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Subject: AFP: Jordan denies granting citizenship to Suharto's son-in-law
Date: Tue, 29 Dec 1998 09:54:48 +0000
From: Tapol

Received from Joyo

Jordan denies granting citizenship to Suharto's son-in-law

JAKARTA, Dec 28 (AFP) - Jordan has denied granting citizenship to a son-in-law of former president Suharto who was dismissed from the armed forces after being implicated in the kidnapping and torture of political activists in the last months of Suharto's rule.

A statement by Jordanian ambassador Luay Khashman carried by newspapers here Monday said there was "no document in (Jordan's) ministries that showed that Prabowo was ever a recipient of Jordanian citizenship."

Prabowo, who has left the country, sent an open letter to newspapers from the Jordanian capital Amman last week, denying that he had accepted an offer of honorary Jordanian citizenship from King Hussein.

"I am grateful but I can't accept it because Indonesia does not allow dual citizenship," Prabowo said.

In the letter, the former three-star-general and commander of the elite Kopassus special forces said he was a close friend of the Jordanian royal family and was setting up in business there with ties to his brother's export- import house.

The foreign ministry had said it was ordering a probe into the citizenship offer reports.

On Wednesday last week the military trial opened of 11 members of the Kopassus special forces including seven junior officers, charged with involvement in the kidnapping and torture case.

The prosecutor argued that the defendants had acted on their own initiative in the abductions, obeying "calls of conscience" to safeguard the national interest -- an argument which raised howls of protest from human rights groups here.

The elite troops were believed involved in the kidnapping and torture of at least 23 activists, but the 11 Kopassus members are charged in only nine cases of activists who have resurfaced.

One other activist has been found dead and 13 are still missing.

Prabowo and two senior officers were disciplined by the armed forces. Prabowo was honorably discharged and the two others barred from holding an operational command within the armed forces.

The court martial is to resume on December 31.

TAPOL, the Indonesia Human Rights Campaign, 25 Plovers Way, Alton Hampshire GU34 2JJ Tel/Fax: 1420 80153 Email: Defending victims of oppression in Indonesia, East Timor, West Papua and Aceh, 1973-1998

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