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INDONESIA: JAKARTA: ANTI SUHARTO PROTESTS

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On the first anniversary of President Suharto’s resignation, riot police fired warning shots and tear gas on Friday when thousands of protesters marched on Parliament.

The protestors, mainly students armed with sticks and rocks, demanded that former President Suharto be tried for corruption.

With the same fervor which marked their angry outcry a year ago, when the Suharto regime crumbled, students clashed with Indonesian troops on the streets of Jakarta.

It was the worst incident in the capital in months and came two days after campaigning began for crucial parliamentary elections due to take place on June 7.

Several students and security force members were injured by sticks and stones.

The violence erupted near the Parliament, where about 2,000 students and political activists headed after they were stopped from advancing on the home of Suharto,

As rain poured down, protesters pelted rows of riot police and troops with rocks, which the security forces threw back.

The protesters did the same when tear-gas canisters began raining down.

Warnings shots also were fired earlier when about 300 chanting students were kept about away from the residence of Suharto’s handpicked successor, B-J Habibie.

Habibie’s government has ordered an investigate into Suharto’s wealth, but the probe has come to nothing.

The demonstrators anger is fuelled by the fact that one year after his fall from power, Suharto has still not faced a court over allegations that he and his family pillaged billions from Indonesia’s coffers during his 32 years of autocratic rule.

Suharto has denied the allegations.

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