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Call Congress about Human Rights in Papua, Free Filep Karma More details here:

Representative Joe Pitts is circulating a letter to President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono of Indonesia concerning the case of political prisoner Filep Karma, a prominent Papuan advocate of self-determination. Karma has been serving a 15-year sentence for raising the Papuan Morning Star flag at a peaceful political rally in 2004. Karma is designated a Prisoner of Conscience by Amnesty International for his nonviolent advocacy.

This bi-partisan initiative is currently circulating in the House of Representative. Please call your Representative this week and urge him or her to sign the letter.

all the Capitol Switchboard (202) 224-3121 . Ask for your congressperson’s foreign policy aide. Ask that your representative sign on to Representative Joseph Pitt’s letter to Indonesia’s President concerning the case of prisoner of conscience Filep Karma. Urge them to support human rights and the rule of law in Indonesia. Offer to e-mail them a copy of the letter. Tell them that if your Representative wishes to sign, she or he should contact Carson Middleton 52411 in the office of Rep Pitts. The deadline is Friday, August 5, so call this week.

If necessary leave a detailed message. If you have trouble getting through by phone send an e-mail to the office, but be sure to follow up with a call.

Thank you for your support.

To find out who your representative is go to

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*IDN 001 / 0311 / OBS 049*



March 25, 2011

The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a joint programme of the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT) and the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), has received new information and requests your urgent intervention in the following situation in *Indonesia*.

*Description of the situation:*

* *

The Observatory has been informed by reliable sources of the brutal attack against Mr. *Banjir Ambarita*, journalist, after the publication of several of his articles in the local newspaper /Bintang Papua/ of Jayapura, Papua province, and in the/ Jakarta Globe/, denouncing sexual abuses committed by police officers in Jayapura.

According to the information received, on March 3, 2011, Mr. Banjir Ambarita was riding his motorcycle in front of the Jayapura Mayor?s office, when two unknown men on a motorcycle reportedly approached him, stabbed him twice in the chest and stomach and fled. As he began to bleed, Mr. Banjir Ambarita drove to the nearby police station. Police officers took him to the Marthen Indey Hospital in Aryoko, Jayapura, where he underwent surgery. He has reportedly recovered since then.

The Papua Regional Police and the Jayapura Police have set up a joint force to investigate the case, but to date, perpetrators remain unknown.

Mr. Banjir Ambarita had recently written articles in the /Bintang Papua/ and in the /Jakarta Globe/ about two alleged rape cases involving the police.

In the first article, he had written that four police officers and three civilians allegedly raped and tortured a 15 year old girl in February 2011, in Biak, Papua province. The last article, dated February 27, 2011, covered a second case in which three police officers forced a woman detainee to perform oral sex on them from November 2010 to January 2011 at the Jayapura Police Detention Centre in Papua province. The media coverage of this incident led to the resignation of the Jayapura?s Police Chief, Mr. Imam Setiawan, and to the sentencing to 21 days of jail for the officers involved.

The Observatory expresses its deepest concern about the attack on Mr. Banjir Ambarita, which seems to merely aim at sanctioning his denunciation of human rights violations, and urges the authorities to ensure his protection and to promptly investigate into the above-mentioned facts.

*Actions requested:*

* *

The Observatory urges the authorities of Indonesia to:

i. Guarantee in all circumstances the physical and psychological integrity of Mr. Banjir Ambarita, as well as all human rights defenders in Indonesia;

ii. Carry out a prompt, effective, thorough, independent and impartial investigation into the above-mentioned events, the result of which must be made public, in order to prosecute and try the perpetrators of these violations before a competent, independent and impartial tribunal;

iii. Conform in all circumstances with the provisions of the Declaration on Human Rights Defenders, adopted on December 9, 1998 by the United Nations General Assembly, in particular:

– Article 1, which states that ?Everyone has the right, individually or in association with others, to promote the protection and realization of human rights and fundamental freedoms at the national and international levels?;

– Article 6, which provides that: ?Everyone has the right, individually and in association with others: (a) to know, seek, obtain, receive and hold information about all human rights and fundamental freedoms (?); (b) freely to publish, impart or disseminate to others views, information and knowledge on all human rights and fundamental freedoms?; (c) to study, discuss, form and hold opinions on the observance, both in law and in practice, of all human rights and fundamental freedoms and, through these and other appropriate means, to draw public attention to those matters?,

– Article 12.2 which provides that ?The State shall take all necessary measures to ensure the protection by the competent authorities of everyone, individually and in association with others, against any violence, threats, retaliation, de facto or de jure adverse discrimination, pressure or any other arbitrary action as a consequence of his or her legitimate exercise of the rights referred to in the present Declaration?;

iv. Ensure in all circumstances the respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms in accordance with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and with international and regional human rights instruments ratified by Indonesia.

* *


* HE. Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, President of the Republic of
Indonesia, Presidential Palace, Istana Merdeka, Jakarta 10110,
Indonesia; Fax: +6221 345 2685/526 8726
* Mr. Gamawan Fauzi. Minister of Home Affairs, Jl. Medan Merdeka
Utara No. 7, Jakarta Pusat, Indonesia, Fax +62 21 385 1193 / +62
21 384 6430, Email: **

* Mr. Patrialis Akbar, Minister for Justice and Human Rights,
Department of Justice and Human Rights, Jl. H.R. Rasuna Said Kav
No. 4-5, Kuningan – Jakarta Selatan 12950, Indonesia, Fax: + 62 21
525 3095/ 310 4149/ 522 5036, Email: **

* Indonesian National Commission on Human Rights, Jl. Latuharhary No
4B, Menteng, Jakarta Pusat 10310, Indonesia, Fax : +62 21 392
5227, Email: **
* Permanent Mission of the Republic of Indonesia in Geneva, Rue de
Saint-Jean 16, Case Postale 2271, 1211 Geneva 2, Suisse, Fax: +41
22 345 57 33, Email: **

· *Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia to the Kingdom of Belgium, *Boulevard de la Woluwe 38, B-1200, Brussels, Belgium, Fax +32 27 72 82 10, Email: **

Please also write to the diplomatic representations of Indonesia in your respective countries.

Geneva-Paris, March 25, 2011

* *

Kindly inform us of any action undertaken quoting the code of this appeal in your reply.

The Observatory, an OMCT and FIDH venture, is dedicated to the protection of Human Rights Defenders and aims to offer them concrete support in their time of need.

To contact the Observatory, call the emergency line:

· E-mail:

· Tel and fax OMCT + 41 22 809 49 39 / + 41 22 809 49 29

· Tel and fax FIDH + 33 1 43 55 25 18 / +33 1 43 55 18 80


Dear friends of West Papua,

I need your help urgently.

I have just heard that 73 men, women and children from a refugee camp in Vanimo
have been taken from their homes and imprisoned and their houses and crops
destroyed by the Papua New Guinean army and police forces.

My heart cries every time I hear of injustices visited on my people. However,
this time is even more difficult for me as this atrocity has taken place in the
same camp where I fled in 2002 to join my wife Maria and our daughter Koteka
who had fled there from West Papua 2 years earlier.

I left Papua New Guinea to come to the UK believing that my Peoples I left
behind would be safe as we consider the people of Papua New Guinea to be our
brothers and sisters – after all, we are all Papuans. If we cannot be safe
there, where can we be safe?

You can help immediately by either sending money, no matter how small, that we
will ensure is used to provide the food, water, medicines and clothes that our
friends so desperately need, or by writing to your Ambassador to urge them to
call on their Government to release our friends immediately.

If you can help with any money at all, please send by bank transfer to Free
West Papua Campaign: Sort Code 089299
Account Number 65142631

Below this e-mail is a suggestion of what you might write to your PNG

Finally, we are also seeking urgent legal help – if you know of anyone who
could help us in this regard, please e-mail me at

Your help really is desperately needed. I understand a full report from Vanimo
is being written and I will share this when it is ready if you want more
information. We are scared our friends will be deported to West Papua where
they face possible torture and imprisonment if we do not act fast.

On behalf of my people, thank you for anything you can do,

Yours in hope,

Benny Wenda
West Papuan independence leader in the United Kingdom & Chair of the Koteka
Tribal Assembly
P.O Box.656, Oxford,OX3 3AP England UK

More Information from Vanimo please click here

Suggestion of what to write:

You can find the address of you PNG High Commission at this link –

Dear [name of Ambassador],

I am writing to urge you to do all you can to ensure the immediate release of
the 73 women, men and children who have recently been arrested in a refugee
camp in Vamino. These innocent people, many of whom already have right to
remain, have had their homes and crops destroyed and face possible death if
they are deported to West Papua.

The Papua New Guinean Government cannot stand by whilst babies of less than 2
years of age languish in prison uncertain of their fate, whilst a whole
community now lives in fear of whether they will be next.

The people of West Papua have struggled for independence for 48 years. Many
have fled their homes and have looked to you for support and acceptance. If
they cannot be safe in Papua New Guinea, where can they be safe?

Yours sincerely,

[your name]

Details for the United Kingdom are:
Papua New Guinea High Commission
High Commissioner Jean L. Kekedo
14 Waterloo Place
London SWIR 4AR
Phone (44) 20 7930 0922
Facsimile (44) 20 7930 0828

Action Alert: Support Human Rights in West Papua

This week the House subcommittee on Asia will hold hearing on West Papua (Wed, September 22, 3 pm, 2172 Rayburn House Office Bldg., broadcast online via WEBCAST link at

Can’t come to hearing? Please take this simple step to support human rights and justice.

Call your representative in Congress. Urge him or her to co-sponsor H. Res. 1355, The resolution, submitted by Rep. Patrick Kennedy urges the government of Indonesia to improve human rights in West Papua.

Please Sign and forward to your personal email list:

On Tuesday 21st September a Petition on West Papua UN Referendum was posted at

The Petitioners are The Collective Leaders of the Papua National Consensus,
Forkorus Yaboisembut, SPd., Chairman, Papua Customary Council (DAP)
Rev. Edison Waromi, SH., President, West Papua National Authority (WPNA)
Emr. Rev. Herman Awom, STh., Moderator, Papua Presidium Council (PDP).

The aim of the Petition is to garner as many signatures of support as possible from the world community, but especially from Papuan nationals, for a genuine Referendum in 2011, supervised by the UN.

The Consensus leaders hope that this will serve to help those lobbying at the UN, and also those seeking to bring a case to the ICJ, to indicate that the majority of Papuans are demanding their opportunity for self-determination, denied under the terms of the New York Agreement, 1962/1969.

Please do this simple task to support human rights and justice.

Call your representative in Congress. Urge him or her to co-sponsor H. Res. 1355, The resolution, submitted by Rep. Patrick Kennedy urges the government of Indonesia to improve human rights in West Papua.

Prisoners of Conscience Filep Karma,Yusak Pakage and others may spend the next decade or more in prison in Indonesia for peacefully raising a flag. Indonesian assaults on freedom of expression and abuse in its prisons are well-documented. A year ago, the Indonesian government expelled the International Committee of the Red Cross in West Papua.

What YOU can do:

Call your Representative today. Urge her/him to co-sponsor House Resolution 1355 supporting human rights in Indonesia’s West Papua. A copy of the Resolution is below.

When you call, ask to speak to the foreign affairs legislative assistant. The Congressional switchboard number is 202-224-3121 (ask for the office of your Representative), or for contact information. To sign on to the resolution, the office should contact Daniel Murphy in Rep. Patrick Kennedy’s office (5-4911).

Talking points:

1. The U.S. Department of State, UN investigators and human rights organizations have documented threats to freedom of expression and dire prison conditions in the Indonesian provinces of West Papua and Papua.

2. The government of Indonesia must demonstrate its commitment to freedom of expression by releasing people convicted for peacefully expressing their political views, improving prison conditions, and allowing access to the International Committee of the Red Cross.

3. The U.S. Congress needs to be a strong advocate for human rights in Indonesia and elsewhere. Representative Kennedy’s resolution is an opportunity for members to express their commitment to the rule of law and freedom of expression in Indonesia. This can only strengthen democracy.

4. The Congressmember should support human rights by co-sponsoring House Resolution 1355 by contacting Dan Murphy in Rep. Patrick Kennedy’s office.

You can e-mail your member of Congress on the Resolution via Amnesty International USA.



H. RES. l355

Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives regarding the human rights crisis in Papua and West Papua.


Mr. KENNEDY submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on _____________


Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives regarding the human rights crisis in Papua and West Papua.

Whereas the Department of State’s 2008 Human Rights Report on Indonesia documents the detention of at least 30 peaceful Papuan activists, the killing of a Papuan man at a peaceful rally, and additional evidence of suppressed speech, societal abuse, and discrimination against religious groups, violence and sexual abuse against women, child labor, and human trafficking;

Whereas the Government of Indonesia has recently banned the International Committee of The Red Cross(ICRC) from the Provinces of Papua and West Papua which followed ICRC visits to detention facilities;

Whereas a 2007 United Nations report by United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture, Manfred Nowak, found “widespread torture in Indonesian prisons” and “the use of excessive force by Indonesian security forces in particular in Papua” and that “beatings and other forms of torture are entrenched in much of Indonesia’s prison system where a culture of impunity reigns”;

Whereas Indonesian President Abdurrahman Wahid permitted Papuans to fly the “morning star” flag as a cultural and historic symbol;

Whereas Amnesty International has identified numerous prisoners of conscience in Indonesian prisons, among them Papuans such asFilep Karma and Yusak Pakage, imprisoned for peaceful political protests including the display of the “morning star” flag which has historic, cultural, and political meaning for Papuans;

Whereas 40 Members of Congress in 2008 petitioned Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono on behalf of Papuan political prisoners Filep Karma and Yusak Pakage;

Whereas a Human Rights Watch report on June 5, 2009, noted “torture and abuse of prisoners in jails in Papua is rampant”; and

Whereas prominent Indonesian leaders have called for a national dialogue and Papuan leaders have called for an internationally-mediated dialogue to address long-standing grievances in Papua and West Papua:

Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That it is the sense of the House of Representatives that

(1) the Government of Indonesia should report to the international community specific progress made regarding

(A) the end of abuse of those detained by authorities in Papua and West Papua and prosecution of those guilty of that abuse;
(B) actions taken by the Government of Indonesia to improve conditions of incarceration, especially in Papua and West Papua;
(C) measures taken to protect the right of its citizens to peaceful assembly and association as well as the freedom of speech and specifically symbolic speech, such as raising banners or flags;
(D) compatibility of Indonesian law that criminalizes peaceful political dissent and conflicting Indonesian commitments concerning the  rights to freedom of speech and assembly guaranteed by international covenants to which Indonesia is a party, to include the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; and
(E) provision to or access to detention facilities in West Papua by recognized human rights monitoring institutions, including the International Committee of The Red Cross; and

(2) the Government of Indonesia should allow an independent, third party human rights organization to review prison conditions with special attention to Papuan inmates and on the basis of that review, formulate a series of recommendations to the Government of Indonesia that would facilitate prison and legal reforms especially to

(A) address deficits in facilities, personnel training, and procedures for the purpose of improving the humanitarian treatment of those detained;
(B) formulating procedures, including judicial reform and legal remedies to ensure that prison authorities face appropriate punishment for mistreatment of those detained; and
(C) encourage reform of the Indonesian criminal code and sentencing procedures to ensure that they reflect Indonesia’s commitments under international undertakings and Indonesia’s own legal obligations to protect fundamental human rights, including the rights to freedom of speech and peaceful assembly and association.

see also

Amnesty International Secretariat

UA: 100/10 Index: ASA 21/004/2010 Indonesia Date: 29 April 2010



Filep Karma is in need of urgent medical care. He has been seriously ill since August 2009. A recent medical report recommended that he undergo further treatment in the Indonesian capital, Jakarta. However, the prison authorities have told him they cannot fund his medical treatment

Filep Karma, a 50-year-old prisoner of conscience at Abepura Prison in the Indonesian province of Papua, has been in prison since December 2004. He had suffered from health problems before his arrest but the conditions at the prison and the refusal of the authorities to provide adequate medical care have exacerbated his conditions.

In August 2009, he had complained of intense pain in the lower abdomen, difficulty in urinating and testicular swelling. Further medical tests confirmed that he was suffering from bronchopneumonia, excess fluid in the lungs, urinary tract infection and various other medical problems. In the medical report the doctor recommended that he receive further treatment in Jakarta, but prison authorities have refused to send him due to a lack of funds. If untreated the conditions could be potentially life threatening.

Amnesty International believes the denial of medical care to Filep Karma may amount to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment.

PLEASE WRITE IMMEDIATELY in Indonesian or your own language calling on authorities in Indonesia:

Expressing concern at reports that Filep Karma is not receiving adequate medical care;

Urging the authorities to ensure that Filep Karma receives full and immediate access to adequate medical care;

Urging the authorities to cover the cost of such treatment in accordance with the UN Body of Principles for the Protection of All Persons under Any Form of Detention or Imprisonment (Principle 24);

Calling for the immediate and unconditional release of Filep Karma as his imprisonment is related to his right to peaceful demonstration.


Head of Abepura Prison
Anthonius M. Ayorbaba
Lembaga Pemasyarakatan (Lapas) Abepura
Jl. Kesehatan 11
Papua 99351, Indonesia
Fax: +62 96 758 1705
Salutation: Dear Anthonius M. Ayorbaba

Director General of Prisons
Ministry of Justice and Human Rights
Drs. Untung Sugiyono
Jl. Veteran No. 11
Jakarta Pusat
Fax: +62 21 384 1711
Salutation: Dear Director General

COPIES TO: diplomatic representatives of Indonesia accredited to your country.Please check with your section office if sending appeals after the above date.

Additional Information

Conditions in Abepura prison are reportedly poor. Bathing for prisoners is restricted to once or twice a week due to a lack of fresh water. Filep Karma did receive temporary medical leave from the prison in 2007 in order to receive hospital treatment.

Former civil servant Filep Karma was among approximately 200 people who took part in a peaceful ceremony in Abepura, Papua Province on 1 December 2004. In commemoration of the declaration of Papuan independence in 1962, the Morning Star Flag was raised. Police then advanced on the crowd, firing warning shots and beating people with batons. Filep Karma was subsequently arrested. Amnesty International considers him to be a prisoner of conscience.

During Filep Karma’s trial, police responded with extreme force to large demonstrations that took place outside the courthouse on 10 May 2005. Many people were injured. A senior police officer was dismissed as a result, but he did not face criminal charges. There has been no formal inquiry into the events. Filep Karma was convicted of treason and sentenced on 26 May 2005. He is serving a sentence of 15 years’ imprisonment, which was confirmed by the Supreme Court on 27 October 2005.

West Papua and Papua provinces occupy the western half of the island of New Guinea. Papua province borders the independent state of Papua New Guinea. The arrests and detention of people in Papua are part of a larger crackdown on political activists in areas where there has been a history of separatist movements including Papua and Maluku. The Indonesian authorities have reacted strongly towards individuals who have called for independence. Amnesty International has documented dozens of arrests in past years of such peaceful political activists. Some were sentenced to terms of imprisonment for raising the prohibited pro independence “Morning Star” flag in Papua.

Amnesty International takes no position whatsoever on the political status of any province of Indonesia, including calls for independence. However the organization believes that the right to freedom of expression includes the right to peacefully advocate referendums, independence or other political solutions.

UA: 100/10 Index: ASA 21/004/2010 Issue Date: 29 April 2010

Letter to UN Secretary-General

Below is a sample letter to the Secretary General of the United Nations urging a review of the Act of Free Choice:


The Secretary-General
United Nations
UN Plaza
New York NY 10017,

Fax: (212) 963-4879; 963 2155; 963 7055

Dear Secretary-General,

I am writing to support a request made to you on 26 March 2002 to instigate a review of the UN’s conduct in relation to the Act of Free Choice in West Papua in 1968-69. The documents submitted to you on 26 March make it quite clear that the UN failed to fulfil its obligation to “advise, assist and participate” in an act of self-determination “in accordance with international practice”.

What took place was a complete sham, which has condemned the West Papuans to more than three decades of brutality and repression at the hands of the Indonesian military. It remains a source of unrest in the territory to this day. This betrayal of the West Papuan people was one of the most discreditable episodes in the UN’s history. The UN’s conduct then contrasts starkly with its scrupulously fair administration, under your leadership, of the popular consultation in East Timor in 1999.

I urge you to act immediately on the request for a review of the UN’s conduct in West Papua. A proper investigation is vital to the credibility of the UN as an organisation which promotes and protects all human rights, including the right to self-determination. I look forward to your response to this request.

Yours sincerely,

[your name and title]

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