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In a theatre in the central Javanese city of Solo, a troupe of performers are acting out a fight scene from Hindu epic, the Mahabharata. The god Gatutkaca is dispatching some long-haired bad guys to the delight of the audience.

Around the World's Markets: JAKARTA

A DECISION by British-based Standard Chartered Bank to quit the Bank Bali deal dampened sentiment on the Jakarta exchange yesterday, especially among foreign players. The Jakarta composite index ended down 5.88 points, or 0.9 per cent, at 646.51 points.

Sporting Vernacular: 43. Badminton

BADMINTON'S WORLD Grand Prix finals finished in Jakarta yesterday - a long way from Badminton, from where the sport took its name.

The independent traveller: Going every which way but home

THOSE IN-FLIGHT maps that show where your plane is heading are useful and interesting innovations - usually. They help reconnect the traveller with the real world, removing some of the detachment that afflicts air travel and letting you know that the conurbation over which you are flying is Ulan Bator, not Uxbridge. But on a hop this week from the Australian city of Darwin to Singapore, I wondered if a little knowledge can be a disconcerting thing.

Returning hero tells Timor to forgive

JOSE RAMOS-HORTA, East Timor's de facto foreign minister and winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, returned to his home yesterday after 24 years in exile, and urged his people to forgive Indonesia for its brutal occupation of his country.

Rebel flags raised in Indonesian provinces

NEARLY 20,000 people helped raise a rebel flag in Indonesia's eastern province of Irian Jaya yesterday, as President Abdurrahman Wahid went ahead with a trip to China despite mounting separatist tension in his country.

Timor church massacre found

ONE OF the worst atrocities of the violence in East Timor was uncovered yesterday. Investigators have found the bodies of at least 25 people, including three priests, massacred in their churches by pro- Indonesia militiamen in September.

Investigators find 25 in Timor mass grave

ONE OF the worst atrocities of the violence in East Timor was uncovered yesterday. Investigators have found the bodies of at least 25 people, including three priests, massacred in their churches by pro- Indonesia militiamen in September.

Indonesian province in revolt

IN A FURTHER blow to Indonesia's crumbling national unity, more than 500,000 protesters marched in the rebellious province of Aceh yesterday, demanding a referendum on self- determination and the right to independence.

Jakarta rules out UN human rights inquiry

AS MORE atrocities by Jakarta-backed militias came to light yesterday, Indonesia agreed for the United Nations to speed up its civilian takeover of East Timor, but flatly ruled out proposals for a UN probe into human rights abuses. The rejection came after the UN Commission for Human Rights gave the go-ahead for a preliminary international investigation, which could lead to a full-scale war crimes tribunal similar to those operating for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia.

Jakarta rioters call ceasefire

STUDENTS IN the Indonesian capital Jakarta called a truce yesterday in their street war with police to pay tribute to demonstrators who died in the protests, laying floral wreaths at the feet of officers defending the parliament building.

Jakarta to put new security laws on hold

AFTER TWO days of bloody protests, the Indonesian army backed down on implementing a Draconian security Bill last night that would give it even more say in running the country. But the concession may only serve to encourage student activists who fought running battles with troops in central Jakarta throughout the day.

Butchered in blind hate on a road far from home

`Dead reporters are not romantic figures. They're broken bodies who leave behind broken hearts'

MONITOR: PEACEKEEPING IN EAST TIMOR

International comment on East Timor as UN peacekeepers move in and the Indonesia army leaves

Thousandsclash with police on Jakarta's streets

VIOLENCE FLARED in Jakarta as 10,000 demonstrators, many of them students, clashed with police backed by troops.

Thousands of students in clash with Jakarta police

VIOLENCE FLARED on the streets of Jakarta yesterday as 10,000 demonstrators, many of them students, clashed with police backed by troops, some of whom were armed with semi- automatic weapons.
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