Hope and Despair: Contemporary Indonesian Painter Mahdi Abdullah exhibits Acehnese Culture in Melbourne

2017-11-08T00:58:48Z (GMT) by Karen Thomas
For more than a century, generations of Acehnese people have suffered through conflict. The battles against Dutch occupation were particularly harsh in Aceh. This was followed by the Japanese invasion and internal conflicts that arose after World War II. Conflict raged again when Aceh's struggle for independence from Indonesia started in 1976. For decades, Gerakan Aceh Merdeka (GAM, or the Free Aceh Movement) fought against the Indonesian military, and most outsiders were prohibited from visiting the province – that is, until the more recent tragedy.