Daily Archives: October 20, 2011

UPDATES: MORE STORIES UNRAVELLED AS INDONESIAN POLICE AND MILITARY ATTACKED THE THIRD PAPUAN PEOPLE’S CONGRESS

by EM News — last modified Oct 20, 2011 04:15 PM
Indonesian soldiers and police officers opened fire on the Third Papuan People’s Congress in Jayapura on Wedsneday (19/10) afternoon. The shooting began after the Chairman of the Congress, Furkorus Yebeisembut, declared independence from Indonesia. As communications broke down, text messages began to picture the tensions around the city.
Updates: More Stories Unravelled as Indonesian police and military attacked the Third Papuan People's Congress

Just in:

A congress participant who was recently released by the police sent this text message to West Papua Media Alerts. It has been translated from Indonesian.
Sister/brother, I’ve just left the police headquarters along with other students who have exams this morning. There are still around 800 detainees in the Jayapura Police Station at the moment. Yeboisembut was injured by the police, he is still being interrogated in a special room. Eduard Pariri, Mrs. Sroer, Kelly Pedai, Abraham Kareni, Nova Sroer, DAUD ABON (Governor of Yapen-Waropen and Mamberamo), Mr. Jacob Sroer and Elieser Awon (ex Free West Papua – OPM – member), Mama Sroer and there are still so many other activists, youths, students, petapa [community security force], mama-mama [older women], OPM and others. They are still being detained in the Jayapura Police Station’s tennis court since last night. The repressive and violent act by the authority has caused a lot of injuries to the people, some fractured their skulls, broke their legs, while others suffer serious injuries. We had to sign the letter stating we’ve committed criminal acts as they did not allow us to defend ourselves.

October 19, 2011:

Text messages were sent out earlier this week by unidentified senders, warning that there would be trouble at the gathering:

Free Papua congress. There will be slaughter of the sons and daughters of Papua, so stay at home and don’t go out until it is safe.

But thousands of people have attended the congress since Monday. The original venue for the event was the Cendrawasih University, but it was later moved to Lapangan Sakeus (Sakeus Field) in Abepura, on the outskirts of Jayapura. Papuan video activists said at least 4000 people attended the congress today.

The congress itself was not a popular idea, particularly among the armed independence groups.

The commander of the TPN/OPM (the National Liberation Army/Papuan Independence Movement), Lambert Pekikir, strongly rejected the congress. He said it would not solve the Papuan independence issue. The TPN/OPM only supports secession from the Indonesian republic

However, Papuan video activists said it was clear today that independence from Indonesia was the hot topic at the gathering. As attendees addressed the issue of independence in their speeches, several hundred military officers began to close in.

One Papuan video activist sent a text message to EngageMedia this morning:

Good morning, brother, I’m down at the field, and we’re surrounded by the military. Please pray so the congress is safe.

Then, at 3.30pm Jayapura time, he sent another one:

Brother, they’ve opened fire … to us all.

The TNI’s Regional Commander, Major General Erfi Triassunu, confirmed the declaration of independence during a press conference today: “MRP (Majelis Rakyat Papua – Papuan People’s Council) has declared the separation from Indonesia and plans to establish a new government,” he told BeritaSatu.com.

“The police officers were only trying to prevent [the situation from escalating] by firing warning shots to the air,” he said.

“No shots were fired directly to the people, hopefully there was no one hurt.”

However, sources on the ground have confirmed that people did get hurt during the panic that ensued. They also claim some people were assaulted by military personnel. Papuan video activists told EngageMedia that their cameras were confiscated, even though they were not using the devices.

Roads are currently blocked in Abepura, as are phone and internet communications.

UPDATE: Andreas Harsono, from Human Rights Watch, has told EngageMedia:

“At about 3pm Papua time, one of my contacts called me, frantically telling me that the troops had opened fire. He said he had heard about 30 shots. It is not clear whether it was fired to the air or the crowd. Over the phone I heard at least five more shots. If my hearing did not betray me, it seemed like the sound of SS-1 semi-automatic weapons…

“Another contact sent me a text message, saying that the troops had opened fire and [were] dispersing the Papuan Congress participants of various tribes throughout Papua. He estimated at least 2000 people were in the field this morning…

“I also talked to an anthropologist, a close friend of mine, who had difficulties [passing] the Abepura area. He saw police and soldiers blocking roads around Abepura. He also said that rumors had started to circulate that leaders associated [with] the Papuan Congress i.e. Forkorus Yoboisembut, the chairman of the Papuan Customary Council; Selfius Bobii, a social media activist and the organizer of the Congress; and Edison Waromi, the president of the West Papua National Authority and a former political prisoner, were about to be arrested by the police…

“They all said that the atmosphere is very tense in Jayapura. The anthropologist is worried that they might be “penyisiran” or “combing” this evening like what the Indonesian troops [did] in 2006. Abepura and Waena, where most participants stay, are quite empty now.

“My contacts are still not sure whether the shots were live bullets or blank ones. Phone connection is rather difficult with Jayapura now.”

EngageMedia will continue to monitor and update the situation. If you are interested in following up the story with the authorities, please contact:

Jayapura Police Chief – +62811950376

Regional Commander Major General Erfi Triassunu - +62811136522

AHRC: One person killed, hundreds arrested and five persons charged with rebellion at Third Papuan People’s Congress

[West Papua Media Note: at time of writing two people have been confirmed dead: Martinus Siep (Petapa security guard) ; and Melkias Kadepa.  A full list of the dead injured and arrested is being compiled and casualties are expected to rise significantly]

ASIAN HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION – URGENT APPEALS PROGRAMME

Urgent Appeal Case: AHRC-UAC-213-2011

20 October 2011
———————————————————————
INDONESIA: One person killed, hundreds arrested and five persons charged with rebellion at Third Papuan People’s Congress

ISSUES: extra-judicial killing, freedom of expression, Military, ; Police Violence, Indigenous people, Torture, Ill-treatment
———————————————————————

CAMPAIGN: End Violence in West Papua

Dear friends,

The AHRC has received information regarding the killing of at least one person and the arrest of hundreds of participants at the Third Papuan People’s Congress including Forkorus Yaboisembut and Edison Waromi on 19 October 2011 in Abepura, Papua. Concerns about the safety of the arrested persons and the need for an investigation into the killing need your urgent intervention. (photo: security forces in Papua surround the Third Papuan People’s Congress)

CASE NARRATIVE:

According to reports received by the AHRC, around 2200 members of the Indonesian army (TNI) and the mobile brigades (BRIMOB) were mobilized on the occasion of the Third Papuan People’s Congress that began on 17 October 2011, and was attended by more than 4000 indigenous Papuan participants, at the Taboria oval (Zaccheus Field) in Abepura, Papua. At least 100 members of the security forces had surrounded the area andfour police cars, two armoured vehicles from the police and a further two armoured vehicles from the mobile brigades of the police (BRIMOB) had approached close to the area. This show of force with heavy firearms was seen as a form of intimidation to the unarmed participants. Several persons were reported to have refrained from participating at the event due to this.

The event concluded at around 2pm on October 19, and a political declaration regarding the self-determination of the indigenous Papuan population was read out. Following this declaration the security forces opened fire, allegedly as warning shots only. Tear gas was used and security personnel from the army and police started dispersing the crowd and beating up numerous participants. About 300 persons were arrested and taken into custody in trucks. Around 200 of them were later released, while 100 remain detained at the Regional police headquarters (POLDA Papua). Video material is available from MetroTV.

Forkorus Yaboisembut and Edison Waromi, elected at the event as indigenous political leaders, were also arrested. Selfius Bobi (Chair of the organising committee of the congress) is currently being investigated by the police as well. According to the law, the police are required to release detained persons within 24 hours or lay charges against them. The police has so far charged 5 persons with with article 110 p.(1), 106 and 160 of the Indonesian Criminal code, rebellion/secession (maker): Forkorus Yaboisembut, Edison Gladius Waromi, August Makbrawen Sananay Kraar, Dominikus Sorabut, and Gat Wenda. Numerous Papuan political prisoners have been sentenced for up to 20 years based on this charge in the past.

At around 4pm on October 19, Mr. Kadepa, one of the Congress participants, was found dead behind the office of the military resort command (KOREM) in Abepura. Mr. Kadepa’s corpse was then taken for an autopsy to a local hospital. (photo: police troup truck at the incident location)

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:

Soon after the Second Papuan People’s Congress in 2000, the elected political representative of the indigenous Papuan community, Theys Hiyo Eluay was abducted and killed by the Indonesian military. All perpetrators of the case were later aquitted. During the Third Papuan People’s Congress the participants again questioned the legality through which Indonesia claimed sovereignty over the then decolonized former Dutch Western New Guinea in a UN administered process that was later shown to have been flawed. At the event Yaboisembut, head of the Papuan Customary Council was elected as the President and Waromi as the Prime Minister of the West Papuan Federal State. The Papuan flag was also displayed at the event. These acts were seen as secessionist activities (Indonesian: MAKAR).

In other flag raising events or gatherings where political opinion were expressed in the past many persons had been arrested and subjected to torture and ill-treatment. Foreign journalists are not given access to the Papuan provinces by Indonesia and several international groups including the Red Cross have been banned from operating in Papua.

SUGGESTED ACTION:
Please write letters to the authorities listed below asking them to intervene in the case immediately to ensure the safety of all arrested persons, an investigation into the killing and that all perpetrators are brought to justice in accordance with international human rights norms.

Please be informed that the AHRC is also sending letters to the UN Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous people, the working group on arbitrary detention, the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, and the Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, calling for their intervention into this matter.

SAMPLE LETTER:

Dear ___________,

INDONESIA: Security forces kill at least one person and arrest hundreds at Third Papuan People’s Congress

Name of victims: Forkorus Yaboisembut, Edison Gladius Waromi, August Makbrawen Sananay Kraar, Dominikus Sorabut, Gat Wenda, Selfius Bobi, Mr. Kadepa and hundreds participants of congress
Name of alleged perpetrators: members of the Indonesian army (TNI), members of the mobile brigades (BRIMOB) of Regional Police of Papua province
Date of incident: 19 October 2011
Place of incident: the Taboria oval (Zaccheus Field) in Abepura, Papua

I am writing to voice my deep concern regarding the killing of at least one person and the arrest of hundreds of participants at the Third Papuan People’s Congress including Forkorus Yaboisembut and Edison Waromi on 19 October 2011 by members of the Indonesian army (TNI) and members of the mobile brigades of the police (BRIMOB).

According to the information I have received from the AHRC, around 2200 members of the Indonesian army (TNI) and the mobile brigades (BRIMOB) were mobilized on the occasion of the Third Papuan People’s Congress that began on 17 October 2011, and was attended by more than 4000 indigenous Papuan participants, at the Taboria oval (Zaccheus Field) in Abepura, Papua. At least 100 members of the security forces had surrounded the area andfour police cars, two armoured vehicles from the police and a further two armoured vehicles from the mobile brigades of the police (BRIMOB) had approached close to the area. This show of force with heavy firearms was seen as a form of intimidation to the unarmed participants. Several persons were reported to have refrained from participating at the event due to this.

I am informed that the event concluded at around 2pm on October 19, and a political declaration regarding the self-determination of the indigenous Papuan population was read out. Following this declaration the security forces opened fire, allegedly as warning shots only. Tear gas was used and security personnel from the army and police started dispersing the crowd and beating up numerous participants. About 300 persons were arrested and taken into custody in trucks. Around 200 of them were later released, while 100 remain detained at the Regional police headquarters (POLDA Papua).

Forkorus Yaboisembut and Edison Waromi, elected at the event as indigenous political leaders, were also arrested. Selfius Bobi (Chair of the organising committee of the congress) is currently being investigated by the police as well. According to the law, the police are required to release detained persons within 24 hours or lay charges against them.

I am disturbed to learn that around 4pm on October 19, Mr. Kadepa, one of the Congress participants, was found dead behind the office of the military resort command (KOREM) in Abepura.

In light of the above information I am of the opinion that the killing of one person and the arrest of hundreds of participants at the Third Papuan People’s Congress by members of the Indonesian army (TNI) and members of the mobile brigades (BRIMOB) are a violation of the right to life and a violation of the right to freedom of expression and require and independent investigation.

I am therefore urging you to ensure that all human rights violations are investigated and that no persons remains detained or chareged solely for the peaceful expression of their political opinions. The Regional Police of Papua (POLDA Papua) must ensure a fair treatment of all arrested persons according to international norms and that no person is subjected to torture or ill-treatment.

I also urge you to ensure that an impartial and professional investigation into the death of Mr. Kadepa is conducted and all those found guilty are prosecuted according to the law.

I am looking forward to your intervention in this case.
Yours sincerely,

—————-
PLEASE SEND YOUR LETTERS TO:

1. Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono
The President of Indonesia
Jl. Veteran No. 16
Jakarta Pusat
INDONESIA
Tel: +62 21 3863777 / 3503088.
Fax: +62 21 3442223

2. Mr. Kemal Azis Stamboel
The Chairman of the First Commission of House of Representative of Indonesia
Gedung DPR RI Nusantara II, Lantai 1
Jl. Jenderal Gatot Subroto
Jakarta 10270
INDONESIA
Tel: +62 21 5715518
Fax: +62 21 5715523

3. Chairman of Third Commission of The House of Representative of Indonesia
Jl. Gatot Subroto No. 6 Jakarta
INDONESIA
Tel:+62 21 5715569
Fax: +62 21 5715566

4. Military Commander in Chief
Mabes TNI, Cilangkap,
Jakarta 13870
INDONESIA
Tel: +62 21 8459-1244 / 8459-1243
Fax: +62 21 845-6805

5. Mr. Pramono Edhie Wibowo
Army Chief of Staff
Jl. Veteran No. 5 Jakarta Pusat
INDONESIA
Tlp: +62 21 3846002 / 3456838
Fax: +62 21 3848300

6. Mr. Erfi Triassunu
Commander of Regional Military Command XVII Cendrawasih
(Kemiliteran Daerah Papua / Kodam Papua)
Jl. Polimak atas Jayapura Provinsi Papua
INDONESIA
Fax: +62 967 533763

7. General of Police Timur Pradopo
Chief of Indonesian National Police
Markas Besar Kepolisian Indonesia
Jl. Trunojoyo No. 3
Kebayoran Baru
South Jakarta 12110
INDONESIA
Tel: +62 21 3848537 / 7260306 / 7218010
Fax: +62 21 7220669
Email: info@polri.go.id

8. Head of Division of Profession and Security of Indonesian Police
Markas Besar Kepolisian Indonesia
Jl. Trunojoyo No. 3
Kebayoran Baru
South Jakarta 12110
INDONESIA
Tel: +62 21 3848537 / 7260306 / 7218010
Fax: +62 21 7220669
Email: info@polri.go.id

9. Chairman of the National Police Commission (Kompolnas)
Jl. Tirtayasa VII No. 20 Komplek PTIK Jakarta Selatan
INDONESIA
Tel: +62 21 739 2352
Fax: +62 21 739 2317

10. Head of National Commission on Human Rights of Indonesia
Jalan Latuharhary No.4-B,
Jakarta 10310
INDONESIA
Tel: +62 21 392 5227-30
Fax: +62 21 392 5227
Email: info@komnas.go.id

11. Ms. Harkristuti Harkrisnowo
General Director of Human Rights
Department of Law and Human Rights Republic of Indonesia
Jl. HR Rasuna Said Kav.6-7 Kuningan, Jakarta 12940
INDONESIA
Tel: +62 21 525 3006 / 525 3889 / 526 4280
Fax: +62 21 525 3095

12. Chief of Regional Police of Papua province
Jl. Samratulangi No. 8 Jayapura
INDONESIA
Tel: + 62 0967 531014
Fax: +62 0967 533763

13. Chief of Jayapura city district police (Polresta Jayapura)
Jl. A. Yani No.11
Jayapura
INDONESIA
Tel: +62 967 531027
Thank you.

Urgent Appeals Programme
Asian Human Rights Commission (ua@ahrc.asia)

Suspend military ties with Indonesia: Greens

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Posted on 20. Oct, 2011 by RichardDiNatale in Media ReleaseWest Papua

Australian Greens Senator and spokesperson on West Papua, Richard Di Natale, is calling on the Australian government to suspend military cooperation with Indonesia.

Last night the Indonesian military (TNI) opened fire on the third West Papuan People’s Congress, arrested community leaders and hundreds more. There are reports from a single witness of nine delegates shot while trying to flee.

“This is the latest in a series of escalating acts of repression by the Indonesian military in West Papua,” said Senator Di Natale.

“The Australian government cannot sit on its hands while these appalling acts continue to occur.

“The Minister for Defence should immediately announce a suspension of defence cooperation with Indonesia, until this matter is properly investigated and the President has committed to open dialogue with Papuan leaders.

“The government should also pressure the Indonesian authorities to allow access by foreign journalists. The best protection the Papuans can hope for is the light of international scrutiny.

“In the meantime, the Australian government should send a fact-finding mission to the area and find out for itself what is going on.”

The Greens have sought full detail on the millions of dollars spent on Australia’s defence cooperation with Indonesia in the past.

“The government also needs to come clean on support for the Indonesian military. Australians would be horrified to know their money and their government supports human rights violations in West Papua, one of our nearest neighbours.”

Media contact: Andrew Blyberg 0457 901 600

Indon Police Hunt Papuan Congress leaders

Metro TV Indonesia footage of the situation at the Congress.

Metrotvnews.com, Abepura: The situation is still tense  in the location of the Papuan Congress-3 in Abepura, Jayapura, on Wednesday(19/10) afternoon.  Police are still hunting the organizers and participants of the congress. Previous clashes between troops and police with congress participants that on its last day, today, decided the establishment of the new nation of Papua with transitional governance structure.

AWPA letter to Foreign Minister re crackdown by security forces in West Papua

Press Release   West Papua
The Australia West Papua Association (Sydney)
 
AWPA letter to Foreign Minister re crackdown by security forces in West Papua
20 October 2011
AWPA has written  to the Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd re crackdown by the security forces on delegates at the Papuan People’s Congress.
Joe Collins of AWPA said “ the Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd should urgently raise the matter with the Indonesian President asking that he control the security forces in West Papua and urging the release of all those arrested for simply holding a meeting which is their democratic right” .

Australia West Papua Association (Sydney)

PO Box 28, Spit Junction, Sydney, Australia 2088

Ph/fax 61.2.99601698  email: bunyip@bigpond.net.au

The Hon Kevin Rudd MP
Minister for Foreign Affairs
Parliament House
Canberra
ACT 2600
 
20 October 2011
Dear Mr Rudd,
I am writing to you concerning the dangerously deteriorating situation in West Papua. Yesterday, the Indonesian security forces fired on delegates who were attending a peaceful Papuan People’s Congress which was between  the 17 and 19 October. West Papua’s military commander, Major-General Erfi Triassunu, confirmed the shooting although claimed they were only warning shots. However, it is difficult at this stage to know if there are casualties but one person is believed to have been killed with others injured. Reports also indicate that hundreds have been arrested including representatives from various civil society organizations including church groups.
Panic was caused amongst the delegates when hundreds of members of the security forces, accompanied by armored vehicles   surrounded the participants at the Congress. As well as live ammunition delegates reported that the security forces also used tear gas and rifle butts on the participants during the arrests.
We urge you to urgently raise the matter with the Indonesian President asking that he control the security forces in West Papua and urging the release of all those arrested for simply holding a meeting which is their democratic right.
Yours sincerely
Joe Collins
Secretary
AWPA (Sydney)
cc.Various human rights organisations
.