?

Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of genocide and other crimes in the Darfur conflict, failed to attend the 60th Asian-African Conference Commemoration…
Mangroves are still be cleared for aquaculture expansion. Since 1989, 6600 hectares of Tanjung Panjang Nature Reserve’s original 13,300 ha of mangroves have been converted. Iona Soulsby

Indonesia’s vast mangroves are a treasure worth saving

Mangroves, hectare for hectare, store more carbon than any other forests. But they are also among the most threatened. New projects in Indonesia show how mangroves might be restored.
The Indonesia Ulema Council issued a fatwa that says same-sex relations should be punished by death. from nito/www.shutterstock.com

Does the fatwa on homosexuals in Indonesia matter?

What are the implications for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Indonesians of an edict from the nation's top Muslim clerical body that homosexuality is a sin that should be punishable by death?
The living fossil Coelacanth, first sighted in South African waters, also lives across the Indian ocean in Indonesia. Catmando/Shutterstock

Hunting for living fossils in Indonesian waters

A new centre in Indonesia is dedicated to studying the curious and ancient Coelacanth.
Individual circumstances, including evidence of remorse and rehabilitation over the past decade, don’t matter in the cases of Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran. EPA/Made Nagi

Barry Jones: The deep bilateral hypocrisy on the death penalty

The plight of Andrew Chan and Myuan Sukumaran in Indonesia illustrates how the death penalty is always highly politicised.
A ranger looks at the skull of an elephant killed by poachers - a frequent side-effect of development projects that open up remote forests to human access. Ralph Buij

Roads to ruin: the pitfalls of the G20’s infrastructure bonanza

The G20 has pledged to spend more than US$60 trillion on new infrastructure in the next 15 years, much of which will affect pristine areas. Without a solid plan, the environmental toll could be huge.
Anti-communist groups recently attacked victims of Indonesia’s 1965 anti-communist purge, unfurling banners with violent messages. This one reads ‘Crush the PKI from the motherland!!!’. Joint Secretariat on '65

Violent anti-communism is alive and well in democratic Indonesia

Gatherings of victims of Indonesia's 1965 anti-communist purge were attacked by groups of people last week in West Sumatra and Central Java.
Greater cultural literacy – and a dash of linguistics – could go a long way to improving relations. EPA/Adi Weda

Indonesia and Australia? You’d better watch your language

Australian interests are intimately tied with those of Indonesia – how might a greater understanding of linguistics and cultural nuance help?
Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s call for Indonesia to ‘reciprocate’ revealed the ugly side of Australian aid: politics. AAP/Lukas Coch

What do Indonesia and Australia expect and get from aid?

Australian aid to Indonesia, both in the form of loans and grants, is not independent of its political and economic interests.

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