Indonesia police: Stadium exit gates too small for escapees
Indonesia police say they need more space to accommodate escapees at the presidential palace
By Peter Symonds 13 October 2015
Indonesia’s government has been scrambling since the last weekend of September to evacuate the more than 400 suspects arrested on suspicion of attempting to overthrow the government.
At one stage, the police command structure had to call in the army to help evacuate three key buildings—the presidential palace and the parliament, along with the national police headquarters. However, it was soon apparent that the task could not be completed in time, and the army was called in again on Saturday, in an attempt to evacuate parliament.
This dramatic situation has created a public outrage against the police, and the government’s reaction has been to downplay the importance of the issue.
On Monday, Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo was on TV saying that the security situation was no worse than when he took office. “We are not worried,” he said. “What is happening in Jakarta is very normal.”
The following day it was revealed that there had been a second attempt at a police evacuation, although this time they were successful.
On Monday, as the police were evacuating parliament, police command staff, including the commander of the presidential palace, decided that a new entrance to the palace grounds was needed.
According to the command staff, the new entrance would be a way to allow people, including prisoners, to get out of the building. However, it took the command staff and the police a day to make the decision.
In a short time, police command staff created a new entrance, consisting of a chain link fence that is three metres high and two metres wide, with a five-metre drop on the other side.
On Tuesday, police command staff were able to move in the new entrance and create an eight-metre-high chain link fence on the side of the palace grounds facing the Presidential Palace.
According to the police command staff, they had to change the entrance to the palace grounds because they were too small