Monday, July 23, 2012

1) UK holds media operations training programme for Indonesian military

1) UK holds media operations training programme for Indonesian military

2) Freeport to Pay Higher Royalties After Months of Contract Talks
3) Freeport Indonesia Agrees to Partial IPO: Minister

4) Komnas HAM declares 1965 purge a gross human rights violation

5) Trial of Buchtar Tabuni postponed
6) 15 human rights activists arrested inJayapura
7) Indonesia Synergy Discussion Series
8 ) Mining Giant Freeport Indonesia Cuts 2012 Sales Forecast

9) Moderate quake hits Papua


1) UK holds media operations training programme for Indonesian military

Mon, July 23 2012 21:06 | 69 Views
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The United Kingdom Ministry of Defence will hold a training program on media operations for Indonesian military officers, starting Monday through Friday (July 27), as part of an effort to improve the defense forces` ability to work in the modern media environment.

Deputy British Ambassador to Indonesia Rebecca Razavi noted that media had the power to influence people`s opinion and the way history was written. Therefore, she added, such training programs were essential for a good democracy.

"I am pleased that the UK is continuing to work closely with the Indonesian Armed Forces to help develop skills in the area of media operations. This will help the military personnel work effectively with the media for accurate reporting and improved information flow," Rebecca said in a press statement received by ANTARA News here on Monday.

Meanwhile, Indonesian Military (TNI) spokesperson Rear Admiral Iskandar Sitompul said human resources were an important asset of TNI. In the current media environment, he added, the military organization needed to respond quickly to every incident.

"This training is part of the efforts to improve the ability of the TNI information personnel to communicate in an ever-changing strategic environment," Iskandar explained.

The training was organized with the Royal Military Academy Sandhurs in order to enhance the Indonesian military's ability to work in a variety of operational environments.
Editor: Priyambodo RH

2) Freeport to Pay Higher Royalties After Months of Contract Talks
Tito Summa Siahaan | July 23, 2012Freeport Indonesia has agreed to raise its royalty payment to the government, according to a statement from a top economic minister on Monday. 

The announcement represents progress in the government’s protracted renegotiations with Freeport Indonesia, a subsidiary of US based mining giant Freeport-McMoran Copper & Gold, who was one of the first foreign companies to invest in Suharto’s New Order Regime in the 1960’s. 

Freeport operates the world’s biggest gold and second-biggest copper mine in the restive province of Papua.

“[Freeport] is willing to increase the royalty,” said Coordinating Minister for the Economy Hatta Rajasa. He did not, however, specify the percentage increase.

In February, the government created a team to renegotiate older mining contracts that generally asked for smaller royalties. And in March, Indonesian authorities announced a new law cutting maximum foreign ownership in mining companies from 80 percent to less than half. 

Both actions were a bid to keep a larger portion of revenues from the country’s vast natural resources, and increase the participation of local entities in the mining sector. 

At present, Freeport pays a 1 percent royalty to the government on its total gross sales of gold. 

A 2003 government regulation requires mining companies to pay a royalty of 4 percent for copper exports, 3.25 percent for silver, and 3.75 percent for gold. But Freeport’s contract was established before 2003, and the Indonesian legal system does not recognize the principle of retroactivity. 

Terms agreed to in contracts signed before the 2003 law, in other words, take precedent. 

“Now, [the royalty] is only at 1 percent, it is very small,’’ Hatta said in February.

Royalties have been just one issue on the negotiating table, however. Government revenue, requirements for miners to process raw materials in Indonesia and divest a stake to local owners, the size of mining concession areas and the use of local content in operations have also been up for discussion. 

On these matters, Hatta said Freeport was willing to build a smelter to comply with the government requirement to process ore minerals locally. He also said the mining giant was willing to give up some of its land due to a reevaluation of its mining concession area and increase the participation of the local government and regional companies.

Hatta, who is chairman of the National Mandate Party (PAN), a close ally to President Susilo Yudhoyono’s Democratic Party, also said Freeport-McMoran had agreed to sell part of their interest in their Indonesian operation.

“[Freeport Indonesia] agreed to divest a stake, but there’s no agreement on the 51 percent that we requested,” Hatta Rajasa told reporters on Monday. 

Details on other terms of the IPO, including the time frame, have not been shared.

Freeport Indonesia’s president director, Rozik B. Soetjipto, had said early this month that the miner was willing to increase its royalty, but asked the government to reduce the amount it must pay in corporate income tax.

Indonesian companies typically pay a 25 percent income tax, while Freeport pays 35 percent.

Additional reporting by Agence France-Presse
3) Freeport Indonesia Agrees to Partial IPO: Minister

July 23, 2012
Indonesia said Monday the local subsidiary of US mining giant Freeport-McMoRan was willing to sell a stake on Jakarta’s stock market, but had not agreed to divest the majority share the government sought.

Indonesian authorities announced a new law in March cutting maximum foreign ownership in mining companies from 80 percent to less than half, in a bid to keep a larger portion of revenues from the country’s vast natural resources.

Freeport Indonesia’s Grasberg project in the restive province of Papua is the world’s biggest gold and second-biggest copper mine, employing more than 20,000 people.

“They [Freeport Indonesia] agreed to divest a stake, but there’s no agreement on the 51 percent that we requested,” Coordinating Minister for the Economy Hatta Rajasa told reporters.

“I have asked them to divest via an initial public offering [IPO] in Indonesia and they agreed,” he added.

Freeport Indonesia was not immediately available for comment. Its US parent company owns the vast majority of the firm.

Earlier this month, Freeport Indonesia president Rozik Soetjipto was quoted saying an IPO was being “considered” by the company.

“The IPO would be good for Freeport Indonesia,” he told the Jakarta Globe newspaper, adding that it would make the company “more accountable and transparent.”

The new regulation obliges foreigners to reduce their holdings to below 50 percent by selling shares to Indonesians over a 10-year period, but only applies to new mining concessions.

Rajasa said he “cannot force” Freeport to sell such a stake in its local subsidiary as there was no requirement to do so in its original contract.

Indonesia, Southeast Asia’s largest economy, has some of the world’s biggest untapped mineral reserves, including tin, nickel, copper and gold.

A three-month strike over wages and work conditions at the Grasberg mine last year turned violent, with at least eight people killed in ambush attacks and clashes with police. The strike ended in December.

Agence France-Presse

4) Komnas HAM declares 1965 purge a gross human rights violation

Justice delayed is justice denied: Nur Kholis (center), the head of the investigation team working under the National Human Rights Commission (Komnas HAM), displays evidence on Monday that confirms military officials’ involvement in the killings of at least 500,000 members of the Indonesian Communist Party (PKI) during the 1960s and 1970s. The team has urged the government to prosecute relevant military officials, who worked under the command of late former president Soeharto, and to deliver an official apology and rehabilitation to the victims and their families. (JP/Jerry Adiguna)
The National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM) has declared in its findings on Monday that the systematic prosecution of alleged members of the Indonesian Communist Party (PKI) after the failed 1965 coup was a gross human rights violation. The commission urged that military officials who were involved in the purge be brought to trial.
Nur Kholis, the head of the investigative team on the 1965 coup, said that state officials under the Operational Command for the Restoration of Security and Order (Kopkamtib) led by former president Soeharto who served from 1965 to 1967, and between 1977 and 1978, should be taken to court for various crimes, including mass rape, torture and killings.
Nur Kholis said that his team had handed over the 850-page report to the Attorney General’s Office (AGO). “We hope that the AGO will follow up the report,” he said.
During more than three years of investigation, the team had gathered testimony from 349 witnesses.
Nur Kholis said that military officials had deliberately targeted innocent civilians during the operations, which occurred nationwide. “Many of the victims had nothing to do with the communist party or its subordinates. The military officials made it look like those people were linked to the party,” he said.
After the Sept. 30, 1965 movement, thousands of people, some estimate as many as 500,000, who were suspected of being PKI members were killed. Many more were imprisoned for years without charge.
The discrimination against people associated with the PKI continued with the government barring them from being civil servants, military officers, teachers or clerics. Former members of PKI also found it hard to get jobs due to the ex-political prisoner status on their identity cards.
In 2004, the Constitutional Court ruled that ex-members of PKI were allowed to contest elections. Two years later, the government deleted the ex-prisoner label from identity cards.
Nur Kholis said that the team demanded the government issue a formal apology to victims and their families. The apology should be followed by rehabilitation, reparation and compensation.
The Murder Victim’s Research Foundation (YPKP) said that the late former president Soeharto was the person most responsible for the crimes. However, the fact that he had passed away should not deter the AGO from investigating the case. YPKP said that several other perpetrators remained alive. (fzm/lfr)
from Tapol
5) Trial of Buchtar Tabuni postponed
JUBI, 23 July 22012

The second hearing in the trial of Buchtar Tabuni did not proceed as planned because a witness who was due to appear failed to turn up,

Buchtar Tabuni is the chairman of the KNPB, the National Committee of West Papua, and is facing charges for having allegedly inflicted damage on the Abepura prison where he is currently being held and for exchanging harsh words with prison warders.

The prosecutor told the court that they intend to summon ten witnesses. The first to be summoned was the  former director of the prison, Liberti Sitnjak who is now the director of a prison in Ambon.  This was the witness who failed to turn up.

Before the hearing was postponed, one of the lawyers of the defendants, Gustaf Kawar, called on the judge to insist that the prosecutor guarantee that witnesses appear as planned and ensure that the next hearing is not postponed. After an exchange between the lawyer and the judge, the hearing was postponed.

The next hearing is due to take place on 26 July.

The defendant is on trial together with Dominggus Pulalo.

The hearing was attended by dozens of members of the KNPB.

[Translated by TAPOL]
6) 15 human rights activists arrested inJayapura

UBI, 21 July 2012

Human rights activists arrested in West Papua

Following arrest of 15  members of the SKHP, Solidarity for Victims of Human Rights Abuse, the organisation has announced that it would seek to take action to bring members of the police force to trial for this round-up

The 15 SKHP members were arrested while they were engaged in collecting money from the general public to cover the costs of medical treatment for political prisoners and other prisoners now being held in Abepura. The police claim that they had taken action against these SKHP activists on the grounds that the organisation was not formally recognised and that they had no permit to carry out the action they were involved in.

Spokesman for the SKHP, Peneas Lokbere, said that regardless of the actions taken by the police, they would continue to collect money.

Another member of SKHP, Bovit Bovra, said  that the police and others should be grateful to their organisation for taking on the burden of caring for prisoners who are in need of medical care and attention.

A former deputy chairman of the National Commission for Human Rights in Papua, Matius Murib said that these arrests appear to be connected with the actsof violence that have been occurring in West Papua over the past two months. These actions had led to the arrest and shooting dead of Mako Tabuni, a human rights activist on 16 June, and threats made against Socrates Sofyan Yoman, the chairman of the Alliance of Baptist Churches in Papua.

He drew attention to acts of intimidation against human rights activists. He said that these arrests meant that the police were  closing the space for activism by human rights activists and represented an assault against their democratic rights.

[Translated by TAPOL]
Discussion Notes
7) Indonesia Synergy Discussion Series
Papua Update: Development, Natural Resource Management and Human Rights 
8 ) Mining Giant Freeport Indonesia Cuts 2012 Sales Forecast
Dion Bisara | July 23, 2012
Freeport Indonesia, the local unit of the world’s largest copper and gold miner, has revised down its sales targets for this year as the company decided to delay mining a high-value seam at its open-pit mine amid slower overall progress at its underground mine. 

The gold miner revised its sales target to 340,000 metric tons of copper and 27 metric tons of gold, lower than previous estimates reported in April by about 226,000 tons of copper and 1.7 metric tons of gold, a report from parent company Freeport-McMoRan showed last week. Freeport Indonesia sold 383,000 tons of copper and 36 tons of gold in 2011. 

“Freeport Indonesia’s revised sales ... because of a deferral of access to high-grade material in the open pit ... and a slower than expected ramp-up of the DOZ [deep ore zone] underground mine,” Freeport said in its report on Thursday. 

Freeport Indonesia said it sold 83,000 tons of copper and seven tons of gold in the second quarter, lower than sales of 120,000 tons of copper and 9.3 tons of gold in the same period last year, “primarily reflecting anticipated lower ore grades and production rates.” 

During the fourth quarter of 2011 through the first quarter of 2012, the firm’s operations were disrupted by a strike of local workers calling for wage increases.

But the company said that from April to June, its operations ran normally. “Freeport Indonesia’s milling rates averaged 179,500 metric tons of ore per day in the second quarter of 2012, compared with the first-quarter 2012 average of 114,800 metric tons of ore per day,” the company said. 

The parent company expects sales from Indonesia to increase in 2013 as Freeport Indonesia gains access to higher ore grades in the Grasberg mine and as its high-grade Big Gossan underground mine is expected to reach capacity of 7,000 tons of ore per day in 2013.

“Altogether, these mines are expected to increase production over several years to approximately 240,000 metric tons of ore per day following the currently anticipated transition from the Grasberg open pit in 2016,” Freeport said. 

Freeport Indonesia is developing large-scale, high-grade underground ore bodies located beneath and nearby the Grasberg open pit. It allocated about $700 million a year in investment for those projects over the next five years. 

The revised target came after Freeport Indonesia said earlier this month it was considering an initial public offering to abide by government rules on foreign ownership.


9) Moderate quake hits Papua

Mon, July 23 2012 10:37 | 59 Views
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - A moderate quake measuring 5.5 on the Richter scale hits Waropen, Papua province, here on Monday at 07.22 West Indonesian Time (WIB).

According to information from the Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) the quake is centered at 2.39 southern longitude and 135.44 eastern latitude at the depth of 10 kilometers. The quake has no potential to trigger tsunami. 
Editor: Ella Syafputri

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