Indonesia rock star attacks Der Spiegel

JAKARTA - An Indonesian rock star at the centre of a storm over a Nazi costume he wore in a music video supporting a presidential candidate criticised German news magazine Der Speigel for its report about him, a report said Sunday.

Ahmad Dhani, the frontman of the band Dewa 19, was criticised for wearing a copy of the jacket worn by the German paramilitary SS leader Heinrich Himmler in a music video promoting presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto.

Der Spiegel said that Mr Dhani's choice of costume was "more explosive" than his lyrics.

"They never interviewed me. Spiegel is a shoddy online news outlet because they violated journalistic principles," Mr Dhani was quoted as saying by the Detik.com news portal.

"So is Time," he said, referring to US-based Time magazine's story describing the video as "one of the worst pieces of political campaigning ever."

The video featured Mr Dhani and three finalists of Indonesian Idol singing Mr Prabowo's praises to the tune of the Queen classic We Will Rock You.

YouTube has removed the video for copyright violations after Queen guitarist Brian May said the band did not authorise it.

The one-month campaign ended Saturday for the July 9 presidential election, which pits former general Prabowo, 62 against Jakarta governor Joko Widodo, 53.

The two candidates engaged in a final debate late Saturday, trading barbs about corruption, food security and energy.

Pollsters suggested the race is too close call, despite overwhelming support for Joko on social media.

Many of Indonesia's most famous actors, singers and writers have come out in support of Joko, a heavy metal fan, on Twitter and Facebook.

"It's not a time to be politically apathetic. Let's vote for Jokowi," said Sherina Munaf, a singer who has nearly 8 million followers.

Mr Prabowo is seen as representing the old guard for his military past and family ties to the rule of dictator Suharto.

Mr Prabowo, who was married to a Suharto daughter, has been accused of human rights abuses, including the kidnappings of pro-democracy activists during the last months of Mr Suharto's rule in 1998.

He has admitted to the kidnappings but said they were necessary to protect the country.

Mr Widodo has been hailed as fresh face in politics untainted by corruption.

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