More than 30,000 soldiers deployed to secure Indonesian election

More than 30,000 soldiers deployed to secure Indonesian election
At the ready: Soldiers sit on top of armored vehicles during a security parade in preparation for Wednesday's presidential election at the East Parking Lot in Senayan, Jakarta, on Monday.

JAKARTA - The Indonesian Army (TNI-AD) is deploying 31,370 soldiers to secure the July 9 presidential election, TNI-AD chief spokesman Brig. Gen. Andika Perkasa said on Monday.

"The order was given by Indonesian Military [TNI] Commander [Gen. Moeldoko] through a telegram on April 2," Army spokesperson Andika said as quoted by Antara news agency.

The soldiers are seconded to the National Police (Polri).

Andika said that the total soldiers were from all Military Commands (Kodam), the Army's Strategic Reserves Command (Kostrad) and the Army's Special Forces Command (Kopassus).

Separately, the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) secretary-general Tjahjo Kumolo expected the TNI and National Police to maintain their neutrality and unity.

"Let no one drag TNI and Polri to fight each other like in the early Reform era. It is time for Polri to take stern actions by arresting anyone who is involved in money politics, intimidation and transaction for C6 forms [voting invitations]," he said.

As the campaign period has ended on Saturday, candidate pairs and their campaign teams are obliged to observe the "cooling-off" period, which any kind of campaign activity is banned, from Sunday to Tuesday.

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