Suharto’s son-in-law loses post in army


LIEUTENANT-GENERAL Prabowo Subianto, son-in-law of former President Suharto, was relieved of his post as head of the Army Strategic Reserve Command (Kostrad) yesterday, senior military sources said.

They said that Lt-Gen Prabowo, one of the rising stars in the Indonesian Armed Forces (Abri), was replaced by the assistant chief of operations, Major-General Johny Lumintang.

Sources said that the three-star general, who is married to Mr Suharto’s youngest daughter Titik, will now head Abri’s Staff and Command College in Bandung.

This could not be confirmed officially immediately but sources said that he received his orders at the Abri headquarters from Army chief Subagyo Hadisiswoyo at 1 pm yesterday.

A high-ranking Abri officer said that he was “discharged of his command because of certain activities that were carried out without the approval of his superiors”.

The Abri source declined to comment on what these “activities” were.

The senior officer said that Abri chief, General Wiranto, took the decision to relieve Lt-Gen Prabowo of his post “after reviewing all the facts carefully”.

Military analysts have long believed that there have been simmering tensions between Gen Wiranto and Lt-Gen Prabowo because of attempts by the latter to discredit the moderate four-star general who represents a new wave of professionalism in Abri.

Said a source with links to Indonesian military intelligence: “Lt-Gen Prabowo has effectively been clipped of his powers with his removal from Kostrad. He can no longer command troops anymore.”

Lt-Gen Prabowo was promoted to head the 27,000-strong Kostrad earlier this year.

The source said that the head of the Special Forces (Kopassus) Muchdi, an ally of Lt-Gen Prabowo, was also relieved of his post.

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