Tag Archives: Human Rights and Liberties

PRESS CONFERENCE: MORAL CALL FOR JUSTICE AND TRUTH BY CATHOLIC PRIESTS FROM ALL OVER PAPUA

on International Human Rights Day, December 10, 2020

VIOLENCE BREEDS NEW PROBLEMS;
DIALOGUE AND RECONCILIATION IN A DIGNIFIED WAY WIll RESOLVE CONFLICTS IN THE LAND OF PAPUA


1. INTRODUCTION
Papuans, Blessed Lands and Peoples. On February 5, 1855, Missionaries Carl Willem Ottow and Johan Gottlob Geissler set foot on the island of Mansinam – Manokwari. The sprinkling of New Change and Civilization resonated on the coast, on the slopes of mountains, in valleys, and in the jungles of all corners of the land Papua “Tanah Papua”.

In the next period of time, Protestant and Catholic Missionaries were present to greet Papuans. They preached the gospel of the kingdom of God. Papuans RECEIVE THE GOSPEL AND ARE BAPTIZED INTO CHILDREN OF GOD AS WELL AS CITIZENS OF THE CHURCH OF CHRIST, both Catholic and Protestant.

Jesus, the gospel, and the Church. The three are integrated into Papuan life. The habit of war among the tribes in Papua gradually changed into brotherhood closely. Similarly, the tradition of enrichment stopped. Papuans live peacefully as brothers.

The Missionaries brought Papuans to the Culture of Life. The Culture of Living Peacefully and Brothers in unity as children of God. That in the name of the Lord Jesus, the Son of God, there is eternal life. A life of peace, prosperity, happiness and longevity. BUT, WHAT ABOUT NOW? PAPUA’S SITUATION HAS CHANGED GREATLY AND IS DIFFERENT.

We certainly remember there is a wise sentence from Prof. JE Sahetapy in the ILC (Indonesia Lawyer Club, National TV Program) on April 22, 2012. Based on the Dutch proverb: “Al is de leugen nog zo snel, de waarheid achterhaalt haar wel”, he said: “EVEN IF THE LIE RUNS LIGHTNING FAST, ONE TIME THE TRUTH WILL DEFEAT IT”.


2. BACKGROUND OF THE APPEAL:

SEVERAL INDONESIAN BISHOPS MET THE COORDINATING MINISTER FOR POLHUKAM (POLITICS, LAW AND SECURITY), MAHFUD M.D., TO DISCUSS VIOLENCE IN PAPUA, ON 03 NOVEMBER 2020

Following the assassination of Journalist Rufinus Tigau, a Catholic Catechist in Intan Jaya-Papua Regency, the Leaders of the Catholic Church met with Indonesia’s top security official to urge the Government to ease the situation through dialogue.

The meeting took place at the residence of Mahfud MD, with the aim of discussing various problems that hit Indonesia’s easternmost province which continues to be turbulent. Attending the meeting were Bishop Agats, Mgr. Aloysius Murwito, OFM and Bishop of Amboina, Mgr. Petrus Canisius Mandagi MSC (who at that time was the Apostolic Administrator of the Archdiocese of Merauke), together with Cardinal Ignatius Suharyo Hardjoatmodjo, Chairman of the Conference of Trustees of the Church of Indonesia (KWI). Bishop Mandagi told UCA News at the time that the hour-long meeting was intended to discuss “VARIOUS ISSUES IN THE LAND OF PAPUA, ESPECIALLY THE PROBLEM OF VIOLENCE”

The Bishop of Indonesia IS CONCERNED ABOUT THE SITUATION. He said no specific cases were discussed in the meeting. Instead, the talks focused on the suffering inflicted by the violence, both on local civilians and on security forces.

It further says that “Papuans are good people. No one, including the Military, Police and Church Officers, should look down on them. MILITARY INTERVENTION only exacerbates tensions. Finally, OUR HOPE IS TO IMMEDIATELY STOP THE VIOLENCE IN THE LAND OF PAPUA” (lih. Jubi.co.id, 03 November 2020, Editor Dewi Wulandari).


• WHAT HAPPENED AFTER THAT MEETING?
ON FRIDAY 06 NOVEMBER 2020, TNI/POLRI CONTINUED THEIR OPERATIONS IN SUGAPA-INTAN JAYA- WEST PAPUA

The Ranks of Defense Command (Kogabwilhan) III ensured that TNI and POLRI forces CONTINUED LAW ENFORCEMENT OPERATIONS AGAINST ARMED CRIMINAL GROUPS (TPNPB-OPM) IN SUGAPA – INTAN JAYA – PAPUA. They said: We will not be stopped after the death of one TNI soldier on behalf of Pratu Firdaus Kurniawan who was shot by KKSB on Friday 6 November 2020 (Source Newspaper : Papua.com).

3. WE TRY TO RECORD A NUMBER OF HUMANITARIAN EVENTS THAT OCCURRED AGAINST CIVILIANS (INDIGENOUS PAPUANS AND NON-PAPUANS) IN THE LAND OF PAPUA FOR THE LAST TWO YEARS (2018-2020):

• SHOOTING OF PT. ISTAKA WORKERS ON DECEMBER 2, 2018. THERE WAS ALSO A MILITARY OPERATION IN NDUGA THAT RESULTED IN A MASSIVE COMMUNITY EVACUATION (Source: Voice of Papua Com. Voicing the voiceless, July 23, 2020)

• RACISM SPEECH: CALLING PAPUAN STUDENTS “MONKEYS”. On August 15, 2019 – two days before Indonesia’s independence day – students held a demonstration commemorating the New York Agreement (August 15, 1962) between the Netherlands and Indonesia. The demo action was initiated by AMP and FRI-WP in several cities. However, the cities of Surabaya and Malang in East Java Province were in the spotlight, because there has been racism-tinged hate speech against Papuan students. The incident has sparked a wave of protests and rallies everywhere that have caused little casualties and material losses (Source: Memoria Passions no. 33 Demands for Dignity, Papuans Punished, Theo van den Broek)

• SHOOTING OF RELIGIOUS LEADERS BY SECURITY OFFICERS FROM THE JOINT TNI-POLRI TEAM:

• Victim of Pastor JEREMIAH ZANAMBANI. The most tragic story happened on Saturday 19 September 2020. Evening, at 5:40 p.m. Pastor Jeremiah Zanambani was shot by Indonesian Military personnel in Hitadipa village, Intan Jaya (Source Jubi.co id. CNN Indonesia. Editor Edi Faisaol).
• Victim of young Catholic Church preacher, AGUSTINUS DUWITAU (23 years old). He was shot on October 7, 2020 by non-Organic TNI Member of YONIF RAIDER 400/BRAWIJAYA unit (source SUARA PAPUA, com. 8 October 2020, Author Arnold Belau)

• Victims of young Preachers of the Catholic Church, RUFINUS TIGAU In Jalai Village Sugapa-Intan Jaya District. He was shot by a joint TNI-POLRI force on Monday, October 26, 2020, at exactly 05:00 WIT. The Joint Team entered Jalai village and began conducting sweeps and shootings.

• Victims of State High School Students in Ilaga, Puncak Regency: ATANIUS MURIB (17 years old) and MALUK MURIB (17 years old). They were shot on November 21, 2020. After hearing the holiday announcement, the two of them were going on a vacation to their hometown in Agandugume District, but in the middle of the road, they were confronted and shot (Source: detik news, Saturday, Nov 21, 2020, by rfs).

• DISCLOSURE AND ARREST

• THE DISCLOSURE OF STUDENT/COMMUNITY DEMOCRATIC SPACE BY THE COMBINED TNI/POLRI TEAM. On Tuesday, October 27, 2020 in Jayapura city, there was an arrest until the shooting by the joint TNI/POLRI officers against students who participated in the Peaceful Demo of Otsus rejection Volume II. (Source: Jubi.co.id. Tanah Papua news portal No. 1. Editor, Sham Terrajana).

• THE ARREST OF MEMBERS OF THE PAPUAN PEOPLE’S ASSEMBLY (MRP) AS A MIRROR AGAINST INDIGENOUS PAPUANS. Whereas the MRP is an official State Institution as stated in Article 5 of Law No. 21/2001 on Special Autonomy for Papua Province and then further regulated through Government Regulation No. 54/2004 on MRP (Source: Law Jutice, News and Investigation Portal, Friday 20 11 2020. Editor, Ade Irmansyah).




4. WE ALSO NOTE SOME OF THE VERY TROUBLING STATEMENT OF OUR HEARTS, WHO ALWAYS LIVE PEACEFULLY WITH GOD’S PEOPLE IN THE LAND OF PAPUA:

• On Wednesday 21 October 2020 at 18.40, Pantau.com media reported that Coordinating Minister for Legal Politics and Security Mahfud DM recommended that the defense and security forces FILL EMPTY AREAS FOR SECURITY. It was revealed after receiving the results of the report of the Joint Fact Finding Team (TGPF) Intan Jaya Regency, at the Office of the Ministry of Police in Jakarta.

• On October 21, 2020 (which was updated on October 22, 2020), BBC News/Indonesia news stated that the Minister of Police also recommended the addition of troops in Papua after stating that the TGFT report showed that there was “suspected involvement of officers” in the murder of Pastor Jeremiah Zanambani in Hitadipa-Intan Jaya.


• On Thursday 29 October 2020 at 14.24 WIB, Bayu Adi Wicaksono in Viva Co.id media, reported that the TNI had prepared a Battalion of 122 Infantry Combat Troops Tombak Sakti to send to Papua. The preparation battalion came from the Military Regional Command (Kodam) I Bukit Barisan. Based on the information gathered, as many as 450 troops were prepared to carry out the operation of the RI-PNG Border security task force.


5. THE BASIS OF OUR CALL (PASTORS FROM ALL OVER PAPUA) TO SPEAK OUT TODAY, WORLD HUMAN RIGHTS DAY, DECEMBER 10th, FOR THE SAFETY OF THE PEOPLE OF GOD WE SERVE IN THE LAND OF PAPUA

• We the Priests, served in cities and in villages throughout the Land of Papua, from Sorong to Samarai. We are very close and always with God’s People, so their SORROWS are also LIKE our GRIEF. Their HOPE & ANXIETY at the same time also become our HOPE & ANXIETY (bdk. GS no. 1).
• That proximity factor, makes us always look at the facts and hear for ourselves what happened to God’s People in the field. We heard what they were talking about honestly, and all this time we recorded all the real conditions well.
• After conferring together, we, the Pastors agreed to make a joint appeal today, December 10, 2020 to coincide with World Human Rights Day. We feel called to BE A MOUTHPIECE TO VOICE THE CONSCIENCE OF THE PEOPLE ENTRUSTED BY GOD IN OUR GRAZING MISSIONS THROUGHOUT THE LAND OF PAPUA.

6. WE VOICE THE MOANS OF CONSCIENCE OF PREGNANT AND NURSING MOTHERS, SMALL CHILDREN, THE ELDERLY AND YOUNG, THE SICK, THE BLIND, THE DEAF AND THE PARALYZED, ALL THE HELPLESS. ALL OF THEM NOW LIVE IN ANXIETY AND FEAR THROUGHOUT PAPUA, ESPECIALLY IN RURAL VILLAGES

• Our first appeal is directed at the two warring sides, namely the TNI/POLRI stronghold and the TPN OPM stronghold. We ask that both parties, who are dignified Human Beings, immediately cease armed violence and open the door to dialogue in dignified dialogue that can be mediated by the State or Neutral and independent Groups. Because violence is never going to solve problems in the Land of Papua; it will instead add a million new misery and problems. Violence will give birth to new grudges and violence that kills lives. Be aware that “the salvation of human life is not at the end of the barrel of a weapon” brothers and sisters.

• Our second appeal, addressed to MR. PRESIDENT REBUBLIK INDONESIA as Commander-in-Chief, to immediately hold a meeting with the CHIEF OF POLICE & COMMANDER OF THE TNI to evaluate the impact of the addition of troops to the Land of Papua. And immediately withdraw all non-organic forces combined TNI / POLRI from all land of Papua.

• Our third appeal is directed at the MRP and DPR PAPUA – WEST PAPUA to immediately establish regulations that are more favorable to Indigenous Papuans (OAP). In our view, the formulation of contextual regulations and the value of impartiality, is a very dignified step in respecting and saving the OAP (Papuan Indigenous) that is heading towards the brink of extinction.

• Our FOURTH appeal, addressed to the FATHER OF PAPUA GOVERNOR, Lukas Enembe. We support the statement of the Administrator of the Diocese of Timika, Pastor Marthen E. Kuayo Pr, dated October 11, 2020 requesting that the Governor revoke the Recommendation of WIUPK Blok Wabu in Intan Jaya, if it is true that the Governor of Papua recommended it. Because Blok Wabu is the cause of conflict, evacuation of local communities and fatalities.

• Our FIFTH appeal, addressed to the CHAIRMAN OF THE CONFERENCE OF TRUSTEES OF THE CHURCH OF INDONESIA (KWI), Mr. Ignatius Cardinal Suharyo and all KWI members. We, pastors of Papua would like to ask: Why do the Leaders of the Indonesian Catholic Church not discuss holistically, seriously and thoroughly about the longest conflict in the Land of Papua in the annual meeting of KWI? What’s wrong with this Land of Papua? Once again we hope, long, and ask, that Mr. Cardinal and Bishops throughout Indonesia do not stay silent or seem unwilling to know the condition of the wounded humanity of God’s people in the Land of Papua, especially the Melanesian Race that is heading towards the brink of extinction. We were astonished and at the same time excluded, because we heard that KWI was so quick to express its attitude and expression of sorrow to the violent events that occurred in Lewonu – Lembantongoa – Palolo – Sigi Regency – Central Sulawesi, while the grief and anxiety and death of Papuans felt out of the attention, protection, and defense of KWI.

• Our SIXTH appeal, addressed to the EPISCOPAL CONFERENCE OF PAPUA (consisting of four Bishops and one Administrator Diocesan) also to the LEADERS OF THE ORDER / TARIKAT who work throughout the Land of Papua. We Papuan Priest long for a firm and impartial attitude towards Papuans and all others in this land who have been killed and who are being hurt. We yearn for a shepherd who is at the forefront of acting to save God’s People, as Archbishop Herman M. Munninghoff, OFM and the late Bishop John Philip Saklil, Pr. They have raised the reality of the suffering of God’s people in this Land of Papua. But now, it feels as if their spirit of struggle is lost buried with their rigid bodies in a burrow. Where are the voices of our current Leaders to address this humanitarian tragedy on Cenderawasih Earth?

• Our SEVENTH appeal, addressed to the GOVERNMENT OF INDONESIA and INVESTORS. Be aware that the land of Papua is not a vacant and no man’s land. The landowner of Papua is a Papuan who is also his heir. This land, has been clearly divided into its owners, namely the Seven Indigenous Territories, respectively Lapago, Meepago, Ha Anim, Bomberay, Domberay, Sairery and Mamta.

• Our EIGHTH appeal, addressed to THE GROUP PRONE TO TRIGGER HORIZONTAL CONFLICT: Nusantara, KNPB, Barisan Merah Putih, Bintang Kejora, Pro NKRI and Pro Papua Merdeka throughout Papua. We are all human beings who believe in God almighty and just and civilized people. Let us solve all problems in the land of Papua in dignified ways. Remind that there are differences of ideology and opinion, but let us sit together in an atmosphere of mutual respect and respect to find the right solution for peace and tranquility in this land of Papua.

• Our NINTH appeal, addressed to LOCAL GOVERNMENT LEADERS THROUGHOUT PAPUA: GOVERNORS, MAYORS, AND REGENTS. We strongly support and pray for you in leading the government in this land of Papua. You are God’s deposition to lead all human beings, people in the land of Papua to coexist peacefully, fairly, and prosperously. Look with the eyes of faith all the realities on this land! Lead this country independently and independently based on a sincere conscience without flawed intervention and intimidation from anyone, which will only undermine stability, tranquility, peace, and justice over the territory of the government you lead. We also ask for special attention to coaching for local government officials and field officers so that there is dedication of leadership and dedication so that there is a spirit of service that is responsible, sincere, and sincere for the community for the safety and welfare of many people.

• Our TENTH call, addressed to MIGRATION POLICY MAKERS. To the Central and Local Governments, we hope while reminding what we have said above, that the land of Papua is not a vacant and no man’s land. Therefore, there must be a clear policy on migration. Whether there are restrictions or even stopped the flow of migration that has occurred in a structured or unstructured to the land of Papua. These efforts should be made in anticipation of an increasingly strained and strained relationship between migrants and the OAP. At the same time minimize social frictions that resulted in the depressing and removal of OAP on its own ancestral land.




7. FINALLY

We, pastors from Papua agree and firmly offer a DIALOGUE APPROACH. This approach is a new and dignified policy to build a stable, just and peaceful and prosperous Land of Papua. At THE SAME TIME FIRMLY REJECT AND CONDEMN ACTS OF VIOLENCE ON THIS LAND.

The dialogue we offer is a COMPREHENSIVE DIALOGUE that can resolve the longest conflict in the land of Papua. This dialogue is not intended to seek out who is wrong and who is right, but rather to find the real truths that lead all parties to justice and peace in life.

In Faith and Hope, we are very confident, that Dialogue will never kill, Dialogue will never hurt, and Dialogue will never make us stupid. It is precisely when we use the wrong ways such as acts of violence that do not have humanity, then we will leave the rotten wounds of the birth and the inner. For whatever reason, every violence in the form of murder and slaughter, as well as the dispersion of man created by God, is wrong and a very violent and cruel sin.

We Are Catholic Priests from Papua:

1. P. Alberto John Bunai, Pr
2. P. Paul T. Tangdilintin, OFM
3. P. Nico Syukur Dister, OFM
4. P. Alfonsius Biru Kira, Pr
5. P. Yohanes E.G. Kayame, Pr
6. P. Bernardus Bofitwos Baru, OSA
7. P. Paul Tan, Pr
8. P. Maryanus Koba Toyo, SVD
9. P. Yanuarius M. You, Pr
10. P. Adrianus Tuturop, Pr
11. P. Vicky Bauntal, Pr
12. P. Benyamin S. Magay, Pr
13. P. YosiasiWakris, Pr
14. P. John Kandam, Pr
15. P. Izaak Bame, Pr
16. P. Yulianus Korain, Pr
17. P. Martin Homba-Homba, Pr
18. P. Daniel Gobai, Pr
19. P. Lukas Sasior, OSA
20. P. Athanasius Bame, OSA
21. P. Imanuel Air, OSA
22. P. Imanuel Tenau, Pr
23. P. Jan Pieter Fatem, OSA
24. P. Lewi Ibori, OSA
25. P. Edy Doga, OFM
26. P. Honoratus Pigai, Pr
27. P. Aloysius Daby, Pr
28. P. Yohanes B. Uttun, Pr
29. P. Philipus Sedik, OSA
30. P. Yohanes S. Sedik, OSA
31. P. AloTeniwut Sedik, OSA
32. P. Maksimilianus Dora, OFM
33. P. Petrus Fenyapwain, OFM
34. P. Alexius Ate, Pr
35. P. Floribertus Yoseph S, Pr
36. P. Agustinus Yerwuan, OFM
37. P. Cayetanus Tarong, MSC
38. P. Hilarius Salmon, Pr
39. P. Markus Malar, OSA
40. P. Medardus Puji Harsono, Pr
41. P. Mecky Mulait, Pr
42. P. Fransiskus B.V.L. Maing, Pr
43. P. Herry Lobya, OSA
44. P. Yanuarius Yelipele, Pr
45. P. Fransiskus Hilapok, Pr
46. P. H. Ngalumtila Pekey, Pr
47. P. Moses Amiset, Pr
48. P. Rudolf Renyaan, Pr
49. P. Abel Yamdua Sanam, Pr
50. P. Remigius Seran, OFM
51. P. Hubertus Aweekohabi Magay, Pr
52. P. Theo Kosi, OFM
53. P. Selpius Goo, Pr
54. P. Yohanes Klau, Pr
55. P. Stefanus Yogi, Pr
56. P. Benyamin Keiya, Pr
57. P. Felix Janggur ,OSA
58. P. Fransiskus Utii, Pr
59. P. Nikolaus Wakei, Pr
60. P. Aloysius Susilo, Pr
61. P. Petrus Lekat Plue, Pr
62. P. Alexius Fabianus, Pr
63. P. Emanuel Bili, Pr
64. P. Adi Bon, Pr
65. P. Fredy Sabu, Pr
66. P. Matius Syukur, Pr
67. P. Jermias Rumlus, Pr
68. P. Paulus Trorba, OSA
69. P. Ibrani Gwijangge, Pr
70. P. Didimus Kosy. OFM
71. P. Floridus Nadja, OSA
72. P. Adri V. Durenge, OSA
73. P. Antonius Tromp, OSA
74. P. Benediktus Jehamin, OSA
75. P. Hilarius Soro, OSA
76. P. Konradus Ngandur, OSA
77. P. Yohanes Kota, OSA
78. P. Damasus Pantur, OSA
79. P. Liborius Nong, OSA
80. P. Agustinus S. Elmas, Pr
81. P. Rufinus EPW Madai, Pr
82. P. Jems Kosay, Pr
83. P. Yohanes Sudrijanta, SJ
84. P. Krispinus Bidi, SVD
85. P. Hendrikus Hada, Pr
86. P. Paulus Wolor, Pr
87. P. Amandus Rahadat, Pr
88. P. Damianus Adii, Pr
89. P. Yan P. A. Dou, Pr
90. P. Agustinus Alua , Pr
91. P. Agustinus Tebay, Pr
92. P. Lambertus Pati, OSA
93. P. Yohanes Batlayeri, Pr
94. P. Martinus Mada Werang, OSA
95. P. Dominikus Dulione Hodo, Pr
96. P. Alexandro Rangga, OFM
97. P. Goklian P.H, OFM
98. P. Kornelis Basa Kopon, Pr
99. P. Barnabas Daryana, Pr
100. P. Bartholomeus D. Oyan, Pr
101. P. Petrus Hamsi, Pr
102. P. Karolus Kune Boruk, Pr
103. P. Yermias Lado, OFM
104. P. Modestus Teniwut, OFM
105. P. Gokmento Sitinjak OFM Cap
106. P. Juperdinan Manik, OFM Cap
107. P. Yohanes Mangguwop, Pr
108. P. Ag. EkoWidiatmono, Pr
109. P. Heronimus Lebi, OFM
110. P. Ambrosius Sala, OFM
111. P. Philipus Elosak, OFM
112. P. Bartolomeus Urobmabin, OFM
113. P. Lorens Purek, OFM
114. P. Yohanes Purnama, OFM
115. P. Fransiskus Katino, Pr
116. P. Wilibaldus Jampa, OSA
117. P. Paulus Jab Ulipi, OSA
118. P. Roni Guntur, SVD
119. P. Yohanes R. Jempormase, OSA
120. P. Ronald Sitanggan, Pr
121. P. YuvenTekege, Pr
122. P. Theo Makai, Pr.
123. P. OktovianusTaena, Pr
124. P. Yance Yogi, Pr
125. P. Sebast Maipaiwiyai, Pr
126. P. Rinto Dumatubun, Pr
127. P. Yohanes Djawa, SVD
128. P. Hubertus Henslok, SCJ
129. P. Paulus Kusworo, SCJ
130. P. Ari Wuardana, SCJ
131. P. Jhon Kore, OFM
132. P. Damianus Uropmabin, Pr
133. P. Yulius D, Pr
134. P. Kleopas S. Sondegau, Pr
135. P. Agustinus Rumsorin, Pr
136. P. Yoseph Ikikitaro, Pr
137. P. Herman Yosep Betu, Pr
138. P. Yustinus Rahangiar, Pr
139. P. Samuel O, Pr
140. P. Agustinus Yohanes Setiyono, SJ
141. P. Robertus L. Tangdilintin, Pr.
142. P. Linus Dumatubun, Pr.
143. P. Hendrikus Nahak, OFM
144. P. Norbertus B. Renyaan, OFM.
145. P. John Djonga, Pr.
146. P. Santon Tekege, Pr.
147. P. Marten Kuayo, Pr.

Police shoot farmer in Yapen

February 13,  2015

by West Papua Media

(Updated for correct date)

Early  reports have been received from West Papua Media sources of police killing on Yapen Island on Wednesday, February 11..

Police officers on patrol in Yapen, approaching the village of Saubeba, have shot dead a civilian named Faris RUMANGGITO (FR), approximately 40 years of age. FR was shot dead by police in unknown circumstances by Indonesian BRIMOB officers at 5:47AM near the KM 5 junction of the Ambaidiru – Saubeba road.

The bodies have now been brought to the village Kontiunai, in Angkaisera District, Yapen.

A farmer, Rumanggito is from the village Yobi, but he lived in the village Kontiunai.  According to local officials questioned by a WPM stringer, Yobi may have been shot by police “because they were looking for Michael Merani,” the local West Papua Revolutionary Army guerrilla commander.

More information as it becomes available.

Westpapuamedia

Papuans Behind Bars October 2014: ‘Bloody Yotefa’: police turn a blind eye to violence against indigenous Papuans

From our partners at Papuans Behind Bars, with additional reporting from West Papua Media and JPIC

17 November 2014

At the end of October 2014, there were at least 69 political prisoners in
Papuan gaols.

At least 46 members of the West Papua National Committee (Komite Nasional Papua Barat, KNPB) were arrested in Jayapura and Merauke this month for participating in peaceful demonstrations. The demonstrators were urging the Indonesian government to release two French journalists who faced trial for breaching immigration rules.

In likely reference to the Social Organisations Law (RUU Organisasi Kemasyarakatan, RUU Ormas), police claimed during the mass arrests that the KNPB is an illegal organisation as it is not registered with the Department of National Unity and Politics (Kesatuan Bangsa dan Politik, Kesbangpol) and affiliated symbols or attributes are also therefore illegal. Last June, police conducted a mass arrest in Boven Digoel under the same auspices.  Indonesian human rights group Imparsial challenged the shutting down of peaceful demonstrations in Jayapura and Merauke, stating that freedom of expression in Papua is the worst in Indonesia, particularly when it comes to the treatment of KNPB rallies. The criminalisation of peaceful demonstrations, often under the auspices of the Ormas Law, restricts democratic space and stigmatises Papuan civil society groups.

On 27 October, two French journalists, Thomas Dandois and Valentine
Bourrat, were released after 11 weeks in detention. However, Lanny Jaya
tribal leader Areki Wanimbo, who was arrested alongside the pair, still
faces charges of conspiracy to commit treason. Lawyers from the Democracy Alliance for Papua (Aliansi Demokrasi untuk Papua, ALDP) have stated that the legal process for Wanimbo has been fraught with irregularities and that his case has been handled unprofessionally. Wanimbo faces charges different to those he was first accused of, and unsuitable evidence was used to build a case against him. The decision to impose a two-and-a-half-month prison sentence on the two journalists instead of acquitting them was a harsh blow for the campaign to open access to Papua. As noted by Human Rights Watch researcher Andreas Harsono, foreign journalists face a complex system of applying for visas to Papua, which requires the approval of 18 different government agencies – a process that severely restricts journalistic access. It remains to be seen whether Indonesian president Joko Widodo will make good on his promise of opening access to Papua.

Bloody Yotefa

In our July update we raised concerns regarding an incident which has come to be known as ‘Bloody Yotefa,’ that took place on 2 July at Yotefa market in Abepura. Early reports stated that three Papuan men were killed following a police raid on a gambling den at Yotefa market.  At least four Papuan men from the Central Highlands were tortured and 40 people arrested according to a Report from the Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation Desk (Keadilan, Perdamaian dan Keutuhan Ciptaan, KPKC) of the Evangelical Christian Church (Gereja Kristen Injili, GKI). Following the raid on the market, police arrested and handed over two Papuans, including a 14-year-old boy, to a mob of non-indigenous Papuans who publicly tortured and beat them while police stood by, later continuing the job themselves at Bhayangkara Police Hospital. While police beatings, torture and killings of indigenous Papuans are not new phenomena, the public involvement of non-indigenous mobs to achieve this is a particular low point.

Bloody Yotefa challenges the government perspective that torture and killings are carried out by a rogue police in isolated cells, showing instead that these arbitrary violations are becoming social events in which the non-indigenous community can participate. This dynamic
perpetuates a culture of fear and domination in which indigenous Papuans are exposed to constant risk of public violence, even in traditionally ‘safe’ spaces such as hospitals and university campuses. Police discrimination and profiling of indigenous Papuans, especially those who come from the Central Highlands, makes them still more vulnerable to public torture, violence and arbitrary arrest.

You can read the full update here:
http://www.papuansbehindbars.org/?p=3252

Papuans Behind Bars team

Papua-Wide meeting calls for 10 year Moratorium on Plantation and Forestry Industries

From our partners at AwasMifee

Between 4th-7th November 2014, representatives of indigenous communities, environmentalists and human rights defenders from every corner of West Papua met in Jayapura to discuss problems linked to the forestry and large-scale plantation industries, which in recent years have been expanding rapidly throughout the island.

This was an important meeting, as the difficulties and expense of travel around Papua means that communities are frequently isolated to face the companies alone, even though the problems they face are remarkably similar.

With many more plantation companies set to start operations within the next few years, and timber companies still keen to harvest high-value logs, it is also vital to share the (often bitter) experiences of communities which have already seen how these industries operate, and also to formulate some common platform of demands with which to confront government and policy makers.

Participants at the event heard about the long-term injustices connected with plantations in Jayapura, Keerom and Boven Digoel, where land was taken with military backing during the Suharto dictatorship causing problems which are still not resolved. In Papua’s deep south, participants told of how they have been marginalised by plantations connected to the MIFEE agribusiness development. Others from Sorong, Nabire and Mimika, told of how they were unprepared for the problems which started unfolding as the companies moved in. Delegates from Bintuni and Wondama Bays explained how the effects of the timber industry on communities are no less destructive.

In many of these cases, the same problems could be seen to emerge time and time again: intimidation from military and police officers supporting the companies, loss of livelihood as the forest is destroyed, companies’ broken promises to bring development to communities, environmental problems such as pollution, flooding and loss of water sources. Taking all this into account, the participants agreed to call on all agencies involved in allowing these industries to address these problems.

Top of the list was a call for a 10 year moratorium into for large-scale plantation and forestry investment, during which time part violations should be resolved, and the challenge of finding a way that these industries could exist on indigenous land without disadvantaging indigenous people. Hopefully we will translate some of the testimony on this site soon, in the meantime here is the full list of recommendations:

Organisations involved in organising the event were: Yaysan Pusaka, Greenpeace Papua, SKP Jayapura, Jerat Papua, Foker LSM Papua and Jasoil Papua. A copy of this declaration in Indonesian together with a list of participants can be found at: http://pusaka.or.id/demo/assets/REKOMENDASI-TEMU-RAKYAT-ADAT-KORBAN-PAPUA-Nov-2014.pdf

RECOMMENDATIONS

Meeting of Community Victims of the Forestry and Large-scale Plantation Industries.

Dialogue on Building a Green Economy and Sustainable Development

Today, Friday the seventh of November two thousand and fourteen, in the Maranatha Convent, Waena, Jayapura,

After hearing and discussing Reports of Victims of the Forestry and Large-scale Plantation Industries from throughout the land of Papua, and also discussing various developments in development policy, we as representatives of indigenous communities from twelve Regencies or cities throughout the land of Papua, want to hereby make clear that the state has violated and ignored our human rights, by not protecting, respecting and advancing the rights of indigenous communities throughout the land of Papua, including: acts of discrimination, repression and expropriation of what rightfully belongs to indigenous people throughout Papua. These human rights violations, which have occurred between 1982 and 2014, have caused great loss for indigenous people, as their social and cultural fabric and their natural environment disappear. Because of this, we as representatives of indigenous people who have suffered because of the forestry and large-scale plantation industries, coming from twelve regencies and cities, hereby state the following:

1. To the President of the Republic of Indonesia, to issue a ten-year moratorium on forestry and large-scale plantation development throughout the land of Papua. During the moratorium period, the government would resolve the different problems and violations of indigenous communities’ rights that have already occurred, and amend policies and legislation currently in force in the land of Papua.

2. To the Governors of Papua and West Papua Provinces, to reconsider all policies concerning the granting of permits for the forestry and large-scale plantation industries which disadvantage indigenous people across the land of Papua.

3 To the Commander of Military District XVII Cenderawasih Command and the Papuan Police Chief, to discipline and take action against any members of the military and police forces who openly participate in pressurising and intimidating indigenous people that wish to defend their rights throughout the land of Papua. Also to take action against members of the forces who are either directly engaged in illegal business involving forest products, or back-up and protect others in such businessses.

4. To Bupatis and city mayors throughout the land of Papua, to end the practice of unconditionally giving out permits and recommendations in the forestry and large-scale plantation sector.

5 To the honourable members of the Papuan and West Papua People’s Assemblies (MRP), to hold a Special Dialogue with the Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry, and the Environment and Forestry Ministry, concerning making changes in policy and regulations related to forestry and large-scale plantation investment in the land of Papua, both ongoing and in the future, which would be based on indigenous peoples’ rights and the spirit of Papuan Special Autonomy.

6 To the Provincial Legislative Councils in Papua and West Papua, to form a Special Committee to conduct investigations into the violations of indigenous communities’ human rights in the land of Papua, which are a result of policies and investment activities in the forestry and large-scale plantation sector.

7 To Customary Tribal Councils throughout the land of Papua, to organise reconciliation and customary assemblies in each area to map the customary lands of each tribe/ethnic group and follow up the findings of this Meeting of Community Victims of the Forestry and Large-scale Plantation Industries.

8 http://pusaka.or.id/demo/assets/REKOMENDASI-TEMU-RAKYAT-ADAT-KORBAN-PAPUA-Nov-2014.pdf, to take an active role in reporting violations in human rights and environmental problems so they can be brought to the attention of wider society and institutions that are actively attempting to protect, respect and advance human rights at the Papuan, national and international levels.

9. Participants of the Meeting of Community Victims of the Forestry and Large-scale Plantation Industries – Dialogue on Building a Green Economy and Sustainable Development hereby declare the foundation of the Indigenous People’s Environmental Council in the Land of Papua (Dewan Lingkungan Masyarakat Adat di Tanah Papua).

These are the recommendations which have been made and agreed together, and we hope they will be heeded and implemented. May our ancestors and the Creator be with us all.

Controversy of Environmental Permit Mechanism that Sidelines Community Participation

From awasMifee

Published: September 8, 2014

On 16th August 2014, the Cenderawasih Pos newspaper displayed a notice from the Papuan Provincial Environmental Management Agency (BPLH), taking up about 10 x 20 cm of one column. It informed the papers’ readers about the Merauke Bupati (elected regency leader)’s decision (number 133/2014) which concerned an environmental permit for a timber enterprise on PT Wahana Samudera Sentosa (WSS)’s 79,006 hectare industrial forestry concession in Ngguti and Okaba districts, Merauke Regency.

The community were asked to give their suggestions, opinions and responses to this environmental permit in writing to the head of the BPLH in Papua, within a time limit of five working days from when the notice was published (12 -18 August 2014).

The government issues these environmental permits as a prerequisite that those wishing to initiate new developments must meet in order to obtain their permit to operate, and it is concerned with protecting and managing the environment. According to Government Regulation 27/2012 concerning Environmental Permits, each enterprise and/or project which needs an Environmental Impact Assessment (Amdal) or Environmental Management and Monitoring Plans (UKL-UPL), is obliged to obtain an Environmental Permit. The process consists of three stages: a) compiling the Amdal and UKL-UPL, b) evaluating the Amdal and examining the UKL-UPL, and c) requesting and being issued an environmental permit (cf. Article 2 of the regulation 27/2012)

In the case of PT WSS’s Environmental Permit (and this is also the case in general for companies operating in Papua), the government and developers have been seen to go through the steps required to obtain their environmental permit, seemingly just so they can meet the requirements of the procedure laid out in Government Regulation 27/2012. The substance of their research into the significant impacts of proposed business plans tends to lack attention to detail, as it is just based on a cursory academic study. The knowledge and participation of affected communities is ignored and tends to be pushed aside.

Diminishing the participation of indigenous communities and marginalising their indigenous knowledge takes place at each stage, from when the Amdal and UKL-UPL are compiled, through the evaluation and examination, right up to the moment the permit is issued. For example, during the Amdal compilation stage, the government provides for community participation through 1) publishing a plan of work and 2) public consultation, where the community has the right to give suggestions, opinions and responses to the plans during a period of 10 days from the announcement, which they must communicate in writing to the developer, minister, governor, bupati or mayor.

The mechanism of giving notice which relies on the media as explained above, is a way of reducing the the indigenous peoples of the interior of Papua’s opportunities for participation. The reason is they have very limited access to news media such as the Cenderawasih Pos, and do not have the luxury of radios and televisions, they do not even have electricity. How could it be possible for them to receive the notice and participate in the plans?

Establishing a time limit of ten days for suggestions and opinons could also prove difficult for Papuan indigenous people who learn from their experience and build up their knowledge over many years. Whether an individual, or the wider community, they need a long time, to read, study, understand, consult and discuss, before giving a response or opinion to any proposed development they have just heard about.

In this way, the time limit also limits the chances for local indigenous people to find out about the plans and participate in developing plans. Especially if government and developers do not provide independent and professional workers who can help the community study the development documents.

The next way in which the community are pushed out of the process is in the Amdal consultations, which only involves a few representatives of the communities and takes place in a hotel in the regency or provincial capital. In the Malind people’s social system, discussions about how to make use of the land on a wider scale have to take place collectively between communities from the four directions of the wind, from the Kondo to the Digoel rivers. Such a meeting should take place on the land itself, not in an air-conditioned meeting room with ceramic floors.

The community is forcibly introduced to the knowledge of how environmental impacts are evaluated and a new mechanism of taking decisions which is beyond their grasp. Community participation becomes merely procedural and follows the developers’ wishes. The way this process of participation and decision-making is steered off course is a clear illustration of discrimination against indigenous social systems and the limits to Papuan indigenous people’s civil and political rights.

Existing mechanisms and institutions for awarding environmental permits are not appropriate in the land of Papua. It is highly necessary to develop  mechanisms and institutions for giving permits which prioritised the authority and indigenous rights of local communities, as well as principles of justice.

Source: Pusaka http://pusaka.or.id/kontroversi-mekanisme-izin-lingkungan-menggembosi-partisipasi-masyarakat/