Riots in Mesuji Triggered by News of Army’s Arrival

TEMPO Interactive, Mesuji, Lampung:The riot which resulted in the burning of offices and some facilities owned by plantation company Barat Selatan Makmur Investindo (BSMI) has been allegedly triggered by news of the army’s arrival to the plantation area. “The information worried us. We consider that a call for battle,” said one of the residents who refused to reveal his identity.

According to the resident, the news spread via text messaging a day prior to the riot. “Warn everyone, the National Army is coming with 300 to 500 men for “training” at BSMI. Whether it’s real training or not, we don’t know. It may be the company’s tactic,” said the text message. Col. Amalsyah Tarmizi, the Black Garuda 043 Military Resort Command commander, when asked for confirmation, has denied about the plan to dispatch the army to BSMI plantation area. “We’ll come if the police request for security backup,” said the colonel.

NUROCHMAN ARRAZIE,20120227-386656,uk.html

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