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From Rebels to Rulers and Legislators: The Political Transformation of the Free Aceh Movement (GAM) in Indonesia


  • Gunnar Stange


  • Roman Patock



On 15 August 2005, when the Republic of Indonesia and the Free Aceh Movement (Gerakan Aceh Merdeka, GAM) signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in Helsinki, Finland, it was considered yet another uncertain attempt at putting an end to Indonesia’s thirty years of conflict in its westernmost province, Aceh. After a historically unprecedented reconstruction process that followed the tsunami of December 2004 and two orderly elections in 2006/2007 and 2009, Aceh’s peace process is not only still on track, but widely considered a role model for ending protracted civil wars by means of political participation and autonomy regulations. This article reviews past developments that have led to the reconfiguration of Aceh’s political landscape and seeks to illustrate the most recent developments in GAM’s transformation from an independence movement to an Indonesian local political party.

Suggested Citation

  • Gunnar Stange & Roman Patock, 2010. "From Rebels to Rulers and Legislators: The Political Transformation of the Free Aceh Movement (GAM) in Indonesia," Journal of Current Southeast Asian Affairs, Institute of Asian Studies, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies, Hamburg, vol. 29(1), pages 95-120.
  • Handle: RePEc:gig:soaktu:v:29:y:2010:i:1:p:95-120

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Ross McLeod, 2008. "Survey Of Recent Developments," Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(2), pages 183-208.
    2. Arianto Patunru & Christian von Luebke, 2010. "Survey of recent developments," Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 46(1), pages 7-31.
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