Wednesday, March 27, 2013

1) Papuan police identify civilian helicopter shooters

1) Papuan police identify civilian helicopter shooters
2) Money in the farms
3) Military Tribunal Law Overhaul Needed to Hold Soldiers to Account, Critics Say


1) Papuan police identify civilian helicopter shooters

A- A A+
Papua Police chief Ins. Gen. Tito Karnavian said the police had identified the perpetrators behind the civilian helicopter shootings on Tuesday in Puncak Senyum, Papua. He said they were likely the armed civilian group whose leader had been identified only as PW.
“According to a preliminary investigation, it is strongly believed that the shooters were the armed civilian group. The area has been identified as the group’s playground for quite a while now,” Tito, former police counterterrorism special detachment commander, said on Wednesday.
He added that there had been growing suspicion that the shootings were also part of the group’s strategy to put blame on the police and the military due to the existence of a joint command post near the scene.
“They want the civilians to think that it was either the police or the military behind the shootings,” he said.
Separately, Cendrawasih Military Command Commander Maj. Gen. Christiant Zebua said he regretted the shootings, saying that whoever had masterminded the attack was heartless and irrational.
“Let alone the fact that the helicopter was transporting two Christian missionaries who carry out humanitarian missions in the region. This just makes the shootings look even worse,” he said.
An early report stated that a helicopter owned by the Helivida Foundation, en route to Wamena with two Christian missionary passengers, was shot at by unidentified gunmen in Puncak Senyum on Tuesday. No victims were reported but there were two bullet holes found on a window near the cockpit. (dic)

2) Money in the farms

A- A A+
Paper Edition | Page: 8
Gentle handling: A vanilla farmer pinches vanilla pods to help pollination. Farmers in Serui, Yapen Islands regency, Papua, are starting to cultivate vanilla for export to Europe and the US.(JP/ Prodita Sabarini)
Returning to the land may be one way to improve food security and welfare in Papua. The Jakarta Post’s Prodita Sabarini was recently among a group of journalists invited by the Britsh NGO Oxfam to examine a few of their programs in Serui and Jayawijaya regencies in Papua. Below is her report. 

Seth Jenggo Mora sits under vanilla vines in Serui, a town in Yapen Island off the northern coast of Papua that resembles a bird’s neck. He sings a Yawaunat tribe song about the perils of leaving one’s home. “If I leave and return to my village/what will I have there?” he sings. “If we go abroad, when will we become a man?”

His red lips and teeth, reddened from chewing betel nuts for more than half a century, formed a smile as he finished his song. From Yapen where Serui lie to hamlets in the central mountains of Jayawijaya, traditional songs hold a deep meaning in Papuan culture. When reporters and NGO workers visited a village in Piramid district of Jayawijaya regency, Papuan men greeted visitors with tearful alments expressing their gratefulness of having guests from faraway places.

The song that Seth sung has relevance in today’s Papua, where urbanization has taken some of the young away from the rural areas to the big cities, leaving the traditional farms neglected.

As indigenous Papuans trail behind in education and economic power compared to migrants from Sulawesi, Java, or Sumatra, some young people who live in the cities end up turning to petty crimes or prostitution.

A large number of residents have contracted HIV, sending the number of infected people to the roof. According to the Health Ministry, Papua has the highest number of HIV infections in Indonesia, recording 7,572 cases between 1987 and 2012.

The Central Statistics Agency (BPS) said that urbanization in Papua has increased by 3.76 percent between 2000 and 2010, when 25.96 percent of the population, or 735,629 people, lived in cities, compared to 22.2 percent a decade before.

In Papua, more than 70 percent of the people live from farming. Taking extractive industries out of the equation, agriculture contributed 25.74 percent to Papua’s gross domestic regional product (GDRP) in 2012.

The mining industry in the resource-rich province contributed 46.52 percent to Papua’s GDRP in 2012, but absorption of local workers has been low. In 2010, only 26,747 people, mostly migrants, worked in extractive industries. In Timika, more than 70 percent of the population are migrants, according to the 2010 census.

As agriculture holds an important role in the lives of indigenous Papuans, developing the local economy by empowering farmers might help realize their basic rights for sustainable livelihood, according to Rio Pangemanan from Oxfam, which has a number of programs involving farmers in Papua.

Farmers and NGO workers in Papua report that a change of eating habits, with the introduction of rice as staple food from Java and with the government programs of rice for the poor, has jeopardized the self subsistence of villages and the livelihoods of young people in Papua.

Jayawijaya Agriculture Agency head Paulus Sarira said that five years ago, 94 percent of the population consumed sweet potatoes as their main staple. “Now only around 16 percent of the people consume sweet potatoes. Some have turned to eating rice,” he told a seminar on food security in Wamena early this month.

Chris Manuputty, the special assistant to the Jayawijaya regent for governance and social welfare, said that the unchecked change of eating habits from sweet potatoes to rice might lead to a food crisis in Wamena in the coming years.

Petrus Wenda, 70, a farmer from Yonggime, a hamlet in Piramid district in Jayawijaya, is one of the local farmers who mourn the loss of young people from his village. In his sweet potato farm in the Baliem Valley of Jayawijaya, Petrus told visiting reporters that sweet potatoes were part of his culture. Small framed, Petrus became animated in telling the story of the benefits of sweet potatoes, or hipere in the local language.

He stepped back and jumped over an irrigation ditch to better express his feelings. His voice became louder and his movements became more animated. "See my right arm? I can defeat five men with this,” he said while stretching his right arm. “See my left arm? I can defeat five more with this,” he said, reaching out his hand. Petrus then stretched his right leg and said “I can kick with this”, displaying how hipere made him strong and healthy. “Rice tastes good but it makes your stomach ill,” he said.

There is a reason why Petrus is so passionate about sweet potatoes. According to him and other elders, the introduction of rice has made young people leave the villages for the city to earn money so they can buy rice instead of preparing their land for the women to grow sweet potatoes.

 “A lot of young people go to the city and become robbers. They live there [in cities] and they end up dead,” Petrus said. “Now young people don’t want to plant sweet potatoes. All of them think they can make money in the city. In fact, the money is here,” Petrus said.


3) Military Tribunal Law Overhaul Needed to Hold Soldiers to Account, Critics Say
Carlos Paath | March 27, 2013
Rights activists are demanding immediate changes to the 1997 Law on Military Tribunals, in the wake of a deadly attack on police detainees that some have blamed on the Army’s Special Forces. 

Haris Azhar, the coordinator of the Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (Kontras), said that amending the law was necessary to allow armed forces personnel accused of criminal offenses to stand trial in a civilian court rather than a military tribunal. 

“Revising the law on military tribunals is an essential part of the reform process in the military and the judiciary,” he said. 

“As it currently stands, the law doesn’t allow for servicemen to face justice in a criminal court, an anti-corruption court or a human rights tribunal,” he added. 

Haris said Kontras had recorded 87 cases of violence by military personnel against civilians since 2004, none of which resulted in criminal charges against the offenders. 

“The perpetrators of these crimes and acts of violence were all tried in a military tribunal, even though none of the offenses was committed in the course of their duties,” he said. 

He added the problem with military tribunals was that the perpetrators tended to receive more lenient punishment than a criminal court would mete out. 

“It puts them beyond the reach of the law and enforces the military’s culture of impunity,” he said. 

Aziz Syamsuddin, a member of the House of Representatives’ Commission III, which oversees legal affairs, said legislators were open to discussing amendments to the 1997 law, but were still waiting for the government to submit the draft. 

“Amendments to that law have been needed for a long time. At one point we even formed a special committee of legislators from House Commission III and II [on domestic affairs] to discuss it,” he said. 

He added that most legislators also agreed with the need to try military personnel in a civilian court if their offenses warranted it. 

Hendardi, the head of the Setara Institute, a democracy watchdog, said the law in its current form “makes the military untouchable by criminal law statutes.” 

“If a soldier kills someone as part of his duty, there’s no question that he should go before a military tribunal,” he said, 

“But how can you justify a military tribunal if he attacks a police detention center and kills the inmates

No comments:

Post a Comment