Saturday, December 29, 2012

1) Attacks Against the Press Still a Problem in Indonesia: AJI Report

1) Attacks Against the Press Still a Problem in Indonesia: AJI Report
2) Violence and intimidation of journalists in Papua in 2012

1) Attacks Against the Press Still a Problem in Indonesia: AJI Report
Antonia Timmerman | December 29, 2012
Instances of violence against journalists dropped in 2012 despite several high-profile abuse allegations levied against the Indonesian Military (TNI) and government officials this year, according to an Alliance of Independent Journalists (AJI) report. 

The press freedom organization recorded some 56 cases where journalists were attacked, verbally threatened or had their equipment destroyed in 2012. Last year, the Legal Aid Foundation for the Press (LBH Pers) reported 96 acts of violence against journalists. 

The report documented 18 instances of physical abuse, 15 reports of verbal threats and ten cases of reporters having their equipment smashed. AJI also included instances where journalists were prevented from covering certain stories or protests, censorship of the media and the banning of websites. 

There were an additional 12 instances of violence directed at journalists working in Papua, including an attack on Oktovianus Pogau, a freelance reporter who contributes to the Jakarta Globe.

Despite the drop in numbers, AJI chairman Eko Maryadi warned that any blows to press freedom were worrying. 

In recent months, several high-profile attacks on the press grabbed headlines in Indonesia. In mid-October, a member of the Indonesian Air Force, Lt. Col. Robert Simanjuntak, was caught on video kicking and choking journalists trying to shoot photos of a downed military plane in Pekanbaru, Riau. 

One month later, journalists in Palembang claimed that members of the Indonesian Air Force smashed their equipment and choked another reporter at a demonstration in Sukarmi, Palembang. The reporters were allegedly documenting scenes of soldiers attacking protestors. 

In East Nusa Tenggara, a local government official threatened to kill a journalist over a story detailing his expense claims. The 25-member Lembata District Legislative Council had spent some Rp 2.8 billion ($290,000) on travel expenses in 2012, the Pos Kupang newspaper had reported. 

The story reportedly angered deputy chairman Yoseph Meran Lagaur enough to shout “You dare to challenge me in Lembata? I could get crazier and I will kill you,” three times during a confrontation with a reporter at a local World AIDS Day event. 

All of the incidents were common stories in Indonesia, where the TNI and the government routinely rank as the top abusers of the press, Eko said on Friday.

Abused journalists also have little hope of seeing their attackers brought to justice, Eko said. 

“So far there have been only seven cases handled by the police,” he said. “The rest were not investigated and the perpetrators were not caught.”

Eko called on the Manado Police to finish their investigation into the stabbing death of AJI member Aryono Linggotu. Aryono, a Metro Manado journalist, was stabbed to death during an argument about his motorcycle’s loud exhaust in November. 

His alleged murderer was arrested by police in late November, but progress on the case is slow, Eko said. 

“He was brutally murdered and had been stabbed 14 times, and, until today, his case, which is being handled by Manado Police, has progressed real slow,” Eko said.

The AJI is taking steps to push for a faster investigation into Aryono’s death.

The report also found that gender-based discrimination was still a significant issue in Indonesian newsrooms, including instances of sexual assaults and rules prohibiting women from covering criminal cases or fires.
2) Violence and intimidation of journalists in Papua in 2012

JUBI, 27 December 2012

The Alliance of Independent Journalists (AJI) has recorded twelve cases of violence and intimidation against journalists Papua  during 2012,which is a significant increase as compared with 2011, when there were seven cases.

The first case was violence and intimidation against journalists in Papua and West Papua wanting to cover the trial of Forkorus Yaboisembut and his colleagues at the district court in Jayapura on 8 February when they were  physically intimidated, pulled and pushed as they were entering the courtroom. Those responsible were members of the police force in Jayapura. The victims were: Katerina Litha of Radio KBR 68 H Jakarta. Robert Vanwi of  Suara Pemnaharuan, Jakarta, Josrul Sattuan of TV One, Irfan of Bintang Papua, and Cunding Levi of Tempo.

The second case was against Radang Sorong, a journalist with Cahaja Papua  and Paskalis  of Media Papua, from February until May in West Papua by the police chief of Manokwari, who were preventing journalists from reporting expressions of support for dialogue and a referendum in Papua. Three local journalists said that they had been  under pressure while writing critical reports about political matters, law and human rights violations and political prisoners. One of the journalists from Manokwari was instructed to restrict his reporting about political, legal matters and human rights violations.

The third case was in Abepura on 20 March when Josrul from TV One, Marcel from Media Indonesia, Irfan from Bintang Papua and Andi Irfan of Radio KBR 68 H Jakarta were attacked by members of KNPB, the National Committee of West Papua who were involved in an action outside the Post Office in Abepura. On a separate occasion, outside Polimak, Jayapura, Timbar Gultom of  Papua Pos was ordered to identify himself. When he replied that he  was from Papua Pos,  the people did not believe him and started chasing him. He was able to hide in a house nearby.

The fifth case  was when three journalists in the district of Jayapura, Yance of Radio Kenambai Ombar, Putu of KBR 68 H Jakarta and Suparti of Cenderawasih Pos were verbally intimidated and chased  by some members of the KNPB.on 20 March.

The sixth case was when a journalist from TV One, Josrul Sattuan was beaten by an unidentified person when he was trying to report on the situation in Jayapura following a series of  violent incidents and shooting incidents that occurred in various in places in Jayapura. The physical attack occurred at Abepura Circle on Thursday evening on 7th June.

The seventh case was when a journalist from Metro TV, Abdul Muin who was in Manokwari was attacked by someone from the Fishing Service in who intimidated him with an air gun.The victim told JUBI that the incident started when a member of the Fishing Service sent him a brief message on 8th June asking him and other journalists to cover an incident  of bombing a hoard of fish by a group of  people who were being held in the Manokwari Prison.

The eighth case occurred in Timika on 20 September.The victim was Mohammad Yamin, a contributor to  RCTI, Simson Sambuari of Metro TV, Husyen Opa of Salam Papua and the photographer for Antara News Agency, and David Lalang of Salam Papua.They were prevented from recording some events in the Pamako Harbour.

The ninth case involved Oktavianus  Pogau of and stringer for Jakarta Globe.  This occurred in Manokwari on 22 October. Okto were beaten up by several members of the police force, some in uniforms and others  not wearing their uniforms, who were battling with members of the KNPB in Manokwari.  The victims was thought to be part of a crowd of people involved in a demonstration, even though they had clearly identified themselves.

The tenth case was  when Sayied Syech Boften of Papua Barat Pos was attacked on 1 November by a person who identified himself as a member of the local legislative assembly, Hendrik G. Wairara. The victim was threatened and intimidated among others things by phone. The victim was warned to stop reporting about corruption in a project  involving the extension of the electrification system  and the maintenance of BBM machinery in Raja Ampat District. On the same day, the assistant of the chairman of the the local DPRD flew into a rage while he was at the editorial office of Papua Barat Pos.

The eleventh case occurred on 8 November when Esau Miram of Cenderawasih Pos  was intimidated as he was reporting on a gathering at the office of the Commander of the   XVII Nilitary Command and all the heads of departments in Papua.They were accused of being terrorists even though Esau had shown his  identity card as a journalist.

The twelfth case occurred on 1 December  when Benny Mawel of JUBI was interrogated by members of the police force  near Abepura Circle  for reporting about a large crowd of people who were carrying banners while marching from Abepura to Waena. Benny showed his journalist identity card, but a group of around ten people accused him of not being a journalist. As he was travelling on his motorbike  towards a repair centre, he was followed by some people there who starting asking whether he knew where Benny was.

Victor Mambor added the following: AJI reported two cases, the shooting of a Twin Otter  plane belonging to Trigana Air by an unidantified person in Mulia Airfield, Puncak Jaya on 8th April which killed Leiron Kogoya  who was first said to be a journalist of Papua Pos, Nabire and then the arrest and deportation of a Czech man, Petra Zamencnik who identified himself as a journalist with On 9 February, there was inconsistently about the status of the victim, whether he was a journalist or not, or whether he was involved in journalistic activities.

Suroso also confirmed that when the identity of Leiron  was checked, it turns out that  he was not at the time engaged in journalistic activities.but had gone to Mulia for personal reasons. Leiron had not registered himself as a journalist of  Papua Pos Nabire.  As regards Petr Zamencnik. he was unable to prove that he was a journalist. AJI Jayapura  sought confirmation with about his status  and he was described as being the editor for financial affairs in the Czech Republic.

[Translated by TAPOL]

Friday, December 28, 2012

1) Papua Police investigate attack on journalist

1) Papua Police investigate attack on journalist

2) Authorities still investigating shooting of Papua fishermen

3) Seven Papuan fisherman shot by the TNI


1) Papua Police investigate attack on journalist

Fri, December 28 2012 17:00 | 173 Views
Jayapura, Papua (ANTARA News) - Papua Police are investigating an attack on a journalist in Sorong, West Papua.

"My officers in Sorong, West Papua, have received the report about the incident and are now investigating it," the Papua regional police command spokesman, Adjunct Senior Commissioner I Gede Sumerta, said here on Friday.

The attack on journalist Resnal Umpain occurred at around 10.20pm at Jalan Rumberpon in Sorong.

Resnal, a resident of Jalan Viktori Belakang Yon 752 in Sorong, was beaten up by a 20-year-old man, identified as WL, while the journalist was in a car.

"According to the victim, WL came up to him and hit him without any provocation," Sumerta said.

He stated that the police would soon summon witnesses in order to solve the case.

Meanwhile, the chief of the Jayapura chapter of Aliansi Jurnalis Indonesia (AJI), Victor Mambor, noted that 12 cases of attacks on journalists in Papua and West Papua provinces had been recorded so far this year.

He told ANTARA here on Friday that four of the cases took place in West Papua, while the rest happened in Papua.

"Most of the attacks were in the form of verbal and physical intimidation, including threats, insults, pelting stones, chasing and hitting," Victor explained.

"AJI Jayapura has received two reports of threats sent through SMS and by phone from Manokwari and Sorong in West Papua," he added. 

Meanwhile, the head of said the perpetrators were 'either from the police force, like in the 2010-11 incidents, or are simply demonstrators'.

"AJI Jayapura has recorded two cases that have the potential to disrupt press freedom, namely the death of Leiron Kogoya and the deportation of Petr Zamenick, a Czech national who claimed to be a journalist, in February," he noted.

"However, the two cases are yet to be confirmed as acts of violence against journalists, due to confusion over whether the victims were really journalists and whether the incidents occurred while they were on duty," added.
Editor: Priyambodo RH

2) Authorities still investigating shooting of Papua fishermen

Thu, December 27 2012 20:02 | 102 Views

Jayapura (ANTARA News) - The military and police said they are still investigating recent shooting of fishermen leaving four killed and three other injured in the regency of Raja Ampat, West Papua. 

Chief of the Cendrawasih Military Command Maj. Gen. Christian Zebua said the military together with the police are set to uncover the case. 

"We are still in the process of investigations to find out suspects and motives of the shooting," Christian told ANTARA news agency here on Friday. 

The military and police are looking into possibility of involvement of military or police members, he said. 

"We would not condone murder what ever the reason and motives," he said , adding, the military is taught to protect the people.

He promised to act firmly against any military men found involved in the shooting at the village of Waigama on the island of Papan, the regency of Raja Ampat, five hours away by mator boat from Misool Utara.

The dead victims were identified as La Tula (13), La Ninu (55), La Jaka (30), and La Edi (20), and the three injured are La Anu (20), La Diri (20) and La Udin (30), all from the island of Buaya off the city of Sorong.(*)
Editor: Heru
3) Seven Papuan fisherman shot by the TNI
Bintang Papua, 28 December 2012

Seven Papuan fisherman were shot by members of the TNI (Indonesian army) near Pulau Papan district, Misol Perairan Raja Apat, West Papua. It is not clear why they were shot, but one TNI soldier is now being questioned by POM, the military police in Puncak Rafidin.

The commander of 1704/Sorong, Lieut-Col. Rachman Zulkarnain refused to make any comment about the incident but he did not deny that a TNI solider was being interrogated by the military police. They were still trying to find out more about those responsible for the shooting. 'I want the process to continue , until we can decide who should be charged for the incident,' said Zulkarnain.

A spokesman for  the Cenderawasih XVII military command  also said that a member of the army is being interrogated intensively by POM.  The matter must be handled through legal channels, he said. He said that the commander would ensure that the person responsible would be firmly dealt with.

The spokesman also said that  the person who did the shooting was thought to be a member of Babinsa Koramil (low level military command personnel ) and one of those responsible has been identified as Praka BJ.

Head of public relations of the military command, I Gede Sumerta Jaja told the press that the case was still being investigated, while attention was at present concentrated on finding one of the victims.

One of the victims is at present being treated at Sorong Hospital  but he is not yet fit enough to be asked to make a statement. 'We must respect his rights and not try to force him to make a statement,' he said.

The bodies of four of the victims were discovered in a state of decomposition on Wednesday, La Nuni, 55, La Jaka, 30, La Edi, 20 and La Diri, 20. A fifth victim , La Ful, 13 is still being sought by a TNI/Police unit. The bodies were under water for almost a week but officials were able to identify them when they were  found.

Two other fisherman have also been found alive and are now being treated in hospital.

A representative of the military police met the families of the victims  and members of South Sulawesi  Families Association to continue with the process of identifying all the victims to finalise the process of identification and then moving them away from the area. The Association has called on the military command to make a statement, following information that indicated that the military and police were responsible for the shooting but the military have as yet failed to clarify the case. A spokesman of the Association said that they were still trying find other victims of the shooting.

Translated by TAPOL

Thursday, December 27, 2012

1) Amid Papua strife, Indonesia sets up diplomatic ties with Nauru

2) Indonesia, Nauru Form Diplomatic Ties


RNZI Posted at 04:01 on 27 December, 2012 UTC
Indonesia has established diplomatic ties with Nauru, in what Jakarta says is an effort to expand opportunities and strengthen links between the two countries.
Nauru is the 183rd nation, out of 193 UN members states, with which Indonesia has established diplomatic relations after setting up links with Tuvalu earlier this year.
Observers have told the Jakarta Globe that the move is a bold measure to suppress support for the separation of Papua from Indonesia at a time when the Pacific Islands Forum appears to be growing in international stature.
Some Pacific countries, especially Vanuatu, have expressed support for Papua ’s right to self-determination as Jakarta stands accused of serious human rights abuses to exercise its control over the area.

2) Indonesia, Nauru Form Diplomatic Ties

Erwida Maulia | December 26, 2012
Indonesia has established diplomatic ties with the South Pacific island nation of Nauru, in what the Indonesian government said is an effort to expand opportunities and strengthen links between the two countries. 

Observers, meanwhile, praised the move as a bold measure to suppress support for the separation of Papua from Indonesia at a time when the Pacific Islands Forum, of which Nauru is a member, appears to be growing in international stature. 

Desra Percaya, Indonesia’s permanent representative to the United Nations, said he expected the opening of diplomatic relations would lead to more opportunities and deepen cooperation in various sectors, especially in the fields of climate change, disaster risk management and South-South cooperation. 

Nauru is the 183rd nation, out of 193 UN members states, with which Indonesia has established diplomatic relations. Indonesia established diplomatic ties with Botswana, Tuvalu and Haiti earlier this year. 

Desra and Nauru’s permanent representative to the United Nations, Marlene Moses, marked the occasion with the signing of a joint communique in New York last Friday. 

Moses expressed hope that Indonesia would continue to help the small Pacific nation voice its needs in global environmental forums. 

“One thing that the Pacific people really remember and appreciate was when Indonesia led a discussion on a climate change resolution in a UN forum, which results in an agreement in line with the interests of Pacific countries, especially in the context of global warming, which threatens the existence of these countries,” Moses said in a statement released on the weekend. 

However, one analyst argued that of bigger interest to Indonesia was finding friends among Pacific island states, in hopes of preventing discussion in the Pacific Islands Forum about the possible independence of Papua. 

“We need to get as much support from Pacific island countries so that the issue of Papuan independence does not get bigger,” said Bantarto Bandoro, an international relations expert at Indonesian Defense University in Jakarta. 

Several Pacific island countries, especially Vanuatu, have expressed support for the independence of Papua from Indonesia, and have frequently made those views known in the forum. 

While Nauru, one of the smallest countries in the world, has been neutral on the Papuan question, experts have said the country could swing in support of independence if the majority decided to do so. 

“So it’s good that we have established formal diplomatic ties with Nauru, as we can actively persuade the country to be on our side,” Bantarto said. 

Several observers have criticized Indonesia for a lack of effort in approaching Pacific island countries for support on the Papua issue, saying Jakarta appeared to underestimate the role of the island nations on the international stage. 

However, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s attendance at the Pacific Islands Forum in September signaled the bloc’s growing importance as the United States turns its attention to Asia and the Pacific in an attempt to counter China’s regional rise.

Monday, December 24, 2012

1) IHRC Letter re latest violence

1) IHRC Letter re latest violence
2) Papua police deploy 3,793 personnel to ensure security on Christmas

1) IHRC Letter re latest violence

Indonesia Human Rights Committee,
Box 68-419,
Hon Murray Mc Cully,
Minister of Foreign Affairs,
Parliament Buidlings,
Duty Minister,
Parliament Buildings,
Fax : 04 499 0704
23 December, 2012.
Dear Mr McCully and Duty Minister,
We understand that this is a difficult time of year for you, but at the same time we are very troubled about recent grave human rights abuses in West Papua, including the killing by police of civilians, and we believe it is important to draw this situation to your attention.
We are particularly concerned because we understand that a new programme of training engagement may be about to get under way between the New Zealand police and counterparts in West Papua. If we do not speak out these grave abuses our engagement in training is likely to be taken as a sign that New Zealand approves these police practices.
Around the 15 -16 of December  Hubertus Mabel and  Natalis Alua, two young activists were allegedly shot in the village of Kurulu near Wamena by police officers of the Papua Regional Police Station.  We understand that the officers concerned were from the counter-terrorism unit, the 88 Detachment (Densus 88). Both later died from their wounds.

The reports we have  received also states that the police arrested three members of West Papua National Committee (Komite Nasional Papua Barat, KNPB)  members,  who were forced to arrange a meeting with Hubertus and Natalis. The circumstances of the deaths of the two young men is not fully clear – both were reportedly shot and stabbed - Hubertus was later found dead at Jayawijaya Public Hospital with bullet wounds and a deep stab wound.
The respected Catholic priest  Father John Djonga attempted to see Hubertus's body in the hospital but he was refused access by police. Independent witnesses state that neither man was posing a threat to police at the time of the shooting.
The Sydney Morning Herald, in reporting on the episode, records that Indonesian police not only shot the two men, but also burned down  a house in Wamena which was used as the "Tribal Council" office for community meetings.
The Sydney Morning Herald also records that this year ‘22 KNPB members have been killed; three are missing; seven have been charged with various offences and more than 200 arrested but released within three months.’
There are grave concerns that these latest killings are part of a new crack-down on separatist activity under the new chief of Papuan police, Tito Karnavian, who formerly ran counter-terrorist police unit Densus-88. 
We are aware that there have also been attacks on police posts in this area. But this can be no justification for acts of reprisal. The ‘shoot first and ask questions later’ police approach is utterly against all principles of justice and international law.
We urge you to take up this grave abuse of police power with the Indonesian authorities with urgency. 
It is essential that there be an open and transparent enquiry into all the circumstances of these latest tragic deaths.  In the meantime we respectfully suggest that the programme of training for the West Papuan police should be put on hold.
Yours sincerely,
Maire Leadbeater
(for the Indonesian Human Rights Committee)
Copy to
Hon Judith Collins,
Minister of Police,
Parliament Buidlings,


2) Papua police deploy 3,793 personnel to ensure security on Christmas

Mon, December 24 2012 03:45 | 120 Views
Jayapura (ANTARA News) - Papua Police have deployed 3,793 personnel across the districts and cities in the region to ensure security during Christmas and New Year celebrations. 

"We have stepped up security ahead of the Christmas and New Year celebrations through Operasi Lilin (Candle Operation) in the region, starting Sunday (December 23) through January 1, 2013," Papua Police spokesman Adj. Sr. Comr. I Gede Sumerta Jaya said here on Monday. 

He stated that police officers would monitor the distribution of alcoholic drinks and firecrackers "because those things often lead to problems and discomfort the public". 

"The Papua police chief has called on the region`s people to assist the police in maintaining security in the region, because safety and security are not solely the responsibility of the police," Sumerta pointed out.

Earlier, on December 12, the Papua police organised a joint rally at PTC Entrop yard, South Jayapura district, Jayapura city. 

"The National Army (TNI), Public Order Officers (Satpol PP), Transportation Service (Dishub) and Jasa Raharja, a state-owned insurance company, will all be involved in the security operation," Sumerta noted. 

"As many as 82,723 personnel, including 3,793 police officers, 15,024 TNI officials and other security agencies, as well as community members, will be deployed to ensure security during the celebrations," he said.

Papua Police chief Pol (ret.) Tito Karnavian, who acted as the rally inspector, predicted "there will be large-scale mobilization during the Christmas and New Year celebrations".

He stated that many steps would be taken during the period in anticipation of increased accidents and crimes.

Tito expressed hope that the public would cooperate with the security forces in maintaining security and peace during the celebrations.
Editor: Priyambodo RH