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The BBC's Lesley Curwen
"The IMF is dissatisfied with Indonesia's progress on restructuring banks and big companies"
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Saturday, 24 February, 2001, 18:03 GMT
Borneo evacuation chaos as violence spreads

Thousands of petrified migrants have begun their escape on Indonesian naval vessels from ethnic violence in the province of Central Kalimantan in Borneo.

The first ship left the river port of Sampit heading for Java carrying more than two-thousand people.

Local officials say more than two-hundred people have been killed in a week of attacks by the indigenous Dayak population against settlers from the island of Madura. As many as twenty-four-thousand people are fleeing the violence. The BBC correspondent in Kalimantan says reinforcements have now arrived for the overwhelmed security forces in Sampit, but the authorities admit their priority is to evacuate the Madurese settlers.

Our correspondent says charred bodies in one town about one hundred kilometres north of Sampit provided gruesome evidence of the spread of the violence.The mainly Christian or animist Dayaks, the majority of the population, have a long standing conflict with the Muslim Madurese settlers.

Migrant numbers increased in Borneo as the government promoted economic opportunities, but many Dayaks did not benefit from the economic development.

They accuse the Madurese of being insensitive to their culture and traditions, which include head-hunting.

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