Skip to content

Nearly 120 Arrested Day, Steven Itlay yet Trial

July 27, 2016

Hampir 120 Hari Ditahan, Steven Itlay Belum Disidangkan | Suara Papua
JAYAPURA,— Steven Itlay, ketua Komite Nasional Papua Barat (KNPB) wilayah Timika yang ditangkap dan ditahan sejak tanggal 6 April 2016 di Timika oleh aparat kepolisian setempat belum juga disidangkan hingga saat ini. Steven ditangkap bersama dengan Yus Wenda pada hari yang sama. Steven dituduh melakukan makar dan penghasutan yang diancam dengan pasal 160 KUHP. …

Nearly 120 Arrested Day, Steven Itlay yet Trial
Author Arnold Belau -July 26, 2016

Steven Itlay and Yus Wenda in Mimika district police custody. (Photo: Doc KNPB Timika region)

JAYAPURA,– Steven Itlay, chairman of the West Papua National Committee (KNPB) Timika region were arrested and detained since April 6, 2016 Timika by the local police had not tried until now.

Steven was arrested along with Yus Wenda on the same day. Steven accused of rebellion and sedition punishable by article 160 of the Criminal Code.

Gustaf Kawer, attorney Steven and Yus Wenda to said Wenda Yus cases were tried. And on July 27 will be hearing demands. But for Stven, the case has not been tried.

"For Steven Itlay was incomplete. So until sekrang process is still in the police and untried. Previous police already bestowed the file to the prosecutor. But Attorney restore the file because it is less complete. While Wenda Yus were tried his case. Tomorrow (July 27, 2016) scheduled to hear the prosecution, "said Kawer to in Jayapura, Tuesday (07/26/2016).

According Kawer, in the case of Steven Itlay, police should immediately search for evidence and complete the file. In order poroses trial be held. Because of the period of detention in police custody Stven been almost 120 days.

"Yeah, it was incomplete so it has been returned to the police to be equipped. I think if the allegations of treason and sedition are not strong proof is supposed to police meneribitkan Steven SP3 to stop the case. Up to this day, nearly 120 days. And it could be free by law if passed 120 days, "he said.

Kawer also said, now there are two more aktivit KNPB Timika region who have been arrested and detained since July 12, 2016 which is Yanto Awerkion and Sem Ukago.

"Now they are being held in Mako Brimob Timika treason ayng charged with article 160 of the Criminal Code and the Criminal Code article 160 incitement," he said.

KNPB activists of the Timika region, Soon Wenda, when contacted say the same thing. For the case of Steven untried. But for Yus Wenda case has been heard.

"If for Steven untried. Until now still being detained at the police. As for Yus were tried and tomorrow will be hearing the demands, "he said.

According to Wenda, two KNPB activists detained since July 12, 2016, it doubted the health of two activists in police custody.

"They do not eat well. Drinking water alone is not considered properly. Yet they have prisoners of health and others should be guaranteed by the state. So we very much doubt their health in custody, "he said.

Meanwhile, not long ago, the Papua Police Public Relations Head, Patrige warin to the media in Jayapura, said the case had reached the stage of the transfer of files.

"Steven is still being held in Mimika district police. Steven’s case is already in phase one. The files have been handed over to the prosecutor. The beam delivery phase one already done. However, the prosecutor requested that complements some of the files again. so that it is currently being equipped, "said Renwari in Jayapura.

Announcers: Arnold Belau

Stop Military business and respect the rights of indigenous Papuans.

July 22, 2016

Translation of a Press Release from a Coalition of Civil Society

On 16th July 2016 soldiers from the sub-district military command in
Muting, Merauke Regency, came to look for Agustinus Dayo Mahuze, the
chair of the Mahuze clan in Muting village, at his house. Their
intention was to invite him to meet with the bosses of oil palm company
PT Agriprima Cipta Persada (ACP) at the plantation site, and also to
deliver a notice signed by the chair of the Kartika Setya Jaya
co-operative, a military business linked to the District Military Comand
1707 in Merauke. The letter was dated 11th July 2016 and with reference
number 8/16/VII/2016, and it gave notice of a permit of a work contract
to clear land for oil palm in PT ACP’s concession..

The soldiers from the sub-district military command met Agustinus Dayo
Mahuze away from his house, on the road towards Mbilanggo village, that
afternoon, and stated the purpose of their visit. When the military
officers told Agustinus Dayo about the plans between the co-operative
and the company he felt threatened, afraid and anxious.
PT ACP’s has often involved the military and police in support of its
business interests, and they have participated in activities related to
obtaining the right to use land and in clearing land. This work has been
accompanied by intimidation and threats of violence, generating
nervousness and tension between the local community and the company,
government and police and military personnel. Evidence for this are the
letters the community repeatedly sent to the government, the police and
military and the National Human Rights Commission between January and
July 2015, to which they received no meaningful response.

Before that, the community had already made their feelings clear to the
government and company by erecting notices around their ancestral land
that read “the greater Mahuze clan’s land is not to be used for oil
palm”. The community are also hoping to resolve the problem of a few
members of the clan who have yet to repay money which had been given to
a them as land compensation and which is being considered as proof of
the transfer of land title, despite the fact that the clan members who
accepted it did so without the general agreement of the whole greater
Mahuze clan.

The involvement of the state security apparatus in providing security
for PT ACP’s business interests, and even taking a direct role in the
enterprise by clearing company land which is still disputed, and the way
this creates a feeling amongst the community that they are not safe and
facing injustice, represents a violation of the constitution and the
law. The actions of these military personnel are also in contradiction
to the military’s national commander to reform military institutions,
including placing curbs on military businesses.

Because of this, we demand:

(1) The Coordinating Minister for Law and Human Rights, National
Military Commander and Chief of Police should put a halt to military
business, in which the military provides security for or expedites
corporate business activities in ways which violate the law and do not
support local communities;

(2) The National Military Commander and Police Chief should give harsh
penalties to police or military personnel found to be involved in such
businesses which lie outside their institutional remit and cause anxiety
in local communities;

(3) The Agriculture Minister and Bupati of Merauke Regency should
undertake a social and environmental audit, and a review of permits for
work being carried out by oil palm company PT Agriprima Cipta Persada in
Muting, Merauke.

We support reforms police and military institutions in such a way that
they can provide protection and service for citizens, and we also hope
that all parties will show respect for the rights of Papuan indigenous

Jakarta 22 July 2016

Coalition of Civil Society Organisations
PUSAKA, Yayasan Satu Keadilan, ELSAM, Konsorsium Pembaruan Agraria, SKP
Keuskupan Merauke, SKP KC Fransiskan Jayapura, LBH Jakarta, Perkumpulan
JUBI, debtwatch Indonesia, Epistema Institute, GRAIN International,
Sekretariat Bina Desa, Koalisi Rakyat untuk Keadilan Perikanan,
Indonesian Human Rights Committee for Social Justice, WALHI, Perkumpulan
Bantuan Hukum Kalimantan, Institut Global Justice, Solidaritas
Perempuan, SAMPAN Kalimantan, HUMA, JKMA Aceh, JERAT Papua, Yayasan Anak
Dusun Papua, AURIGA, Institute Ecosoc, KONTRAS, Yayasan Lembaga Bantuan
Hukum Indonesia, GARDA Papua, FIM Papua. Individual supporters: Rahma
Mary, Idham Arsyad, Dede Shineba, Budi Hernawan, Teguh Surya.

Indonesian police under fire over arrest of Papuan students, racial abuse

July 22, 2016

Subject: Indonesian police under fire over arrest of Papuan students, racial abuse

Indonesian police under fire over arrest of Papuan students, racial abuse

By PMC Editor
July 21, 2016

Jefry Wenda, coordinator of a Papuan students group covering Java and Bali … the Papuan students in Yogyakarta have been left traumatised by police behavior. Image: Ryan Dagur/UCA

By Ryan Dagur in in Jakarta

Indonesian Church officials and activists have accused police in Yogyakarta of racism and using excessive force after six Papuan students were arrested for singing Papuan songs in their college dormitory.

“Police officers must be fair. They must protect Papuan people too,” Father Paulus Christian Siswantoko, executive secretary of the Indonesian bishops’ Commission for Justice, Peace and Pastoral for Migrant-Itinerant People, said.

“The government has the task to protect all citizens and disregard their ethnic background,” he said.

Police say they surrounded the dormitory belonging to Yogyakarta’s College of Community Development on July 15 to prevent a number of Papuan students from attending a banned rally organised by the People’s Union for West Papua Freedom.

The rally was aimed at supporting a bid by the Papuan nationalist group, the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP), to join the Melanesian Spearhead Group.

The group is an intergovernmental organisation comprising Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu, as well as the Kanak Socialist National Liberation Front, a political party from New Caledonia. The ULMWP currently has observer status.

The Papuan students said they initially planned to hold the rally in the city center, but decided instead to sing some Papauan songs at the dormitory after organisers failed to obtain a rally permit from local police.

Tear gas
Police allegedly used tear gas on the students before arresting them.

During the arrest it is alleged officers manhandled and racially abused the students, who were also subjected to racial taunts by local pro-Jakarta activists who had gathered to support the police as the drama unfolded.

All the students were later released on July 17 following questioning. “Police officers must not let racial abuse happen,” said Father Siswantoko.

He said the students had the right to express their views. “They didn’t even stage a rally, but their voices were silenced anyway,” he said, adding that there is deep-seated prejudice by locals against Papuans.

Risky Hadur, a Catholic student activist also denounced the police action.

Left traumatised
“We express our deep condolences to the death of humanity and brotherhood in this nation.”

The students were left traumatised by the incident, according to Jefry Wenda, coordinator of a Papuan students’ group covering Java and Bali.

“Police officers and other people shouted at them and called them ‘pigs’ and ‘monkeys,’” he said, calling on the government to put a stop to abuses against the Papuan people.

National Commission on Human Rights official Natalius Pigai said the incident would be investigated.

“We must not let such racial discrimination happen,” he said. “We will send a team next week to Yogyakarta to investigate.

Ryan Dagur is a contributor to the Union of Catholic Asian News service.

Herman Wainggai – Long Journey to Freedom

July 22, 2016

​Herman Wainggai – Leader of Nonviolent Struggle in West Papua

What are the changes that happened in the past 53 years that West Papua has been ruled by Indonesia? Why do I reflect on my personal journey and write this? Because this has been the reality of the lives of the Papuan people under the Indonesian military system since the 1st of May, 1963 and since the so called Act of Free Choice in 1969 when West Papua through military and political pressure was unjustly integrated into Indonesia. We [West Papuans] have maintained our dignity in the face of oppression, insult and prejudice. So many of our people have suffered and died, and they will continue to suffer and die under the military regime of Indonesia. This is why we cannot stop our struggle for justice and freedom.

Life is a struggle for West Papuan people.

Indonesia has imposed a brutal military occupation, and the West Papuan people have become victims of rape, murder, abuse, torture and intimidation. When I was in West Papua in the 1990s, I studied at a university, I was also actively involved in the West Papuan people’s struggle and I organized many nonviolent demonstrations against the brutality government of Indonesia. I knew there were many risks to face when I was in my country at that time because I was unsure of how I could deal with the authority of Indonesia. One of the biggest challenges in my life occurred when me and my friends organized a peaceful demonstration in my country.

As a result of the nonviolent protest I was convicted of subversion and incarcerated twice for almost three years in my country of West Papua. While I was in the prison of Indonesia, I thought that I would be killed by the oppressor government of Indonesia if I was still in prison for a long period of time. Beginning that moment, I started to think more about my safety and personal life and staying alive was my biggest concern. I decided that best plan was to leave West Papua after I released out from the prison. It would be better for me to escape from my country to exile. I would be safe, able to increase international attention on the issue and also to continue the struggle in a nonviolent manner from afar.

Most daily life in my country is a nightmare, which is why many West Papuan leaders and friends have been killed, either inside prison or after released. For me, to leave was big decision to make because it meant I would be leaving all my family and friends behind. This was an extremely hard decision to leave my country of West Papua but I think it was great decision for myself and I was also happy to help my other friends who came with me on the outrigger when I left the country and crossed the open ocean for four days to seeking safety in Australia.

New York City is historically significant place to the West Papuan people because of the New York agreement, which ultimately handed control of West Papua to Indonesia in the 1960s. The United Nations building is also located in New York. Fifty years later, I found myself living in the United States of America and every time I have visited to the United Nations building I have developed a deep love for differences in culture, cities, experiences, works and ideas. These are everlasting impressions that will be vivid in my mind and heart for the rest of my life and have been significant in creating my experience today. I am always impressed by the architecture and inspired by the purpose of the United Nations and the work that they do, as well as the flags outside the building.

I learned a lot of things about myself and the world that I never would have had the opportunity to learn if I had not left my home country of West Papua. My time abroad has sometimes been lonely and crazy but it is also the best experience of my life to be able to continue to fight for my people from the USA and hopefully make a difference. I have had moments when I have been extremely uncomfortable, or when I simply have to smile, laugh and embrace the awkward, but that’s what truly makes the journey abroad experience so valuable. I have been forced out of my country, my comfort zone and away from the community but am able to experience another culture that is completely different than my own, a valuable learning experience to say the least. For these significant experiences, I will never regret my decision to step out of my comfort zone and risk this journey abroad because it has been the best of my life, filled with adventure, challenges, and of course, the beautiful awkward.

This feeling of abandonment compelled me to meet people from all over the world from every ethnic group, country, age and religious background and I gained a broader more accepting world view and obtained vast amounts of knowledge all while continuing my advocacy works to help the people of West Papua.

The United Nations was established after World War II and its most important service is being a place for the countries of the world to come together every year to discuss, communicate and debate issues happening around the world. It regulates the activity of the world’s government. The issue of human rights violations in West Papua and brutal militaristic control of Indonesia is something I believe UN needs to act on in order to stand by their upheld values on judgment, human rights, and freedom. This has been an ongoing conflict for 50 years, it is unresolved and the military operation continues to destroy West Papua. Intimidation, terror, murder, rape, and what could be called ‘slow motion genocide,’ these are the realities of life for the trampled people of West Papua. It has been far too long that the West Papuans have being oppressed and it is for this reason that the cause of West Papua should be relisted on the UN Security council agenda sometime.

I have often seen the flags being flown outside of the UN building. It is a beautiful and prideful sight and is a constant reminder to me that the West Papuan flag should be flying outside the building, and someday it will. This is what the West Papuan people have been and will continue to fight for. In the land of West Papua, a man can serve fifteen years in jail simply for raising the Morning Star flag, which has significant historical, political, and cultural meaning to the people of West Papua.

Telling my story has become a new aspect of my dream and big part of my journey. This is a story that I want the world to know, so that my country and my people can live a life of freedom and independence like the other 193 countries who are UN members.

Therefore, in the name of justice, truth and freedom, human rights and political rights for the people of Papua, a free nation of Melanesia, we ask the Australian Government, the government of The United States of America and all other International communities, for a dialog between the Jakarta Government and the Federal Republic of West Papua that is mediated by a third party nation or representatives of the United Nations.

Herman Wainggai Has Been Nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize

July 19, 2016

Author: Syukron Fadillah

Herman Wainggai Proposed Dapet Nobel Peace, Who is he?

JAKARTA, – The awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize in 2016 has significance for Indonesia. George Mason University (GMU), the United States proposed the name of Herman Wainggai as the Nobel nomination.

Herman Wainggai

Born in Jayapura, Papua, it is proposed to accept the award because of its commitment to protecting the people of West Papua without violence. The world is necessary to recognize that commitment.

For the record, during the 20 years of Herman spends himself for the struggle to liberate the people of West Papua by the Indonesian government. No wonder if he is now the leader of renowned human rights on the world stage.

The world community has long introduced by Herman on methods to fight for human rights without resorting to violence. Compassion and embraces the truth is the principle adopted by Herman during this time.

It is this method that builds the Civil Rights Movement in America and liberate India from British rule.

West Papua Action Network 2002 ago once wrote that Herman had been accused of subversion or overthrow the motion is not appropriate constitutional. Accusations and even then took him into custody for two years. Crime does is organizing peaceful protests against Indonesia.

Since working in Washington, DC, in 2010, Herman asked for the support of multilateral organizations, such as the United Nations, members of Congress, human rights, and universities to spread awareness and understanding of the suffering experienced by the people of West Papua.

This year, the organizers of the Nobel Peace Prize nominee selects 376 consisting of 228 individuals and 148 organizations. Nominee elected Nobel Peace Prize will be announced on October 7, 2016. Previously, from 6-8 June 2016, established the Nobel Peace Prize Forum in Minneapolis.

Key talks West Papua and death penalty with Joko Widodo

July 19, 2016

Key talks West Papua and death penalty with Joko Widodo
2:00 pm today
The New Zealand Prime Minister has discussed human rights in West Papua and New Zealand’s opposition to the death penalty during formal talks with the Indonesian leadership.
John Key is on his final day of a two-day trip to Indonesia.
West Papua is tightly guarded by Indonesian military and police, and reports of killings and human rights abuses against the local population have been commonplace in the past few decades.
Mr Key said President Joko Widodo and his officials raised the issue of human rights and West Papua before he did.
He said the Indonesian government clearly wanted to be more open about such matters.
"They did raise the point quite specifically about human rights and said, look, if there are specific issues with human rights, then they take up the issues, they investigate them and they make sure that they are not repeated.
“He seemed to be quite keen to have greater transparency so that there can be greater understanding."

Prime Minister John Key, at right, and Indonesian President Joko Widodo in Jakarta. Photo: RNZ / Chris Bramwell

Mr Key said he told the Indonesian leadership that New Zealand was firmly against the use of the death penalty.
After his meeting he was asked by reporters whether he raised any individual cases with President Widodo.
"From time to time there are really sensitive issues that I raise with other leaders, and I do that on the basis of making sure that I attempt to make the situation better, not worse if there is an individual involved.
"In my experience if I then go and discuss those issues, I then run the risk of making things worse not better."


Soldier gets 20 years for triple homicide, theft

Nether Dharma Somba The Jakarta Post
Jayapura | Mon, July 18 2016 | 07:02 am

A military tribunal in Jayapura, Papua, has sentenced a soldier to 20 years in prison for slaying three people, including two toddlers, in Bintuni, West Papua.

The soldier, Second Pvt. Semuel Djitmau, 28, of the Infantry Battalion (Yonif) 172/NYS Sorong, West Papua, was also dismissed from the military.

Aside from committing murder, Semuel was also found guilty of theft.

Semuel was convicted to have violated Articles 338 and 365 of the Criminal Code. He was proven guilty of brutally murdering three people using a cleaver.

The three victims were Ferly Dian Sari, 26, who was four months pregnant, and her two children Anastasia Putri, 6, and Andhika, 2. Ferly died from repeated stab wounds while the two toddlers were beheaded.

“What the defendant had done was ruthless and inhumane, violated human rights and was against the spirit of the military of protecting the people,” presiding judge Lt. Col. James Vandersloot said, reading out the verdict on Friday.

The sentence was more severe than that wanted by military prosecutors who sought 17 years’ imprisonment for the defendant.

“The sentence is heavier than the military prosecutors demanded because what the defendant did was ruthless and inhumane,” James said.

No factor in the trial was considered in mitigating the defendant’s punishment. “The defendant did not show remorse, apologized to the victims’ family nor shed tears [for his victims],” James added.

The killings were committed on Aug. 25, 2015 in Bintuni, West Papua, when the victims were heading to the village where Ferly taught.

Responding to the sentence, Ferly’s husband Yulius Hermanto said the verdict was too light for someone who had ruthlessly killed three people.

“He should have been sentenced to death for killing three people,” said Yulius, adding that from the beginning the defendant was charged with murder and theft, and not with premeditated murder, which was why the maximum sentence was only 20 years.

He also expressed disappointment that the child protection law was not considered in the charge, as the victims included children.

“Two children have been brutally murdered but the [law’s] articles on child protection were ignored in the trial. We consider this unfair,” he said.

With regard to the sentence, the defendant said he would consider an appeal.

Papuan students in Yogyakarta endure racist insults, multiple arrests in two day siege

July 18, 2016

Papuan students in Yogyakarta endure racist insults, multiple arrests in two day siege

CNN Indonesia – July 17, 2016

Anggi Kusumadewi, Jakarta — Animal names and racist insults could be heard shouted at midday on Friday July 15. The shouts originated from members of mass organisations besieging the Kamasan I Papua student dormitory on Jalan Kusumanegara in the Central Java city of Yogyakarta.

Four mass organisations arrived at the Papuan dormitories, namely the Indonesian Veterans’ Children (FKPPI), the Pancasila Youth (PP), the Paksi Katon [which sees itself as a guardian of Javanese culture and the Yogyakarta sultanate — JB] and the Yogyakarta Militia (Laskar Jogja). In total they numbered around 100 or more people.

Upon hearing the sudden string of animal names and racist insults, the Papuan students inside the student dormitory were startled. One of the students said, "They really said that, the shouts from out front, I have eyes and ears, at us Papuan students, Papuan people", they said angrily and with a sickened heart.

According to the Papuan students, the police officers on guard around the dormitory just ignored the racist behaviour. At the time there were just as many police officers. Yogyakarta resident Kindarto Boti said that police had deployed the officers in three or four trucks. Another resident said that the police arrive fully armed as if they were going to arrest terrorists.

And it was not just the police that were armed — members of the mass organisations also carried weapons. "They brought wooden [clubs], crowbars and other sharp objects", one Papuan student who did not wish to be named for security reasons told CNN Indonesia on Saturday July 16.

Papuan students in Yogyakarta had been receiving racist insults since Thursday July 14 through SMS messages which were sent to those who were members of the People’s Union for West Papua Freedom (PRPPB).

The PRPPB had earlier planned to hold a long-march from the Papuan student dormitories to the zero kilometre point on Jl. Panembahan Senopati. This location is a strategic intersection and a tourist attraction in Yogyakarta and often used for protest actions.

The Long march, which should have taken place at 9am on Friday morning, was part of a peaceful action supporting the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) becoming a full member of the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) — an inter-government organisation in the South Pacific comprising four Melanesian countries, namely Fiji, Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu.

However before the scheduled 9am march could begin, police officers surrounded the Papuan student dormitory. Scuffles broke out between the students and police with the Papuan students being forced back inside the dormitories.

The main road in front of the dormitory was then closed, the front gate blockaded and the rear gate blocked with a police truck. All access in or out of the dormitories was prevented. "Our friends who arrived at the dormitories were intercepted and arrested by police", said a Papuan student inside the dormitory.

They described how two Papuan colleagues who arrived on a motorcycle via the rear gate were stopped. The motorcycle was confiscated resulting in a scuffle with police who then fired warning shots and arrested the pair.

Another colleague from the group Student Struggle for Democracy who tried to enter the dormitory was also arrested. Seven others were likewise arrested as they returned home from buying sweet potatoes from the Giwangan market.

A local resident asked the police why all the Papuan students had been ordered back into the dormitory. The police replied that they had information that several mass organisations would arrive and it would be extremely difficult to stop them if they decided to attack the students in an open location.

As the clock showed 9am it was clear that students from the PRPPB would not be able to realise their plans for a long-march. Around an hour later they began giving political speeches on the dormitory grounds.

In the hours that followed there was uproar when a number of mass organisations arrived and began shouting insults. The siege continued until the 150 or so Papuan students inside the dormitory began to grow hungry. But the sweet potatoes they were to eat had being seized by police when they arrested the seven students.

Calls for solidarity actions and requests for logistical assistance were made to comrades outside. Yogyakarta residents responded by thronging to gather food for the Papuan students that was channeled through the Indonesian Red Cross (PMI). However the PMI ambulance carrying the food failed to drop of the logistics after it was intercepted by police.

Food was only able to be delivered to the dormitory at 9pm. "I sent it towards midnight because it wasn’t possible in the afternoon, the security was still tight because there were several members of mass organisations there", said Yogyakarta resident Darto.

Darto, who had been monitoring the dormitory over night, related how difficult it was to send food to the Papuan students. He had to be circumspect.

"I arrived at around 8pm wanting to send food in but wasn’t able to. A plastic bag filled with food was entrusted to a local resident whose house is near the dormitory. I wasn’t able to enter the dormitory, [I] waited until it was dark, changing location, intelligence agents arrived, asking a lot of questions, it gave me the creeps. So I moved away from the dormitory, they checked and approached again, moved away again. Finally I went home at 8am [the next morning] when the situation had calmed down".

The Yogyakarta regional police say that that officers would continue to guard and monitor the Papuan student dormitories until the situation is considered secure.

"The police hope that the situation will become favourable. We’re on guard so as to prevent something undesirable happening. Because they (the Papuan students) were planning to hold a protest action supporting separatism, Papuan independence, and there were social organisations who didn’t agree", said Yogyakarta regional police public relations chief Assistant Superintendent Any Pudjiastuti.

The Papuan students wanting to hold a separatist action, according to Pudjiastuti, were not just those studying in Yogyakarta. Protesters arrived from Semarang and Solo in Central Java and the East Java provincial capital of Surabaya. Yogyakarta was the centre for the action.

The arrested Papuan students have now been released with the exception of one who according to Pudjiastuti, "Was proven to have resisted [arrest] and assaulted an officer with a sharp weapon resulting a head injury and the harming of a police official".

"So we are not detaining them. We secured six people for questioning. Of the six, five were found to be not guilty, one person committed a crime and is being processed", said Pudjiastuti.

Currently there are still 30 people inside the dormitory while the others have returned to their respective boarding houses. Those from out of town have returned home.

One of the student who remained inside the dormitory said they felt traumatised. "The Papuan student dormitory is still under military siege, but we are now able to continue activities, unlike yesterday on Friday. On Friday, it was dangerous for us to even go out. We were hungry because we couldn’t leave the dormitory to get food", they said.

The mass organisations that wanted to attack the Papuan students, they said, were not just patrolling in front of the dormitory, but also on Jl. Timoho, Malioboro and Glagahsari. They conducted sweeps for Papuans. Not surprisingly, all of this has made Papuan residents in Yogyakarta feel threatened and intimidated (agk)

[Translated by James Balowski for the Indoleft News Service. The original title of the report was "Kisah Mahasiswa Papua di Yogya Dua Hari Terkurung di Asrama".]



Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 51 other followers