Kontras Challenges Indonesian Military, Spy Roles in Wake of Papuan Killings

http://pacific.scoop.co.nz/2012/06/kontras-challenges-indonesian-military-intelligence-roles-in-wake-of-papuan-killings/Pacific Scoop
June 11, 2012 Report – By Jubi and the PMC news desk

In the wake of many shootings that have occurred this month in the
West Papuan region capital of Jayapura and its environs, the human
rights group Kontras has challenged the role of the Indonesian
military and police and questioned the work of the state intelligence

The coordinator of Kontras (Commission for the Disappeared and Victims
of Violence), Olga Helena Hamadi, said the police should investigate
all the shooting incidents and reveal who was who behind them.

She said the TNI (Indonesian military), police and intelligence should
work harder on this issue.

“It is strange that all these shootings  are occurring in the heart of
the city, yet not one of the perpetrators has yet been arrested,” she

“The police should investigate these incidents. It is the duty of the
police to safeguard the security  of our citizens. It is not enough
for the police to issue statements saying that these incidents are the
work of  OTK – Orang Tak Kenal or Unidentified People.”

If the army and the police were finding it difficult to  discover who
was who are behind these shootings, civil society groups  should work
in collaboration with each other to work out a solution, she said.

The chairman of BUK (United for Justice), Peneas Lokbere, said the
police must have the confidence of the community.

“If they fail to reveal any of the forces that are behind these
incidents, they will lose the the confidence of the community,” he

Albertus, a representative of the Franciscans  Secretariat in
Jayapura, also said the police must reveal the people who were behind
these activities.

“The police are entrusted with the task of  providing security and
tranquillity for the community,” he said.

Albertus added that the shootings had created fear  and anxiety among
the people in general which makes it difficult for the community to
feel sure about their safety.

Source: Jubi – abridged translation by by the Indonesian human rights group TAPOL

SMH: Soldiers Stand Trial Over Papua Abuse

The Sydney Morning Herald
January 14, 2011

Soldiers Stand Trial Over Papua Abuse

by Toni O’Loughlin

JAKARTA: Three Indonesian soldiers who videoed a Papuan man’s
agony as they repeatedly poked a fiery stick at his genitals and
held a gun to his head have been charged with ignoring their
commander’s instructions.

Human rights activists say the video is clear evidence of human
rights abuse and that the three soldiers from Battalion 753
should face Indonesia’s Human Rights Tribunal.

But instead the soldiers are standing trial in a military court
where they have been merely charged with failing to follow
orders. Advertisement: Story continues below

The military prosecutor, Sumantri, said soldiers are supposed to
”interrogate people in a persuasive way”.

But when Second Sergeant Irwan Rizkianto, First Private Thamrin
Mahangiri and First Private Yopsen Agu ”tied up the victim’s
head into a plastic bag” then ”burn[ed] the victim’s pubic
hair”, they were disobeying orders, Mr Sumantri told the
military tribunal.

They were also disobeying orders when they recorded the attack
with a mobile phone, he said, even though one of the soldiers
claimed Sergeant Rizkianto told them they needed the
documentation to report back to their battalion commander.

While the soldiers confessed to the shocking attack, Mr Sumantri
said no assault charges were laid because ”there is no victim”.

”The victim didn’t report to us as a witness,” he said.

Reports from Papua have identified the man who was tortured as
Tunaliwor Kiwo but he has not been seen since the video was
taken last May.

Another man, Telangga Gire, also appeared in the video with a
knife placed at his throat but he is reportedly in hiding.

It is the second time in three months that video evidence of
soldiers torturing Papuans has surfaced, fuelling allegations
that the military systematically tortures members and supporters
of the Free Papua Movement.

However, Komnas HAM, Indonesia’s human rights commission,
reviewed the video and last week concluded there was no
”evidence that violence was carried out in a systematic way to
murder Papuans”.

As a result, Komnas decided not to set up an ad hoc team to
investigate these cases as gross human rights violations, the
commission said in a statement.

But Haris Azhar, the head of Kontras, an Indonesian human rights
advocacy group, said the soldiers who were now on trial were
being ”scapegoated”.

”The trial will not touch the higher ranks or commanders,” Mr
Haris said. ”We suspect that video recording is the [way they]
report their activities to the commanders.”

— with Karuni Rompies

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