Tuesday, January 12, 2016

1) CPJ. Indonesia denies media visa for France 24 reporter


2) Indonesia Urged to Lift Ban on French Journalist After Papua Documentary
3) RSF URGES INDONESIA TO LIFT BAN ON FRENCH REPORTER CYRIL PAYEN

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Committee to Protect Journalists
1) CPJ. Indonesia denies media visa for France 24 reporter
Bangkok, January 12, 2016 - The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns Indonesia's refusal to issue a media visa to French journalist Cyril Payen. The Bangkok-based senior reporter for France 24 television received notice of the denial from Indonesia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs without explanation on Friday, he told CPJ.
The Indonesian government's decision follows the broadcast of Payen's documentary, "The forgotten war in Papua." The film, broadcast by France 24 on October 18, examined allegations of state-sponsored human rights abuses and conflict-related casualties over the past 25 years in the country's eastern Papuan provinces.
President Joko Widodo announced last May that his government would allow foreign journalists to report unrestricted from Papua, breaking a decades-long virtual blackout on international news coverage of the restive region. Payen applied for and received the required media permits to report from Papua, and reported freely from the region for about a week last July, he told CPJ.
"Indonesia's move to deny France 24 reporter Cyril Payen a journalistic visa smacks of retaliation for his critical reporting," said Shawn W. Crispin, CPJ's senior Southeast Asia representative. "President Widodo should make good on his previous pledge to improve access to Indonesia for foreign journalists by reversing this arbitrary and ill-conceived decision."
CPJ advocated for the removal of the foreign media restrictions as an important precondition for Widodo to achieve his campaign vow to bring peace and prosperity to Papua and West Papua provinces. The region has been locked in a long-simmering struggle between Indonesian security forces and the secessionist Free Papua Movement.
Foreign journalists have been targeted for harassment under Widodo's rule. British filmmakers Rebecca Prosser and Neil Bonner were held in custody for nearly five months before being sentenced in November to two and a half months in prison for violating the terms of their tourist visas. They were first apprehended by the Indonesian navy while reporting a documentary on piracy commissioned by the magazine National Geographic.
Indonesian Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Luhut Binsar Panjaitan in November 2015 told CPJ that Widodo's administration was committed to ensuring the press has free access to Papua.

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2) Indonesia Urged to Lift Ban on French Journalist After Papua Documentary
By : Edo Karensa | on 12:49 PM January 12, 2016
Jakarta. Media freedom organization Reporters Without Borders has condemned the Indonesian government for imposing a ban on a French journalist after releasing a documentary on the conflict in Papua.
The group called on President Joko Widodo to honor his promise of opening up the restive province to foreign media.
Bangkok-based reporter Cyril Payen was able to visit Papua in mid-2015 after obtaining all the necessary authorization. But the French Ambassador in Jakarta was summoned to the Indonesian Foreign Ministry after Payen’s documentary, “Forgotten War of the Papuas,” was broadcast by France 24 on Oct. 18, 2015.
In November, Indonesian officials in Bangkok notified Payen he was now "persona non grata" in Indonesia. Last week, he was told his request for a visa to make another documentary had been rejected.
“We firmly condemn this flagrant violation of media freedom and this discrimination against an independent journalist who has committed no crime,” Benjamin Ismaïl, head of RSF’s Asia-Pacific desk, wrote in a statement.
Ismail said the move against Payen demonstrates the election promise of President Joko Widodo to open up Papua to foreign journalists was deceptive.
“We urge him to keep this promise and to let foreign journalists do their job without having to fear surveillance, censorship or reprisals by the authorities,” he added.
Foreign journalists have long complained of the lengthy and complicated process to obtain permits to report on Papua, the only place in the country where such permission is required.
Permit issuance is rare with each request reviewed by over a dozen government agencies, including the State Intelligence Agency (BIN) and the Indonesian military.
Indonesian ranked 138th from 180 countries in the 2015 Reporters Without Borders press freedom index with a rating of 40.99, behind Thailand, Timor Leste and Brunei.
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HTTP://EN.RSF.ORG/INDONESIA-RSF-URGES-INDONESIA-TO-LIFT-BAN-ON-11-01-2016,48723.HTML

3) RSF URGES INDONESIA TO LIFT BAN ON FRENCH REPORTER CYRIL PAYEN

PUBLISHED ON MONDAY 11 JANUARY 2016.
Reporters Without Borders (RSF) condemns the Indonesian government’s refusal to let French journalist Cyril Payen visit Indonesia following the documentary he made about West Papua, the Indonesian half of the island of New Guinea, that France 24 broadcast last October. RSF points out that Indonesian President Joko Widodo promised to allow foreign reporters to visit West Papua.
A Bangkok-based reporter specializing in Southeast Asia, Payen was able to visit West Papua in mid-2015 after obtaining all the necessary authorizations before setting off.
But the French ambassador in Jakarta was summoned to the Indonesian foreign ministry after Payen’s documentary, entitled “Forgotten war of the Papuas,” was broadcast on 18 October.
Indonesian officials in Bangkok then told Payen in November that he was now persona non grata in Indonesia. And finally, he was notified last week that his request for a visa to make another documentary had been turned down.
We firmly condemn this flagrant violation of media freedom and this discrimination against an independent journalist who has committed no crime,” said Benjamin Ismaïl, the head of RSF’s Asia-Pacific desk.
President Joko Widodo has hereby demonstrated that his election promise to open up West Papua to foreign journalists was pure deception. We urge him to keep this promise and to let foreign journalists do their job without having to fear surveillance, censorship or reprisals by the authorities.
Foreign journalists and NGOs were long denied access to West Papua, which was forcibly annexed by the Indonesian armed forces 50 years ago.
Two French journalists, Thomas Dandois and Valentine Bourrat, were arrested while preparing a report there in August 2014. After being held for more than two months, they were sentenced on 24 October 2014 to two and a half months in prison for violating Indonesia’s immigration law.
It was under the same draconian law, whichRSF has repeatedly condemned, that two British journalists, Rebecca Prosser and Neil Bonner, weresentenced to two and a half months in prisonon 3 November 2015 for violating the terms of their visas.
They had already spent more than 150 days in police custody when they were finally sentenced. Travelling on tourist visas, they were arrested by the Indonesian navy on 28 May 2015 while filming a reenactment of pirates attacking an oil tanker for a documentary commissioned by National Geographic.
Indonesia is ranked 138th out of 180 countries in the 2015 Reporters Without Borders press freedom index.
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