Tag Archives: YouTube

JG: Officers Involved in Deadly Crackdown On Papuan Congress Slapped on Wrist

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/home/officers-involved-in-deadly-crackdown-on-papuan-congress-slapped-on-wrist/480247

Banjir Ambarita | November 23, 2011

Jayapura. The former Jayapura Police chief and seven of his subordinates were handed a token written warning on Tuesday for their role in a brutal crackdown on a peaceful gathering that led to the deaths of at least three civilians.

At a disciplinary hearing at the Papua Police headquarters, Adj. Sr. Comr. Imam Setiawan was ruled to have committed a disciplinary infraction by not prioritizing the protection of civilians.

A parallel hearing at the Jayapura Police headquarters found the seven others guilty of a similar breach. All were issued a warning letter, despite earlier findings by the National Commission for Human Rights (Komnas HAM) that the crackdown on the pro-independence Papuan People’s Congress violated a raft of basic rights.

A day after the incident on Oct. 19, six congress participants were found dead in a field near the scene and just outside the local military headquarters.

Komnas HAM had ruled that at least three of the deaths could be attributed to excessive use of force by the security forces, although it stopped short of specifically fingering the police or the military.

In his defense, Imam said his men had acted out of fear of a repeat of the clash that occurred in March 2006 between protesters and security forces at Jayapura’s Cendrawasih University that left five police officers dead.

Sr. Comr. Deddy Woeryantono, the provincial police’s head of internal affairs, said the punishment meted out to the eight officers was the “heaviest in the police force.”

“If in the next six months after receiving a warning they commit another disciplinary breach, it’s possible that their punishment could be increased,” said Deddy, who presided over the disciplinary hearings.

He declined to say how the heaviest punishment available could be made any heavier.

The other officers disciplined included Comr. Junoto, the Jayapura Police’s operations head; Adj. Comr. Laurens, the head of intelligence; Adj. Comr. Frans, the head of riot personnel; and Adj. Comr. Ridho Purba, the chief of detectives. Adj. Comr. K.R. Sawaki and First Insp. I. Simanjuntak, the North Jayapura Police chief and deputy chief, and Comr. Arie Sirait, the Abepura Police chief, completed the list.

Tuesday’s decision echoes similar cursory punishment handed down to soldiers accused of gross rights abuses. In August, three soldiers accused of killing a Papuan man were given 15 months in jail for insubordination by a military tribunal.

In January, the military was criticized internationally for handing out sentences of between eight and 10 months to three soldiers who had tortured two Papuan men, in an act caught on video and posted to YouTube.

Comprehensive Report of Human Rights Violations in Papua since 1969

Bintang Papua, 23 July 2011[Something to look forward to. TAPOL]

Jayapura: With the help of an NGO in the USA  and the European Union, ELSHAM-Papua has drawn up a comprehensive report of cases of human rights violations that have occurred in West Papua during the period since it became part of the Republic of Indonesia.

ELSHAM co-ordinator in Papua, Ferdinand Marisan S.Sos told Bintang  Papua that they had already completed their collection of data.

‘We have collected data about human rights violations in Papua from the year 1969 up to 2010,’ he said. He said that they had been doing the work since February  this year and had completed it in April.

They are now going through the process of  putting all the data together in a book. ‘We plan to produce the data in a book which we hope to publish in October this year.’

He said that the compilation had been done together with the ICTJ, the International Center of Transitional Justice, a body that has the support of the European Union.

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Komnas HAM calls for harshest punishment for killing civilian

In a statement issued today, 25 July, the Papuan branch of Komnas HAM, the National Human Rights Commission, has called on the authorities to mete out the harshest possible punishment for the member of the army who murdered the Rev. Ginderman Gire and wounded Gembala Pitinius in Tingginambut on 17 March 2011.Deputy chairman of Komnas HAM, Mathius Murib,  said he appreciated the decision of the Indonesian army to launch legal proceedings against  those who tortured and killed Rev Ginderman and wounded Gembala Pitinius. The latter man survived after being tortured. in Tingginambut, Puncak Jaya district. ‘We very much hope that the perpetrators  will be punished as harshly as possible according to the law so as to act as a deterrent, to ensure that such a crime doesn’t happen again.’

This was in connection with the forthcoming trial of the three army officers  who had committed acts of violence against two civilians

As has been reported, the trial is now under way before a military tribunal of three officers: First Sergeant  Torang Sihombing, NCO Hery Purwanto and NCO  Hasirun. The three are charged with using violence and torture according to articles 351 and 103 of the Military Code for causing the death of Ginderman Gire.

The crime againt Ginderman occuurred on 17 March 2010, At the time, First Lieutenant  Sudarman as commander of Post Illu Puncak Jaya had ordered the three accused to go on patrol in Pos Illu Post, in the Mulia area  in Puncak Jaya. The three men followed a convoy of vehicles which were transporting foodstuffs. After reaching Pintu Angin Alome, one of the drivers of the trucks reported to First Sergeant Saut Torang Sihombing that a local man named Ginderman Gire had asked for fuel. whereupon the sergeant asked why  he was asking for fuel, when another man Pitinius Kogoya also asked for fuel. When they said nothing, Sergeant Sihombing became very angry and struck Ginderman in his chest and hit Pitinus in the face.

After being struck, Ginderman said: ‘I’m not afraid of the army and I have friends up in the mountains who are well armed.’

The sergeant then handed the two men over  to another soldier, Hery Purwanto for questioning. During the questioning, the two men were beaten. Pitinus was able to escape  and jumped into a ravine. One of the soldiers fired shots into the air as a warning while Ginderman tried to grab a weapon from Hery Puwanto.  The officer fired his SS3 V-1 hitting him in the chest. The soldiers looked down and realised that the man they had shot was dead.

The soldiers then reported the incident to their  superior and were ordered to get rid of the body. The body of Ginderman was then loaded onto a truck and driven away. When they reached the Tingginambut bridge,they threw the body into the river.

JG: Low-Ranking Soldiers Indicted Over Torture, Killing in Papua’s Puncak Jaya

[The Papua Customary Council (DAP), however, disagreed with the Army’s
version of events. It said Kinderman was a local priest and had no
ties to the OPM.

“He was waiting for a delivery from Wamena, so when a convoy
approached he immediately went up to check for his package,” DAP
member Markus Haluk said. “There are thousands of innocent civilians
in Papua accused of being OPM to justify military tortures and
killings. This trial is just for show, like the previous one.”]

The Jakarta Globe
July 21, 2011

Low-Ranking Soldiers Indicted Over Torture,
Killing in Papua’s Puncak Jaya

by Banjir Ambarita

Jayapura

A military tribunal in Papua indicted three low-ranking soldiers on
Wednesday for the killing of a civilian in Puncak Jaya district last
year.

The defendants were identified as First Sgt. Saut Sihombing, Second
Pvt. Hery Purwanto and Second Pvt. Hasirun. All three serve in the
Army’s Nabire Infantry Battalion, as did four soldiers sentenced in
November for torturing two civilians in the village of Gurage in the
same district.

That incident resulted in international condemnation after a video of
the torture was posted on the online video-sharing site YouTube in
October.

Military prosecutor Capt. Jem C.H. Manibuy charged the three
defendants in this latest case with torture. They are accused of
beating and shooting to death a civilian, identified as Kinderman
Gire. The killing occurred near a military checkpoint in the village
of Illu on March 17 last year, just two weeks prior to the Gurage
incident.

The indictment says Saut, Hery and Hasirun accompanied a civilian
convoy that was delivering food supplies to Mulia, the capital of
Puncak Jaya district, around 10 hours by road from Wamena, Jayawijaya.

Kinderman, according to the indictment, stopped the convoy near Kalome
village in an attempt to extort gasoline from the driver of one of the
vehicles.

Saut disembarked from his vehicle and approached Kinderman who was
with another civilian, Pitinus Kogoya. The indictment says that
Kinderman then said, “I am not afraid of the military. I have 30
friends in the mountains and they are armed,” suggesting that
Kinderman was a member of the separatist Free Papua Movement (OPM).

Kinderman and Pitinus were then beaten while being interrogated by
Hery and Hasirun, the indictment says. Pitinus was able to escape by
jumping down an embankment.

The military tribunal was told that Kinderman tried to grab a rifle
from Hery, who reacted by firing at Kinderman. The shot hit Kinderman
in the chest, killing him instantly.

Saut said he reported the incident to his superior, Sudarmin, who told
the three not to say anything about the shooting.

The three soldiers took Kinderman’s body to their vehicle before
dumping it in a river from a bridge in Tingginambut subdistrict, the
indictment says.

The Papua Customary Council (DAP), however, disagreed with the Army’s
version of events. It said Kinderman was a local priest and had no
ties to the OPM.

“He was waiting for a delivery from Wamena, so when a convoy
approached he immediately went up to check for his package,” DAP
member Markus Haluk said. “There are thousands of innocent civilians
in Papua accused of being OPM to justify military tortures and
killings. This trial is just for show, like the previous one.”

Australia must make a stand for West Papua

Article in the Sydney Morning Herald

As YouTube evidence of Indonesian soldiers burning the genitals of the West Papuan Tunaliwor Kiwo received its 50,000th viewer, the Indonesian military (TNI) was exposed holding a cynical mock trial to try to cover up systemic violence.

Julia Gillard was red-faced. When in Indonesia with Barack Obama last month, she had praised President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono’s quick response and the coming trial. Soldiers from another, lesser ”abuse case” were then paraded and given soft sentences, while Kiwo’s torturers remain on active duty.

Despite the Australian embassy in Jakarta telling Indonesian officials of Australia’s “unhappiness with the military’s investigation”, the blatant contempt shown for Gillard and her officials creates little confidence.

Gillard bit her tongue again this week. ”The President of Indonesia,” she said, ”has made it absolutely clear he wants to see any wrongdoers brought to justice on this matter.”


Where’s the solidarity that lifted East Timor out of the geopolitical rubbish bin and into the minds of mainstream Aussies? In 1999 East Timor held a United Nations referendum, due in part to international and Australian pressure, and the Indonesian military tortured, raped and scorched its way back to Java.

In that year in West Papua I discovered the best kept secret in the Asia-Pacific region. Hiking among the highland farms of the Dani people, I heard stories of dispossession, detention, torture and murder. Yale University suggests that since the Indonesian military invaded in 1962-63, it has killed 400,000 West Papuans yet few Australians know anything about these killing fields.

I had lived and travelled on and off in Indonesia for 15 years but never heard even a whisper from West Papua. I departed shocked by the locals’ stories and with a growing suspicion that we were being lied to. The Australian government has always known what’s happening there but has chosen placation over human dignity and moral leadership.

Back in Australia, it was as if this province of 2.6 million had been erased. Why the silence? Where are the churches, students and humanitarian groups who fought for East Timor? Where are the unions who boycotted the Dutch in Indonesia and the regime in South Africa? Where are the conservatives who beat their chests after John Howard ”saved East Timor”?

History offers a clue. When General Suharto took power in Indonesia in 1965-66, he opened the floodgates to Western resource companies. Every Australian government since Menzies kowtowed to this murderous bully, partially to ward off the feared disintegration of this 18,000-island republic, but mainly to gain access to Indonesia’s vast natural resources.

The first Western company to do business with Suharto was the Freeport goldmine in West Papua. Partly owned by Australia’s Rio Tinto, it is the largest gold and copper mine in the world and Indonesia’s biggest taxpayer. Yet West Papuans live in poverty, experiencing the worst health, education and development levels in Indonesia.

Freeport’s $4 billion profit last year didn’t come easily. Dr Damien Kingsbury of Deakin University says the local Amungme people ”have been kicked out, they’ve been given a token payment and if they’ve protested, they’ve been shot”.

None of this would have been possible without Freeport’s paid protection from the TNI, which gets two-thirds of its military budget from its own private businesses. This conflict of interest is at the heart of the military’s ongoing human rights abuses. How can it serve the country while serving itself? West Papua has necessarily become a resource cash cow, a military fiefdom 3000 kilometres from Jakarta, full of tribally divided, uneducated farmers, sitting atop a new El Dorado.

Despite journalists still being banned, West Papua is no longer the secret it was in 1999. Gillard should not be placated by Indonesia’s mock trial of torturers nor train them, in the form of Kopassus. We should work with Jakarta to reform the military and open up West Papua to international scrutiny. It’s time for Australia to step up for our tortured and murdered neighbours to the north.

Charlie Hill-Smith is the writer-director of Strange Birds in Paradise – A West Papuan Story, which is nominated for four AFI Awards including best documentary.