Sunday, July 1, 2018

New Amnesty International report "DON'T BOTHER, JUST LET HIM DIE": KILLING WITH IMPUNITY IN PAPUA



Amnesty International UK Press releases
02 Jul 2018, 12:01am

https://www.amnesty.org.uk/press-releases/indonesia-security-forces-unlawful-killings-going-unpunished-new-report







Indonesian security forces have unlawfully killed at least 95 people in little more than eight years in the eastern provinces of Papua and West Papua, with the majority of perpetrators never being held to account for the crimes, Amnesty International reveals in a new report today. 
The report, “Don't bother, just let him die": Killing with impunity in Papua, describes how police and soldiers have shot dead peaceful independence activists and protesters, as well as dozens of other Papuans in non-political contexts, including a mentally-disabled young man. Killings have shown no sign of letting up since President Joko ‘Jokowi’ Widodo took office in 2014, despite his promises to prioritise human rights in Papua.
Usman Hamid, Amnesty International Indonesia’s Executive Director, said:
“Papua is one of Indonesia’s black holes for human rights. This is a region where security forces have for years been allowed to kill women, men and children, with no prospects of being held to account.
“Our research reveals that almost 100 people have been unlawfully killed in little more than eight years – about one person every month. This is a serious blot on Indonesia’s human rights record.
“Now is the time to change course – unlawful killings in Papua must end. This culture of impunity within the security forces must change, and those responsible for past deaths held to account.”
The report documents at least 95 deaths in 69 incidents between January 2010 and February 2018, 56 of which took place in the context of non-independence activities, while 39 others were related to peaceful political activities such as demonstrations or raising the Papuan independence flag, the Morning Star. 
Despite the alarmingly-high death toll, Indonesian authorities have almost completely failed to hold perpetrators to account. None of them have been tried and convicted in an independent court of law, with only a handful of cases resulting in disciplinary sanctions or trials in military tribunals.
Usman Hamid said:
“The pattern of police and soldiers applying the same ruthless and deadly tactics they have used against armed groups to peaceful political activists is deeply worrying. All unlawful killings violate the right to life, a human right protected by international law and Indonesia’s constitution.
“There is a direct link between impunity and continued human rights violations. Each failure to investigate or bring those responsible to account reinforces the confidence of perpetrators that they are above the law, and fuels feelings of resentment and injustice in Papua.”
Accountability for unlawful killings in Papua
Family members of victims told Amnesty that they still want to see the perpetrators of their loved ones’ deaths brought to justice.
In the 69 incidents documented in the report, not one has been subject to a criminal investigation by an institution independent of the one whose members were suspected of committing the killing.
In 25 cases, there was no investigation at all, not even an internal one. Meanwhile, in 26 cases, the police or military claimed to have conducted internal investigations but did not make the results public.
Usman Hamid said:
“A failure by the state to ensure prompt, independent and efficient investigations into unlawful killings constitutes a separate human rights violation. Investigations along these lines are indispensable to ensuring justice and preventing the unlawful resort to lethal force in the future, and thus constitute an essential element of the State’s positive obligation to prevent the arbitrary deprivation of life.”
Unlawful killings unrelated to pro-independence activities
The majority of unlawful killings documented in Amnesty’s report occurred in the context of non-political events, unrelated to calls for independence or a referendum for freedom in Papua. These types of unlawful killings happen when the security forces deal with peaceful social protests and public disorder, when they attempt to arrest criminal suspects, or as a form of individual misconduct by security personnel.
The report describes incidents of unlawful killings as a result of misconduct by security forces that took the lives of 25 people. These include soldiers’ attacks on villages in Honelama, Wamena, on 6 June 2012, and the killing of Irwan Wenda, a mentally-disabled Papuan man, killed by a police officer after he hit the officer using a piece of sugarcane.
Unlawful killings related to political activities
Security forces have also unlawfully killed Papuans over political activities, including the issue of independence or a referendum for Papua. This type of unlawful killing has taken place when security forces deal with peaceful political protests, particularly flag-raising ceremonies or religious gatherings on commemoration dates. 
The military and the police fired shots to break up the roughly 1,000 delegates at the Third Papuan People’s Congress, a peaceful pro-independence event, killing three civilians, on 19 October 2011.
In another incident, the police and military launched a joint operation in Aimas, Sorong, on 30 April 2013 to break up peaceful evening prayers held by Isak Kalaibin, a member of a pro-independence group, during which they suspected the banned Morning Star flag would be raised. After attendees at the prayers blocked and banged on the car of the Deputy Chief of the District Police with fists and sticks, security forces opened fire into the crowd and at houses in the area, killing three people and wounding five.
Meanwhile, in Wanampompi village, Yapen Islands on 1 December 2015, the police and military personnel opened fire into a crowd at a peaceful flag-raising ceremony, killing four people.
Usman Hamid said:
“The three cases illustrate the failure of Indonesian security forces to distinguish between armed people endangering lives and peaceful activists, and between peaceful expression of opinion and assembly and acts of physical violence. The police and military must change their approach in dealing with peaceful political activities.”
Amnesty International’s recommendations
Amnesty is calling on the Indonesian authorities to ensure that all unlawful killings alleged to have been committed by Indonesian security forces are investigated promptly, independently, impartially and effectively. The investigation and any prosecutions should not be limited to direct perpetrators, but also look into any involvement of commanders, irrespective of rank.
Authorities in Indonesia must take the initiative to stop unlawful killings in Papua including by issuing and enforcing human rights compliant instructions to the military and police on the use of force, and ensuring justice and reparations for the victims and their family.
It is also crucially important to review police, military or other law enforcement officials’ tactics and the use of force and firearms during arrest, to ensure they meet international standards.


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Full report. 

Executive summary and recommendations



1. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
On the morning of 8 December 2014, hundreds of Papuan protesters gathered near the local military and police headquarters, in the town of Enarotali in Paniai District, Papua Province. The demonstration was a response to military personnel allegedly beating 11 Papuan children the day before. When protesters started throwing stones and pieces of wood at the buildings, security forces opened fire into the crowd, killing four people. At least 11 others were injured by bullets or bayonets. Witnesses told the National Human Rights Commission they saw police officers shoot a protestor at close range after he had fallen to the ground.

Several weeks later, at a national Christmas ceremony in Papua, newly elected President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo committed to bringing those responsible for the killings to justice as soon as possible. The Paniai shootings became a test for the new administration’s commitment to end pervasive impunity for serious human rights violations by security forces in Papua and throughout Indonesia. It is a test that President Jokowi’s government, like those before it, has failed.
Cases like the Paniai shootings are not uncommon in Papua. Over the two decades since Indonesia’s 1998 reforms (Reformasi) began, Amnesty International has continued to receive allegations of unlawful killings by security forces in the eastern provinces of Papua and West Papua, even as they decline across Indonesia. These killings occur mainly in the context of unnecessary or excessive use of force during mass protests, during law enforcement operations or due to misconduct by individual officials. Amnesty International has recorded 69 cases of suspected unlawful killings by security forces in Papua between January 2010 and February 2018, with 95 victims. In 34 of the cases the alleged perpetrators came from the police forces, in 23 cases they came from the military, and in 11 
cases both security forces were allegedly involved. One more case also involved the municipal police (Satuan Polisi Pamong Praja, or Satpol PP), a body under local government and tasked to enforce local regulations. Most of the victims, 85 of them, have Papuan ethnicity.

Indonesian and international groups have long raised serious concerns about unlawful killings and other serious human rights violations by security forces in Papua.The subject is a frequent topic of discussion during Indonesia’s human rights reviews by UN treaty and UN Charter based bodies.2
There is no explicit definition of unlawful killings, or "extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions" under international law. Amnesty International defines such acts as unlawful and deliberate killings carried out by order of a government or with its complicity or acquiescence, which is along the lines of descriptions provided by international experts. Extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions would under this understanding include unlawful killings both by state forces and by non-state groups
and individuals that state authorities fail to properly investigate and prosecute.All unlawful killings violate the right to life, a key human right protected by international law and Indonesia’s Constitution. Indonesia has ratified several international human rights treaties that protect the right to life, chief among them the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).

Papua is now the only region in Indonesia that has both peaceful and armed pro-independence movements. Since the end of the Soeharto government in 1998, political activists in Papua increased their demand for independence through peaceful means.The national government has been reluctant to respect their freedom of expression, arguing that their success would encourage other “secessionist” movements.A variety of armed pro-independence groupshave carried out sporadic attacks, mainly on military and police targets. They have also engaged in clear human rights abuses, including unlawful killings, abductions and hostage-taking.
Amnesty International takes no position on the political status of any province of Indonesia, including calls for independence.

Successive national governments have pledged to bring economic growth to Papua and to end human rights violations. However, they have maintained an uncompromising stance towards independence movements, whether peaceful or armed. They have limited access to Papua for international human rights observers and shown little tolerance for freedom of expression.
Based on a review of 69 cases of suspected unlawful killings by security forces in Papua between January 2010 and February 2018, Amnesty International has documented several patterns. 

First, the majority of cases, 41 of them, occurred in the context of events that were unrelated to
calls for independence or a referendum for Papua. This type of unlawful killing often happens when security forces uses excessive force to handle peaceful social protests, incidents of public disorder, and attempts to arrest criminal suspects, or as a form of misconduct by individual members of the security forces.

In a second category are killings by security forces related to the issue of independence or a referendum for Papua. This type of unlawful killing, consist of 28 cases, happens when security forces deal with peaceful political protests, particularly flag-raising ceremonies or religious gatherings on commemoration dates.

Investigations into reports of unlawful killings by security forces in Papua are rare. There is no independent, effective, and impartial mechanism to deal with public complaints about misconduct by security forces, including criminal offences involving human rights violations, leaving many victims without access to justice and reparation.
In the 69 incidents documented in this report, not one has been subject to a criminal investigation by an institution independent of the one whose members were suspected of committing the killing. In 25 cases there was no investigation at all, not even an internal one. Meanwhile, in 26 cases the police or military claimed to have conducted internal investigation but did not make the results public. In only six cases were perpetrators held accountable for the deaths.
Most families of the victims of unlawful killings by security forces in Papua told Amnesty International that they still wanted to see the perpetrators brought to justice through trials in civilian court.
Amnesty International believes that there is a direct and causal link between impunity and the commission of human rights violations. Each failure to investigate or bring those responsible to trial reinforces the confidence of perpetrators that they are indeed above the law.

Amnesty International acknowledges the complex environment law enforcement officials often find themselves in when carrying out their duty in Papua, and when being attacked they certainly have the right to self-defence. However, even in such situations they must ensure full respect for the right to life, liberty and security of persons, including those suspected of a crime. Firing without warning and firing indiscriminately at a crowd without distinction as to who presents an imminent threat to themselves
or another person and who does not, is clearly a violation of international human rights law as well as domestic legislation. And it contributes to an ever-escalating cycle of hostility and violence with an increasing risk of more lives being lost or in danger - including their own.

This report focuses only on unlawful killings committed by the security forces in Papua as Amnesty International's main mandate is to expose human rights violations. However, the organization acknowledge that there have been human rights abuses and incidents of violence, including lethal violence, committed by non-state actors in Papua and recognize that the Indonesian government's right and duty to protect its population, including police and other officials.Such protection must, however, be exercised strictly within the framework of human rights law and standards, as explained below. Amnesty International calls on all governments to apply these law and standards and refrain from human rights violations whatever the political context in which they are committed, whether in Papua, in other regions in Indonesia or globally. 



7. RECOMMENDATIONS
Despite significant reforms to both the Indonesian police and military to make them become professional and respectful of human rights, security forces are still responsible for many human rights violations in Papua and elsewhere. Some of the most serious of these violations involve the unnecessary or excessive use of force, in particular through the use of firearms, leading to fatal shootings during peaceful pro-independence protests and non-political gatherings, and while conducting security operations and arresting criminal suspects. Accountability is rare, with security personnel facing only internal disciplinary mechanisms or no consequences at all.
Amnesty International's recommendations, set out below, address a number of actors and levers but with two overarching goals: preventing killings by improving the training and tactics of security forces, while ensuring accountability through credible and independent investigations and prosecutions at all levels of responsibility. The security forces have made progress in reducing such killings across Indonesia, indicating a potential to do the same in Papua with sufficient political will.
Amnesty International's recommendations are addressed in particular to the President, Co-ordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs, the Head of the Indonesian National Police, the Chief of Indonesian Military Forces, the Minister for Law and Human Rights and the National House of People’s Representatives. Some recommendations may help foreign donors formulate support
for security sector reform or prove useful to NGOs and agencies in their work for security forces accountability.
Amnesty International recommends that the President, the Co-ordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs, and other central authorities undertake the following steps as a matter of priority: 

  • Acknowledge that the unlawful killings taking place in Papua and West Papua Provinces are serious human rights violations, including crimes under international law.
  • Ensure that all unlawful killings alleged to have been committed by Indonesian security forces are investigated promptly, independently, impartially and effectively. The investigation, and any prosecutions, should not be limited to direct perpetrators, but also look into any involvement of commanders, irrespective of rank.
  • Ensure that where sufficient admissible evidence is found, suspects are prosecuted before civilian courts in proceedings that meet international fair trial standards and do not impose the death penalty.
  • Ensure that victims and their families receive comprehensive and effective reparations in accordance with international standards.
  • Ensure that internal accountability mechanisms are restricted to disciplinary matters and any crimes involving human rights violations by officials, Including the police and military, are referred to the Public Prosecutor.
  • Conduct a thorough review of police, military and other security forces' tactics in the use of force and firearms, including during public assemblies and arrests, to ensure they meet international standards, in particular the UN Code of Conduct for Law Enforcement Officials and the UN Basic Principles on the Use of Force and Firearms by Law Enforcement Officials.
    Amnesty International recommends that the House of Representatives (DPR RI) and the Minister of Law and Human Rights take the following steps as a matter of priority:
  • Acknowledge publicly the serious problem of unlawful killings in Papua and send a clear message to all police officials in Indonesia that such killings are unacceptable and strictly prohibited at all times.
  • Reaffirm the prohibition of extrajudicial, summary and arbitrary executions, and set out guidelines for security forces to prevent them, including by recognizing them as criminal offences and providing effective remedies. 
  • Amend the Criminal Code and other laws to criminalize unnecessary or and excessive use of force in line with the UN Basic Principles on the Use of Force and Firearms by Law Enforcement Officials.
  • Amend Law 26 of 2000 on Human Rights Courts to:
o expand its jurisdiction over other crimes under international law, including individual acts of torture, extrajudicial executions and enforced disappearance.
o ensure that Komnas HAM can conduct pro-justicia inquiries effectively and submit all cases involving crimes under international law to an independent prosecutor for investigation and decisions on prosecution, without political or any other undue interference.
o ensure that Komnas HAM and victims are kept informed of the status of investigations and can seek legal review of any decision not to investigate or prosecute.
  • Revise Law 31 of 1997 on Military Tribunals so that military personnel suspected of crimes under international law are prosecuted only before independent civilian courts.
  • Set up a new police oversight mechanism or revise the mandate of existing ones, such as the National Police Commission or Komnas HAM, to ensure an independent, effective, and impartial complaints mechanism can deal with public complaints about police misconduct, including 

    criminal offences involving human rights violations. In particular, suspected criminal offences involving human rights violations must be dealt with through the criminal justice system, rather than internally and as disciplinary breaches. Although a disciplinary process may take place alongside prosecution, it must never replace bringing those suspected of human rights violations before civilian courts. The body should be operationally independent of the government, political influence and the police and have independent investigation teams to deal with complaints.
    • Repeal or else amend laws and regulations which impose restrictions on the right to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly beyond those allowed under international human rights law. In particular:
    repeal or else amend Articles 106 and 110 of Indonesia’s Criminal Code to make it consistent with international human rights law, ensuring that these articles can no longer be used to criminalize freedom of expression.
    revoke immediately Article 6 of Government Regulation No. 77 of 2007 which prohibits the display of “separatist” logos, symbols and flags.
    Amnesty International recommends that the Chief of the Indonesian National Police urgently takes the following steps:
    • Incorporate the UN Basic Principles on the Use of Force and Firearms by Law Enforcement Officials and the UN Code of Conduct for Law Enforcement Officials into internal regulations in their entirety through operational instructions and training.
    • Make public all police internal regulations about the use of force and policing public assemblies.
    • Ensure that the Police Regulations on Policing Public Assembly (No. 16/2006) and the Use of Force (No. 01/2009) are disseminated, with appropriate training.
    • Prevent unlawful killings in the future through the development of policies and instructions for policing of commemoration and other public events (including appropriate planning and preparation), training in human rights compliant policing of demonstrations, and supporting external, independent accountability mechanisms.
    • Ensure that police officers at public assemblies are clearly identifiable, including by individual identification numbers, name tags and uniforms.
    • Ensure that adequate systems and mechanisms are in place, alongside training and regulations on the use of force and firearms, to make sure that police officers apply UN standards on the use of force and firearms in their daily work. Police officers must have access to a differentiated range of police equipment, training in open hand techniques that do not require equipment, and other tactical methods.
    • Ensure that all police internal disciplinary procedures and mechanisms are clearly set out in publicly available documents and that information on internal investigation procedures, including how to make a complaint about police misconduct, is readily available to the public (including at police stations, and on the internet);
    • Publish the reports and findings of police internal investigations into allegation of police abuses in detail.
    • Ensure that any remedy under traditional settlement methods does not prevent the investigation and prosecution of crimes under international law; 

      Amnesty International recommends that the Commander of the Armed Forces urgently take the following steps:
      • Acknowledge the commission of serious human rights violations, including crimes under international law, in the form of unlawful killings in Papua and West Papua.
      • As a general rule, do not deploy military forces to police assemblies. Where troops do play such a role, ensure that they:
      o comply with the UN Basic Principles on the Use of Force and Firearms by Law Enforcement Officials and other International standards.
      o carry out their tasks with full respect for the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and expression, the rights to life, liberty and security of person, and other human rights.
      o are trained and equipped to carry them out in accordance with international human rights law and standards and that they follow instructions by police.
      • Ensure that all unlawful killings alleged to have been committed by military forces are investigated promptly, independently, impartially and effectively. The investigation, and any prosecutions, should not be limited to the direct perpetrators but also look into those with command responsibility, irrespective of rank.
      • Ensure, where there is sufficient admissible evidence, such crimes are prosecuted before civilian courts in proceedings that meet international fair trial standards and do not impose the death penalty.
      • Publish all reports and findings of internal investigations into allegations of military abuses in detail. 


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