Indonesia independent - Photographs 1947-1953 > The foundation of the Republic

Cas Oorthuys - Soekarno spreaks to the delegates during a session of the Indonesian provisional parliament, the K.N.I. Poesat, Indonesia (1947)Two days after the capitulation of Japan on 15 August 1945, Sukarno and Hatta proclaimed the independence. Not until weeks later the first Allied troops arrived.

In the months after the Declaration of Independence the support for the Republic grew. Indonesian administrators took the oath of alliance, nationalist leaders set up national committees, and Republican youths organised in militias. In many towns they assumed power by means of violence. British Allied forces, who were the first to land on Java, and Dutch troops had a lot of difficulty containing the terror.

Early in 1947, when Oorthuys and Breijer arrived, Jakarta (formerly Batavia) was a divided city: one part was ruled by the Dutch, in the other part many administrative services were still in Republican hands. It was fairly quiet in the town. Struggle and exhaustion had left their marks upon its inhabitants, but they also showed revolutionary fervour and self-confidence.

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