Security Message for U.S. Citizens: Jakarta (Indonesia), Large-Scale Prayer Gathering in Central Jakarta

Indonesian media reports and government officials indicate that a number of organizations will hold a large-scale "mass prayer gathering" in central Jakarta at the National Monument (MONAS) on Friday, December 2, 2016. There is a possibility of smaller related gatherings in other cities throughout Indonesia. The Indonesian government has announced that the Indonesian National Police and military (TNI) will provide security for this event. The mass prayer event is expected to begin at 8:00a.m. and will last at least until Friday prayers end at approximately 1:00 p.m. Labor demonstrators are expected to participate in the prayers and then march to the Presidential Palace, so large crowds are likely to remain near MONAS until later in the afternoon. In Jakarta, Jalan Medan Merdeka Selatan and Timur (South and East Medan Merdeka Streets) will be closed and other road closures may take place throughout the day. Authorities expect traffic congestion and significant delays in these and nearby areas in central Jakarta. As a result, the Consular Section in Jakarta will be closed to the public on Friday, December 2, 2016. Emergency services for U.S. citizens will be available.

Even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence; and there exists the possibility that some extremist groups could take advantage of the December 2 events to incite or carry out violence. You should avoid areas of demonstrations, and exercise caution if in the vicinity of any large gatherings, protests, or demonstrations.

Source: Overseas Security Advisory Council.