UN human rights experts denounce Indonesia’s MotoGP tourism project in Lombok
UN human rights experts this week denounced Indonesia’s mega tourism project in Mandalika, West Nusa Tenggara (NTB), saying the project, which is closely linked to world-class MotoGP racing , “Violates human rights”.
In a report, UN Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights Olivier de Schutter said the $ 3 billion project on Lombok Island involved aggressive land grabs, forced evictions Sasak indigenous peoples, as well as intimidation and threats against human rights defenders.
The Indonesian National Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC), which oversees developments in the priority tourist area of Mandalika, has yet to pay compensation or settle land disputes, experts say.
“Farmers and fishermen were evicted from their lands and endured destruction of their homes, fields, water sources, cultural and religious sites, as the Indonesian government and ITDC prepared Mandalika to become a ‘new Bali ‘, ”Schutter mentioned.
This follows concerns raised by the Indonesian National Human Rights Commission (Komnas HAM) last year, which urged the ITDC to stop construction of the Mandalika MotoGP circuit, following reports of land disputes with local residents.
Mandalika, the seaside resort where MotoGP races will take place, is located in the central NTB regency in Lombok. The government is developing a huge tourist complex that includes motorcycle tours, parks, resorts and hotels.
Indonesia signed an agreement with Dorna Spots – the exclusive holder of commercial and television rights for MotoGP – in 2019 to host world-class motorcycle racing for five years. The original contract has since been extended to 10 years, with the first race initially scheduled for this year.