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Indonesia asks Switzerland for more help in Suharto case

The Indonesian government has asked Switzerland for more help in tracing secret bank accounts of the ex-president Suharto. Berne has indicated that it is awaiting additional information from Jakarta about where exactly the assests are supposed to be.

The Indonesian government has asked Switzerland for more help in tracing secret bank accounts of the ex-president Suharto. Berne has indicated that it is awaiting additional information from Jakarta about where exactly the assests are supposed to be.

The daily newspaper, 'Jakarta Post', said the country's chief public prosecutor, Marzuki Darusman, had appealed to Berne for help in finding accounts Suharto might have held in Switzerland.

Indonesia is currently investigating the 79-year-old Suharto on charges of corruption, and he is suspected of depositing billions in foreign accounts during his 32 years in power.

"We are asking the Swiss government to help us find any data on whether the suspect has property there," a spokesman for the Indonesian attorney general said. In Berne, Folco Galli, a spokesman for the Swiss federal police office, said that Switzerland was waiting for supplementary information concerning the case.

This is not the first time Indonesia has urged Switzerland to assist in the judicial enquiry. Last October such a request went to the Swiss Ministry of Public Affairs. According to Swiss law, formal criminal proceedings have to be launched before legal assistance can be granted. In May 1999, the Indonesian justice minister visited Berne to discuss Swiss collaboration.

swissinfo with agencies

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