Clash in Indonesia's Aceh leaves 26 injured | world | Hindustan Times
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Clash in Indonesia's Aceh leaves 26 injured

At least 26 people have been injured when police and protesters clash on Indonesia's Sumatra island during the installation of a new local regent.

world Updated: Sep 02, 2007 11:39 IST

At least 26 people were injured when police and protesters clashed on Indonesia's Sumatra island during the installation of a new local regent, a leading daily and police said on Sunday.

The clash erupted on Saturday when about 300 protesters tried to stop the swearing-in of the regent and deputy regent of Southeast Aceh, part of the once troubled province of Aceh on Sumatra's northern tip. Police fired tear gas and water cannon to disperse the crowd.

The Jakarta Post quoted the protest leader, Nawi Sekedang, as saying the protesters opposed the pair because the new regent had yet to receive the approval of the local legislative council and the regency's Independent Elections Committee.

"About 300 people pushed to cancel the swearing-in ceremony . Suddenly some of them threw rocks at police. Six policemen were injured. We dispersed them by firing water cannon and tear gas also," Southeast Aceh police chief Tursilo told Reuters.

He said 12 people had been arrested for questioning.

Saturday's clash came after the Southeast Aceh Legislative Council speaker asked last week for the ceremony to be postponed until all legal problems surrounding the election of the pair had been resolved, the Jakarta Post said.

Resource-rich Aceh was torn by conflict for nearly 30 years before the December 2004 Tsunami devastation spurred a peace agreement between Jakarta and the Free Aceh Movement (GAM).

A former GAM rebel, Irwandi Yusuf, took over as the governor of the province this year following an election in December, further cementing the peace deal.