Daily Archives: April 5, 2012

Perpetrators of Bloody Wamena Incident should be brought to justice

JUBI, 4 April 2012

The Aliansi Demokrasi Untuk Papua – Democratic Alliance for Papua – has called on the Indonesian government and specifically on the police force  to immediately arrest and charge  the perpetrators of the serious bloody incident  which occurred at the time of an  attack on the ammunition dump of  Kodim – district military command – 1702 in Wamena on 4 April 2003.

Cory Silva, speaking on behalf of the ALDP, said that the government should also provide a clarification about the incident.

She said that incident was a serious tragedy that led to the loss of many lives.

‘As far as we know, the government has failed to acknowledge responsibility for that incident and it has simply been swept under the carpet,’ she told journalists.

She called on Komnas HAM, the National Human Rights Commission, and the Attorney General’s Office, to provide information about any recent developments with regard to the case. It seems to us, she said, that the incident has got stuck somewhere between these two agencies.

‘We urge the government to provide clarifications with regard to any developments concerning the case. This would help explain things to the victims  and to the general public,’

Cory went on to say that the police should arrest the perpetrators and bring them before the court. ‘If at all possible, the persons behind that incident should be arrested and face justice in accordance with the law of the land.’

The deputy director of the ALDP in Jayapura, Yusman Conoras, said the state should accept responsibility for those who became political prisoners  in connection with the case, bearing in mind that they received heavy sentences. ‘Those who were held as tapols in connection with this case need special attention because of the heavy sentences they have had to serve,’ he said.

According to the available  information, the security forces rounded up six persons whose names are as follows: Kanius Murib, Enos Lokobal, Jefrai Murib, Numbunnga Telenggen, Kimanus Wenda and Michael Hesello. They were tried and convicted by the district court in Makasar. They are at present facing proceedings before the Makasar State Court. The first three were sentenced to 20 years, while the other three were given life sentences.

One of the co-defendants, Michael Hesello, fell ill and died  while he was being held in Gunung Sari Prison in Makasar. The others are at present facing proceedings at the Makasar State Court.

[Translated by TAPOL.]

KNPB denies that violence occurred during its demonstrations

Bintang Papua, 1 April, 2012
The KNPB – National Committee for West Papua– has denied allegations that violence occurred during demonstrations which it organised  recently. In response to the decision by journalists to boycott activities organised by the KNPB which was recently announced, Mako Tabuni, the chairman of the national committee of the KNPB said at a press conference that the majority of journalists who operate in Jayapura are well known to the KNPB, and when people threw things at journalists, this occurred because the supporters of the KNPB were unable to  recognise who were genuine journalists and who were not journalists but were members of the security forces in civilian dress who were posing as journalists.’We deny allegations that every time we organise demonstration, violence occurs. The truth is that when things are thrown  and people are chased as happened on 20 March, these were members of the security forces wearing civilian clothing who were posing as journalists.’

Tabuni said that the KNPB would undertake to clarify any of the incidents that occurred during the demonstration which took place on 20 March.. ‘Ever since the KNPB has undertaken to promote the aspirations of the Papuan people, nothing has been done to harm national or local journalists, although some misunderstandings did occur.. Our activists and militants always do everything they can to protect journalists in all our activities, and we deeply regret what happened during our demonstration on 20 March.’

He referred to demonstrations which the KNPB organised on 2 May and 2 August 2011 when there were allegations that violence occurred and that someone at  demonstration had  stabbed a student.He denied that this had happened. He said that they had immediately gone to the  police in Jayapura to ask about this allegation , but were referred to the police in Abepura. However none of them had produced any proof that such incident had occurred,.They also went to the hospital in Abepura to ask whether anyone who had been stabbed was being treated there, but there was no one being treated.

He said that it was very regrettable  that such a report had appeared in the media  who should be independent and neutral, and should not report something without having proof that it happened.

He also said it was very unfortunate that reports in the media about the demonstrations organised by the KNPB on 20 March had been greatly exaggerated

Meanwhile it has been announced that the KNPB  will organise a Cultural Festival on 2 April on Taman Imbi, Jayapura.

Buchtar Tabuni will be held responsible for demos calling for a referendum

Bintang Papua,
2 April 2012

Jayapura: Instead of holding one demonstration as had been planned by the the KNPB (National Committee for West Papua), they held two demonstrations in two different places. One took place in Taman Imbi while the other took place in Abepura. The deputy police chief, Brig.General Waterpauw said that they would hold Buchtar Tabuni responsible for these demonstrations. ‘The police will hold Buchtar Tabuni responsible for this because he was the co-ordinator of the demonstration held by  the KNPB which proceeded in violation of the agreement that they would only hold one demonstration in one place, in Taman Imbi,’ said Waterpauw.

He said that thousands of KNPB supporters had taken part in the demos in two places. In addition, he said, they were carrying a variety of weapons such as arrows, knives and spears, which had spread fear among the people.

Asked whether he intended to summon Tabuni, he said this was not yet clear but the matter would be attended to as quickly as possible.

The demos caused traffic jams as many main roads in the town centre were closed off.

Thousands of supporters of the KNPB held a demonstration in front of the post office in Abepura as well as near the traffic lights by the Abepura police office on Monday, 2 April. The demonstrators called for a referendum and urged the Indonesian government to recognise the Federal State of West Papua. The demonstrators also welcomed the establishment of International Parliamentarians for West Papua by Benny Wenda, a Papua who has  been living for a long time in The Netherlands. The IPWP will be formally set up in a parliament to support the Papuan struggle and for West Papua to secede from the Indonesian Republic.

[The report then goes into great detail about how the demonstrations proceeded in different parts of the city.]

Speaking to the crowds, Buchtar Tabuni said: ‘This demonstration is an action to express the KNPB’s support for the establishment of the IPWP in The Netherlands.’ He apologised to shopkeepers who had closed their shops along the roads where the demonstrations took place.

The chairman of the KNPB  also explained that  they were wearing traditional dress and carrying traditional weapons to show to other people (ie non-Papuans) that we have our own identity.

‘Today, the West Papuan people will determine their own future which is why the KNPB has held a peaceful demonstrations with our own cultural attributes and in support of the establishment of the IPWP.’ He went on to say that  the Regional People’s Parliament had set up commissions  and said that the most effective weapon of all was the strength of the West Papuan people to confront the colonial power, the state of Indonesia.

‘The  Papuan people have set up their own political institutions and have asked the government of the Netherlands to place the issue onto the agenda of the United Nations.

He said that West Papua will get its freedom and this must be recognised by the international community so that we, the Papuan people, can determine our own future on the basis of one principle: it is better for us to be struck down  in defending the people of West Papua than being struck down at the hands of Indonesia, the colonial power.

He said that West Papua had been incorporated  into the Republic of Indonesia in a process that violated international standards, in conflict with the principles of the rule of law and international human rights. The countries responsible for this were the USA, The Netherlands and Indonesia as well as the United Nations, in pursuance of their own economic and political interests.

‘This is why were firmly declare that the West Papuan people will devote all their energies to holding a referendum , to establish political institutions that  conform with the wishes of the people of West Papua and we call on the Dutch government to speedily take the issue back to the United Nations.’

[The report then gave the names of 21 local Papuan organisations (PRD) the chair-persons of which had signed the statement issued by Buchtar Tabuni and said that all the leaders of the KNPB took part in demonstration.]

Meanwhile units of the police and Brimob in armoured vehicles and armed with a variety of weapons stood on guard in various points places near the DPRP office and in Taman Imbi.

Many people left their offices for home earlier than usual and discussions were taking place between members  members of the DPRP.

Hundreds of people had blocked the roads causing big traffic jams .

[Abridged  translation by TAPOL of a very long article that appeared in Bintang Papua.]