Category Archives: Video

FakFak raids hold 45 activists, schoolkids incommunicado

originally alerted via WestPapuaMedia #LiveUpdatesPapua, with additional reporting from Satu Juli

April 3, 2016

Update: 45 people have been confirmed detained without release since 8pm last night in Fakfak, mostly are primary and secondary school students.

On 2 May 2016, almost 2000 activists were arrested throughout West Papua, as they were engaging in peaceful activities to support the ULMWP’s full membership to the Melanesian Spearhead Group. Today, most of the activists have been released, after many were tortured and mistreated.

45 people have been confirmed detained without release since 8pm last night in Fakfak, mostly are primary and secondary school students. That region was to hold a peaceful march the next day, on 3 March, coinciding with the Meeting that is to be held today in London, regarding the Right to self-determination of the Papuan People.

This is a video of last night, when the Papuan activists were arrested and taken away from the ULMWP Secretariat/Fakfak Region, to the police station. More than 16 people were arrested at the time, at around 5.30 pm. That evening, others were arrested at around 8 pm. The names of the 16 arrested whom we know of, are: 

1. Apnel Hegemur
2. Siswanto Tigtigweria.
3. Ambram Remetwa.
4. Modes Komber.
5. Dany Hegemur.
6. Baron Tanggarery.
7. Yakobus Hindom.
8. Semuel Komber.
9. Simon Hindom.
10. Limce Iba.
11. Yonas Hindom.
12. Pasko Hindom.
13. Hiriet Hegemur.
14. Aron hegemur.
15. Yusub Hegemur.
16. War Hegemur.

The names of the remainder of the arrestees will be provided as soon as they are know.  More to come

New film ‘The Mahuzes’, documents conflicts between indigenous Merauke people and agribusiness

from our partners at AwasMIFEE

First Published: February 20, 2016

‘The Mahuzes’, a film about conflicts between indigenous people and agribusiness companies in Merauke, was released in Indonesian last year, and now it is available with English subtitles. It’s one of a series of documentaries produced as part of the ‘Ekspedisi Indonesia Biru’, a one-year road-trip on motorbikes by filmmakers Dandhy Laksono and Ucok Suparta, visiting diverse communities around the archipelago, often communities in struggle.

The Mahuzes follows one clan of Marind people in Muting village, where oil palm companies have started clearing land in the last few years on five massive plantations. The effects of these plantations are having a major impact – even the water from the Bian River has become undrinkable. The Mahuze clan is resisting – refusing to sell their land, erecting customary barriers to forbid the company from entering – but the company (PT Agriprima Persada Mulia) just pulls up their boundary markers. As well as these direct conflicts with the plantation companies, we see how they attempt to deal with the conflicts that inevitably arise when irresponsible companies show up with compensation money – there is an emotional peacemaking ceremony between the Marind and the neighbouring Mandodo people, but also anger in meetings that some elders in their own clan may have struck a secret deal with the company.

The Merauke Integrated Food and Energy Estate was originally launched as a massive industrial agriculture project in 2010, but it failed to reach the stated ambition in its original plan, and the cluster of oil palm plantations around Muting were some of the only developments that have actually started work in the last years. However, in May 2015 President Joko Widodo travelled to Merauke to relaunch the plan to convert over a million hectares of forest and savannah to mechanised rice production. The filmmakers also visit the site of the new rice development, revealing that once again the central government is ordering a mega project without due consideration of the local social and environmental conditions. One issue is the water – Irawan, who works for the water provider, explains that most of the water in the flat Kurik sub-district comes from rainfall. How could these conditions possibly support huge areas of irrigated rice-fields?

The Marind people’s staple food is sago, and sago palms grow abundantly in groves in the forest. As Darius Nerob explains in the film “If we plant rice, it’s 6 months before we can eat. But with sago, any day we need, we can just go and fell a tree… This tree can feed a family for half a year…. Even though the transmigrant program has existed for 33 years, Marind people have stuck with sago, they haven’t shifted to rice.”

Final Investigation into Dec 1 Wanampompi Yapen flagraising payback shootings, beatings and torture incidents (Warning: graphic images)

Investigation Report

by JPIC* Nabire, with additional reporting from West Papua Media

January 21, 2016

Apologies for the delay in publication due to translation and verification requirements

This report contains graphic images of human rights abuses in context and with actionable data

This report is part of the investigations carried out by the “Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation Desk” of the Evangelical Christian Church in Papua (Gereja Kristen Injili di Tanah Papua (GKI), into the shootings in the Yapen Island village of Wanampompi on December 1, 2015, and also sever beatings on indigenous Papuan people of the Oyehe tribe near Nabire.  The Nabire report will be published shortly.

A. Shootings in the Village of Wanampompi – Yapen, December 1, 2015

On December 1, 2015, between 03: 00 AM and  07: 30, Erick Manitori with his friends held prayers and raised the banned independence Morning Star flag in front of his own house in Wanampompi Village, Serui, Yapen.   After the flag-raising ceremony Erik Manitori and his friends then rested at his house.


Around 8 am, a joint taskforce of Army and Police came to Erik and friend at his house, and executed by gunfire four people without warning.  Erik Manitori, Yonas Manitori, Darius Andiribi, and Julian Robaha all died instantly and 8 others suffered gunshot wounds.


The  joint military-police taskforce came to Erik’s house, using two Estrada cars, one Avanza car, and one Dalmas Riot Police truck. The Joint force had stopped near the street and shouted to Eric to meet with them.  Erik and some of his friends came up to meet the joint force, but within 15-20 distance from the main street,  about 50 meters from the flagpole, Erik and his friends were shot without warning by the combined forces.

Two people were shot dead on the spot, namely, Yonas Manitori ( The Younger brother of Erik Manitori) and Darius Andiribi.  Erik Manitori and Yulianus Robaha were shot in the legs and then dragged into the police truck, whereupon they were taken to the Serui Regional General Hospital ER ( Emeregency Room). On the way to the hospital, the two men were tortured to death. Erik Manitori’s belly was cut open, and with a bayonet he was disembowelled, and his hands and feet were also broken. The two men were unable to be saved at Serui Hospital’s emergency room, and died soon after arrival.

This incident occurred with all victims being unarmed.

Eight other villagers were seriously injured by gunshot, beating and torture, but the Wanampompi villagers managed to helped the victims back to the village and were evacuated to the Randawaya Serui general hospital by civilian ambulance and truck.
The victim’s condition improved after they were evacuated off the Island to General Hospital Biak. One of the victims, Toni Runaweri, still has a bullet lodged in his skull, and is awaiting transfer for a specialist operation by surgeons in Makassar.

List of Victims

  1. Erik Manitori, Died (was tortured, disembowelled and shot);
  2. Yonas  Manitori, Died (Gunshot);
  3. Darius Andiribi, Died (Gunshot);
  4. Yulianus Robaha, Died (Shot in leg, then tortured);
  5. Toni Runaweri, Injured, Gunshot Wound, bullet passed through head and mouth;
  6. Paulinus Warrimuri, Injured, Gunshot wound in Ribs;
  7. Zakarias Torobi, Injured,  Gunshot Wound, left Calf;
  8. Daud Ayomi, Injured, Gunshot Wound on left shoulder;
  9. Filemon Ayomi, Injured, wounds,  right hand and left calf;
  10. Yance Manitori, Injured,  Wounds on Knee, left and right ankle;
  11. Alius Karimati, Injured,  Wound on right palm;
  12. Agus Manitori, Injured, Wound on left hand and left thigh, gunshot to left and right calves.

All of the 8 victims received medical treatment in the public hospital RSUD Biak, and at village
1. Paulinus Warirowai Desember 1st 2015Paulinus Warirowai Shot on his Rib

2. English Desember 1st 2015 2 and 3 Top: 2. Zakarias Torobi Wound on his left calf

Bottom 3. Daud  Ayomi Wound on his left shoulder

Top, 4. Filemon Ayomi Wound on right hand and left calfEnglish Desember 1st 2015 4 and 5

Bottom, 5.  Toni Runaweri, Gunshot Wound through mouth; X-Ray of wound in skull

Top, 6. Yance Manitori, Wound on knee, right and left ankleyance group 678 English Desember 1st 2015

7.  (middle) Alius Karimati, Wound on right calf of hand

8.  (Bottom) Agus Manitori gunshot wound on left hand and left thigh, left calf and  right calf

9. (top) Erik Manitori  Died, tortured and gunshot wounds, his stomach was torn and disembowelled with  bayonet.erick manitori English Desember 1st 2015

10. (bottom) Yulianus Robaha   Died, Tortured and Gunshot

HRW: Indonesia: End Access Restrictions to Papua

Press release

For Immediate Release
***To download video:〈=ENG&showEmbargoed=true

Indonesia: End Access Restrictions to Papua
Official Obstacles for Foreign Media and Monitors Defy Presidential Order

(Jakarta, November 11, 2015) – Indonesian authorities continue to restrict access by foreign journalists and rights monitors to Indonesia’s easternmost provinces of Papua, raising serious concerns about the government’s commitment to media freedom, Human Rights Watch said today in a new report. The restrictions defy a May 10, 2015 announcement by Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo – popularly known as Jokowi – that accredited foreign media would have unimpeded access to Papua.

“Government access restrictions have for far too long made Papua Indonesia’s ‘forbidden island’ for foreign media and rights monitors,” said Phelim Kine, deputy Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “Blocking media access on overbroad ‘security’ grounds deters foreign news reporting about Papua, raising troubling questions about what the Indonesian government might be trying to hide there.”

The 75-page report, “Something to Hide?: Indonesia’s Restrictions on Media Freedom and Rights Monitoring in Papua,” documents the government’s role in obstructing access to the provinces of Papua and West Papua (collectively referred to as “Papua”), including government backlash since Jokowi’s announcement.

The decades-old access restrictions on Papua are rooted in government suspicion of the motives of foreign nationals in a region still troubled by widespread corruption, environmental degradation, public dissatisfaction with Jakarta, and a small pro-independence insurgency.

Human Rights Watch interviewed 107 journalists, editors, publishers, and representatives of domestic and international nongovernmental organizations for the report. Foreign correspondents describe an opaque and unpredictable permit application process in which they often never received a final response. Many have waited fruitlessly for months – and in some cases years – for approval.

Jokowi’s May 10 announcement has faced strong resistance by some senior government and security forces officials, Human Rights Watch said. The government has also not followed that announcement with a specific written directive, which opened space for non-compliance by state agencies and security forces opposed to loosening restrictions on foreign observer access to Papua. Various senior officials have since publicly contradicted the president’s statement. Even the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which has announced that it has “liquidated” the 18-agency “Clearing House” that previously was used to vet journalists, has confirmed that prior police permission is still required for foreign media access to Papua. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is in some cases also continuing to ask some journalists seeking to travel to Papua to provide, in advance, details of their likely sources and dates of travel.

Foreign correspondents have reported mixed results from their efforts to take advantage of the announced loosening of Papua access restrictions. For instance, after Jokowi’s announcement, the Indonesian embassy in Bangkok processed and granted in just 15 days a Papua reporting visa for Cyril Payen, a Bangkok-based correspondent for France 24 television. The embassy also assured him that he was not obligated to have any check-ins with police or immigration officials while in Papua. “Whether I was lucky or not, I don’t know,” Payen said. “They really opened up.”

However, a Jakarta-based foreign correspondent showed Human Rights Watch a copy of correspondence with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs from July 2015 in which a ministry official listed both a surat jalan, or travel permit, from the National Police’s Security Intelligence Agency, as well as a “letter of notification” specifying the journalist’s “purpose, time and places of coverage in Papua,” as prerequisites for access to Papua.

Foreign journalists who ultimately are granted Papua access permits often face surveillance and harassment after arrival in Papua. Several said that they were required to have an official “minder” from the State Intelligence Agency (Badan Intelijen Negara, BIN) for the full duration of their visits, significantly limiting their ability to report on issues deemed sensitive.

“President Jokowi needs to bridge the gap between rhetoric and reality by putting the guarantee of unimpeded foreign media access to Papua in writing,” Kine said. “He should make it clear to government officials and security forces alike that obstructing journalists is unacceptable in Papua and anywhere else in Indonesia.”

Indonesian journalists – particularly ethnic Papuans – are also vulnerable to restrictions on media freedom in Papua, Human Rights Watch said. Reporting on corruption and land grabs can be dangerous anywhere in Indonesia, but national and local journalists told Human Rights Watch that those dangers are magnified in Papua. In addition, journalists there face harassment, intimidation, and at times even violence from officials, members of the public, and pro-independence forces when they report on sensitive political topics and human rights abuses.

Journalists in Papua say they routinely self-censor to avoid reprisals for their reporting. That environment of fear and distrust is increased by the security forces’ longstanding and documented practice of paying some journalists to be informers and even deploying agents to work undercover in newsrooms as journalists. These practices are carried out both to minimize negative coverage and to encourage positive reporting about the political situation, and they generate distrust among journalists.

Representatives of international nongovernmental organizations, United Nations experts, and foreign academics have also faced official obstacles to visiting Papua. Since 2009, the International Committee for the Red Cross, the Dutch development organization Cordaid, and the Peace Brigades International have all limited or closed their Papua-based operations due to pressures from the Indonesian government.

In 2013, the Indonesian government blocked a proposed visit by Frank La Rue, then the UN special rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression. Diplomatic sources in Geneva told La Rue that the Indonesian government froze his requested visit due to his inclusion of Papua in his proposed itinerary. “[The Indonesian mission in Geneva] asked what areas I want to go to [and] I said Jakarta and bigger places like Bali, but for me, I said, it was very important to visit Aceh and Papua,” La Rue told Human Rights Watch. “They said ‘Great, we’ll get back to you.’ What it meant was that they postponed the dates and put the trip off indefinitely.”

“It’s clear from our research that removing access restrictions is not a silver bullet to resolve Papua’s deep-seated problems or dispel the suspicions of Indonesian officials toward foreign media and other observers,” Kine said. “But greater transparency and access are essential elements of a rights-respecting future for Papua to throw sunshine on abuses of power that for too long have remained hidden from view.”

For accounts from the report, please see below.

“Something to Hide?: Indonesia’s Restrictions on Media Freedom and Rights Monitoring in Papua” is available at:

For more Human Rights Watch reporting on Indonesia, please visit:

For more information, please contact:
In Jakarta, Andreas Harsono (English, Indonesian): +62-815-950-9000 (mobile); or
In Jakarta, Phelim Kine (English, Mandarin): +62-812 10877314 (mobile) or +1-212-810-0469 (US mobile); or Twitter: @PhelimKine
In San Francisco, Brad Adams (English): +1 347-463-3531 (mobile); or
In Sydney, Elaine Pearson (English): +61-400-505-186 (mobile); or Twitter: @pearsonelaine
In Washington, DC, John Sifton (English): +1-646-479-2499 (mobile); or Twitter: @johnsifton

Accounts from “Something to Hide?”

Rohan Redheya, a Dutch freelance photojournalist who applied in The Hague for a journalist visa to Papua in July 2014, said that although the Indonesian embassy informed him that the approval process was “around two weeks,” the embassy never responded to his application. “I know many journalists who got ignored [by Indonesian visa issuance offices], and they simply never heard something again [after submitting a Papua access application].”

“The Clearing House system of consensus voting means any one person has veto power, which generally means that the opinion of the most paranoid person in the meeting carries the day. These restrictions fuel all manner of speculation about Papua: the notion that the Indonesian government has ‘something to hide’ finds purchase. But the Indonesian government finds itself in the illogical position where they hear of inflammatory reporting and this actually makes them impose restrictions, and then those restrictions prevent good journalists from writing of the complexities of the place.”
– Bobby Anderson, a social development specialist and researcher who worked in Papua from 2010 to 2015, describing the government’s “Clearing House” screening of foreign journalists seeking to report from Papua.

Marie Dhumieres, a French journalist, received a police permit to go to Papua in September 2015. A week later the police arrested and questioned three Papuan activists whom she interviewed. She published this tweet to President Jokowi, and the activists were soon released: “So Mr @jokowi, foreign journalists are free to work anywhere in Papua but the people we interview get arrested after we leave?”

“If you read all the news reports in all newspapers in Manokwari [in Papua], you will see that their sources are almost all, almost 100 percent, government officials. Their sources are always government officials, police officers, or military officers.”
– Agusta Bunay, a Papua Barat TV presenter, on self-censorship among journalists fearful of possible reprisals for independent reporting.

Thousands of students rally to reject Otsus Plus and provincial division

By West Papua Media editors, with local stringers

November 5, 2013

Thousands of Papuan university and high school students led demonstrations in Jayapura on November 4, firmly rejecting attempts by Jakarta to impose the revived “new, improved” version of the failed Special Autonomy package, named “Otsus Plus”.

A coalition of student organizations, collectively known as ‘Students, Youth and People’s Movement’ (Gerakan Mahasiswa, Pemuda dan Rakyat Papua (GempaR Papua) –  the acronym GempaR literally translates as “Unarmed Insurrection” or “Uproar”), also called the actions to reject Jakarta’s latest plans to divide Papua into 33 districts and three further provinces.  The movement has been started by students from seven different high schools, technical colleges and universities in Jayapura, including Cenderawasih University, UMEL MANDIRI, STIKOM, STT GKI I.S.KIJNE and the opposition to the imposition of Special Autonomy Plus.  The rally was subject to several threats of violence from Indonesian security forces, who routinely deem all gatherings on peaceful Papuan aspirations as subversive and treasonous, according to rally sources.

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The planned administrative divisions of Papuan land and districts under Otsus Plus have been widely interpreted as a colonial act by most Papuan civil society groups, according to Papuan observers, and seen as a covert method of further increasing the massive militarisation of Papua.  Each new district automatically gains its own military and policy company (150 men for each), and each further province each gains their own battalions of Military (1500 men) and Police (1200 men), further adding to the estimated 45,000 troops in Papua, the most militarised area under Indonesian occupation.

“Special Autonomy ‘Plus’ will not change (the mind of) Papuans.  Special Autonomy Plus is not a solution for indigenous Papuans. We firmly reject the plan for Autonomy Plus in Papua and West Papua, we reject it, Autonomy Plus and the New Re-districting are the same (still) killing Papuan people, not the solution to prosperity ” said Hendrik Koroto, Demonstration Coordinator and student at the Faculty of Engineering.

As is standard with any demonstration in Papua, the Indonesian police attempted at least twice to violently prevent the students from peacefully continuing on the march, shadowing the gathering with several hundred heavily armed security personnel.  The notoriously hardline Jayapura Deputy Police Chief Kiki Kurnia, again confronted the marchers in an effort to disperse them, threatening the use of heavy force on the students with a display of hardware including heavily armed police, water cannon and Barrucuda armoured assault vehicles. Intense negotiations took place for almost 15-20 minutes between organisers and Senior Police However, Jayapura Police Chief Alfred Papare agreed to allow marchers to continue their march using one lane to allow traffic to pass.

Whilst one group was negotiating with police, a large number of students unexpectedly took to the road, and several waves of students began to march on the Governor’s office, holding hands and neighbours with a tight protective formation.    Police dragged barbed wire in front of the Governor’s office and blocked the main entrance with 5 police trucks, and several other vehicles, The student and civil society gathering then occupied the forecourt of the Governor’s office for over two hours, during which time Governor Enembe agreed to meet a delegation from the student representatives.  No arrests were reported but threats were allegedly made against keynote speakers and rally organisers, according to witnesses who spoke with West Papua Media stringers.