Police in Indonesia fired tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse demonstrators in central Jakarta, after supporters of losing presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto began setting fire to buildings and vehicles and pelted officers with rocks and burning objects.
National Police spokesman Dedi Prasetyo said protests against the final results of last month’s presidential election, which showed Prabowo losing to incumbent President Joko Widodo, turned violent late on Tuesday and continued into the early hours of Wednesday.
Police are investigating reports that at least one person was killed in the disturbances, but Dedi denied live rounds had been used.
“We are still checking, but I need to reiterate that police officers were not equipped with live bullets,” he told reporters, according to AFP.
Local media on Wednesday reported six people had been killed, citing Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan who visited city hospitals in the morning. He said 200 people had been injured. The governor’s office did not answer calls seeking comment from Al Jazeera. Nor did the police spokesman.
Earlier, he said that dozens of people had been detained.
KompasTV, an Indonesian news channel, showed protesters throwing rocks, facing off against hundreds of riot police in a neighbourhood in the centre of the capital.
Prabowo, a retired general who has been accused of human rights abuses, has claimed widespread cheating in the April 17 election but has provided no credible evidence to back up his allegations.
The legal director of his campaign team said on Tuesday that Prabowo would lodge a formal challenge to the result with the Constitutional Court.
Later on Wednesday, Indonesia’s chief security minister said social media would be partially blocked to prevent the spread of hoaxes following the violence in Jakarta.