NEWS FROM THE AR­CHI­PEL­AGO

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Yo­gyakarta may soon see its first sul­tana with a re­cent court rul­ing al­low­ing Sul­tan Ha­mengkubu­wono X to name his daugh­ter suc­ces­sor to the throne.

Tra­di­tion­ally, the line of suc­ces­sion is al­ways male but a re­cent Con­sti­tu­tional Court ruled in favour of a ju­di­cial re­view pe­ti­tion fight­ing a 2012 Law on Yo­gyakarta’s spe­cial sta­tus, which had in­tro­duced gen­der equal­ity to the suc­ces­sion of the Yo­gyakarta sul­tanate.

“The state shall treat men and women equally. It is in the Con­sti­tu­tion,” the sul­tan said in Yo­gyakarta on Thurs­day, as quoted by The Jakarta Post.

The sul­tan called on the com­mu­nity, as well as his fam­ily mem­bers, to sup­port the rul­ing and ac­cept the out­come.

“Like it or not, the court’s rul­ing must be ac­cepted. The law is about [ Yo­gyakarta’s] gov­er­nor any­way, and does not di­rectly cor­re­spond to kra­ton paugeran [palace reg­u­la­tions],” he said.

The pe­ti­tion had been filed to the Con­sti­tu­tional Court in September 2016 af­ter a fam­ily fall- out over the sul­tan’s de­ci­sion.

Ha­mengkubu­wono has five daugh­ters and no sons, and is­sued a royal procla­ma­tion in 2015 ap­point­ing daugh­ter GKR Mangkubumi crown princess.

The an­nounce­ment proved un­pop­u­lar in the Cen­tral Java city, with Yo­gykar­tans say­ing only a man should be a sul­tan as is tra­di­tional in the Ja­vanese Palace. Crit­ics say Ha­mengkubu­wono’s brother should be the next in line to the throne.

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