Activists arrested while calling for for ULMWP to become member of Melanesian Spearhead Group
On this day 20 May 2015,in the early morning, members of the the
resistance movement of Papuan people in Manokwari, acting on behalf of
the Federal State of the Republic of West Papua, the West Papua
National Coalition for Liberation and the National Committee of West
Papua (KNPB) were planning to hold a peaceful demonstration to give
expression to their aspiration – through the intermediary of of the
United Liberation Movement for West Papua – to become a member of the
Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG).
Already very early in the morning, at 5.30am, the LP3BH received an
SMS saying that several members of the TNI (Indonesian Army) and Polri
(Police) had arrived in a truck that was parked in front of Office of
of the Papuan Traditional Council (DAP) of the District of Manokwari,
and had unfurled a banner the wording on which was not clear.
Thereafter, several activists came along and dismantled the banner.
According to another SMS received by the LP3BH, nine Papuan
activists were arrested by members of Brimob and were taken by truck
to a place in Kwaki. They were arrested while getting ready to march
towards the office of the DAP-Manokwari.
Then half a hour later, at 10’30am, another thirty activists were
arrested at the junction between Ambon-Manokwari and were subjected
to mal-treatment by members of Brimob, then transported in the
direction of Brimob headquarters.
According to a report from witnesses which was received by the
LP3BH, they were maltreated by members of Brimob. Another witness
report received by LP3BH stated that the detainees were struck hard
by members of Brimob, in some cases with rubber truncheons, hit on the
back of their heads or in their faces. One of the persons arrested was
27-year old Alexander Nekenem, the chairman of the KNPB.
One of the arrestees appears to have been seriously injured and
kicked. The witness was able to take photographs which showed that
tear gas had been by the security forces, which blinded their eyes.
One of the arrestees appears to have been struck by a rubber
truncheon on his neck, which appears to have been very painful and
These reports would seem to suggest that altogether 39 or 40
activists were arrested and driven away to Brimob headquarters or by
This is a preliminary report from Yan Christian Warinussy,
Executive-Director of LP3BH-Manokwari.
[Translated by Carmel Budiardjo.]