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Ending the Violation of Human Rights in West Papua is nothing more than a ‘Illusion”

April 23, 2018

The President of the Republic of Indonesia, Ir Joko Widodo has
visited the Land of Papua on many occasions and has moreover declared
his intention to resolved alleged violations of Basic Human Rights
that have been perpetrated within the soil of Cendrawasih.

However, the fact is that nothing has happened in accordance
with these stated intentions. As the Executive-Director of the LP3BH,
the Institute for Research, Investigation and Development of Legal
Aid, I regard these intentions as nothing more than mere ‘illusion’.

This is clear in view of the fact that nothing has been done in
accordance with legal requirements for the past sixteen years with
regard to the case of Wasior which occurred sixteen years ago, nor
with the case of Wamena that occurred three years ago, nor with the
case of Paniai which happened three years ago. Nothing of any
significance has occurred..which is why, speaking as the
Executive-Director of the LP3BH, I regard these fine words as being
nothing more than an illusion.

According to the initial investigations undertaken by the
institution which is officially qualified to investigate these matters
as stipulated in Law 26/200 on Human Rights Courts, according to which
investigations conducted by the Commission for Human Rights, the
above-mentioned cases were regarding as being cases of grave Human
Rights Violations.

Grave violations of basic human rights are regulated in Article 7
paras 7, 8, Law and 9, Law 26/2000 as well as Law 26/2000 on Human
Rights Courts. These laws stipulate that grave Human Rights Violations
include ‘crimes against humanity’ as well as genocide.

In my opinion, speaking as a lawyer and Defender of Basic Human
Rights in the Land of Papua, this means that the Commission for Human
Rights should be given unrestricted access to carry out their
responsibilities to investigate and draw conclusions with regard the
violations of these above-mentioned grave cases.

[One two-line paragraph in the document now being translate is blurred.]

Whereas in the case of Paniai, President Jokowi, as
Commander-in-Chief of the TNI (Indonesian Army), should have been
insisting on getting unrestricted access for the Commission for Human
Rights to question high-ranking officers who may have been involved
the case of grave human rights violations in Enaratoli-Paniai on 8th
December, 2014.

According to the Commission for Human Rights as the foremost
institution within the legal framework in Indonesia, as stipulated in
Law 39/1999 and Law 26//2000,came to the conclusion that these three
cases did indeed involve violations of basic human rights.

The LP3BH is convinced that the time has now come for the powers
of the Commission for Human Rights to be reinforced in this country in
order to ensure that Indonesia is a state that upholds the principles
of law and democracy.

In my opinion, this is extremely important because, since the era
of reform, Indonesia’s standing as a country based on the principles
can only be achieved on the basis of three profoundly-important
principles. These are: the supremacy of law, equality before the law
and due process of law.

In my opinion, these principles are :

1. The guaranteed protection of basic human rights,
2. The legal framework of law and justice
3. Due process of the law.

In my opinion, all this can only be achieved by there being:the
guarantee that human rights are fully protected, the courts are free
from interference and the guarantee that all matters are handled
within the framework of the law.


Yan Christian Warinussy, Executive-Director of the LP3BH-Manokwari,
lawyer and defender of basic human rights in West Papua, recipient of
the John Humphreys Freedom Award 2005, Canada, former journalist at
Cenderwasih Post and one-time adviser of the Governor of West Papua.

Translated by Carmel Budiardjo, recipient of the Right Livelihood
Award, Stockholm, 1995

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