Wednesday, December 17, 2014

1) Human rights chair has 'deep concerns' about police abuses in Indonesia's Papua province

2) Indonesian president committed to Papuan rights: commissioner 
3) Papua Questions Must Be Answered for the Sake of Security
4) Military plans for Papua a worry

5) Investigation of Paniai incident should be handled by Komnas HAM

1) Human rights chair has 'deep concerns' about police abuses in Indonesia's Papua province

The chair of the Indonesian National Commission on Human Rights has blamed police abuses in Papua province on the failure of the force to "adapt" to a democratic Indonesia.
Dr Hafid Abbas said he is "deeply concerned" by reports of police using excessive force in the troubled province, which has a long history of violent civil unrest, and he has raised his concerns with new president, Joko Widodo.
Five people died from gunshot wounds after a clash on December 8 between security forces and protestors in the Papuan town of Enarotali.
Police and military personnel fired live ammunition at about 800 demonstrators, including women and children, according to Human Rights Watch.
Meanwhile, a report this week by Kontras, an Indonesian rights NGO, found that 27 of the 67 human rights violations reported in Papua this year were committed by police.
"That's my deep concern - the excessive force by the police," Dr Abbas told the ABC's Pacific Beat program.
"The police [spent] 30 years under [former president and dictator] Suharto, 32 years under the military system. The separation of military and police was made just over a decade ago, so it's in transition.
"The mindset of the police has not comprehensively moved from the old system, the old paradigm, the old habits to the new one.
"Indonesia now is a new Indonesia. We have democratised our system. We transformed our system from an authoritarian regime to democracy.
"The police have not yet fully recovered and have not fully adapted to the new Indonesia."

Province faced decade-long insurgency

Under Suharto's rule from 1965 to 1998, the country's armed forces committed numerous human rights abuses in the provinces of Aceh and Papua, as well as in East Timor.
A separatist insurgency has been waged for decades in Papua, Indonesia's eastern-most island and home to one of the world's biggest copper mines.
President Widodo, who visited the province during his election campaign, has pledged to deliver a more equitable share of the province's mineral resources to its people, most of whom live in poverty.
"We cannot create security without development, because people need hospitals, people need electricity, need water, need transportation," Dr Abbas said.
He said he shared his concerns with the president before the violence last week.
"We discussed the need to reform the police and I had the very strong impression from the new president, the new administration, there's quite a strong commitment," Dr Abbas said.
"There should not be any violence. There should be appropriate justice. We need to solve the existing human rights and the past human rights cases in Papua."
President Widodo plans to visit the province next week to celebrate Christmas with the Papuan people, according to the Jakarta Post, despite calls from local church leaders for him to cancel because of the recent violence.
2) Indonesian president committed to Papuan rights: commissioner 

Updated 17 December 2014, 17:43 AEDT

The head of Indonesia's Human Rights Commission says he's confident the new president is committed to addressing human rights abuses in Papua Province.
Indonesia's police and military are often those accused of being behind human rights abuses, by using excessive force.
Only this week, a new report revealed that police were involved in nearly half of all of the human rights violations reported in Papua.
Dr Hafid Abbas says President Joko Widodo is aware that the country's police force needs to be reformed.
Meanwhile, he's sent a team to investigate the latest incidence of violence, where police are alleged to have shot at a crowd of West Papuan protesters, killing five.
Dr Hafid joined me in the studio a short time ago.
Presenter: Catherine Graue
Speaker: Dr Hafid Abbas, chairman of Indonesia's Human Rights Commission


3) Papua Questions Must Be Answered for the Sake of Security

Presidential Pledge: Joko Widodo’s pre-election commitment to resolving tensions in the province will be tested
Tensions in Papua erupted again recently following the fatal shooting which killed at least four people and injured more than 20. The military and the National Police are involved in a “diplomatic spat” as to who is responsible for the incidents faced with calls for a fact finding team to investigate the case.
National Police chief Gen. Sutarman has said police are not responsible for the deadly shooting by security forces. While Gen. Moeldoko, chief of the Indonesian Military (TNI), said the investigation would be left to police, but declined to comment on reports soldiers had opened fire on demonstrators.
The TNI chief was reported as saying that there had been gunfire not only from the ground, but also from above — a statement repeated by Tedjo Edhy Purdijatno, coordinating minister for political, legal and security affairs.
There has been no clear signal that the TNI and the National Police are on the same side, at least as of now, to begin investigating what has been described as the “permanent turbulence” in Papua.
What we know from the outset is President Joko Widodo’s election pledge to resolve prolonged tensions between civilians and security forces in the restive province where armed separatists have launched small-scale insurgencies since Indonesia annexed Papua in 1969.
The recent fatal shooting can be seen as the latest of the prolonged tension.
Failure to properly investigate the incident will erode chances of peace, security and stability in the resource rich region.
Tedjo Edhy Purdijatno was quick to step in, saying the public should not draw premature conclusions or blame security forces.
Tedjo’s comment is a classic statement from a government official, as if he is trying to avoid giving the impression that the security forces is in any way responsible for the incident.
The death of four people would not have been possible if it was not for the firing of live bullets from the security forces, whether that be the TNI or the police.
Primary cause
Separatism, if this is indeed the Papuans’ primary cause, remains of concern for the Indonesian government when tensions occasionally spill over in to low-level violence involving security forces.
A small and poorly equipped group known as the Free Papuan Movement (Gerakan Papua Merdeka) has continued to fight for independence since the region was incorporated into Indonesia.
To retain full control of the province’s substantial mineral wealth, the government in Jakarta has maintained a hard-line stance, carrying out periodic security crackdowns in the province aimed particularly at wiping out, perhaps for good, the separatist sentiment.
Regardless of how the Papuan issue is to be categorized — whether it be separatism, economic development or human rights — human right groups continue to perceive the problem from the aspect of government inability, if not lack of political will, to address the issue properly.
They feared that the incident may lead to the increasing military presence in Indonesia’s easternmost region and this may led to an era of renewed violence.
Now, it is up to the government in Jakarta to define and categorize the problem.
Papua is a complex and multi-dimensional regional issue where the causes of the issue cannot be seen in isolation from one another.
Such a line of thinking can also be applied to the way the governmental deals with Papua.
Many tend to see Papua as solely a political issue, while others strongly believed it is a mix of political, social, economic and security issues.
This suggests that unless a comprehensive negotiated political settlement is reached, the Papua question will continue to pose an internal security problem for Indonesia.
National security encompasses a wide spectrum where each aspect of security must be supported and reinforced by each other.
If one is to see Papua from a such an angle, then it is not wrong to believe that Papua, with all of its attributes, is a national security issue specifically — which in turn justifies security forces, either the TNI or the National Police (if not both), to act to protect the essential elements of national security.
According to international affairs professor Robert Jervis, national security is the primacy of the security of the state and its sovereignty, while philosopher John Locke thought security is best focused on territorial integrity and on the lives, liberties and property of citizens.
Human rights groups in the region tend to adhere to Locke’s reasoning when they protest the policy of the security forces, which is not necessarily wrong.
But since Papua carries the highest political and security risk in Indonesia, the actions of either the military or national police in cracking down what they perceive as destructive movement against national security is well suited to the state.
It is what the realists seem to favor, rather than a minimalist state where the rights and liberties of the citizens are prioritized over the national interests.
Security threats coming from non-state actors should not be ignored by the state security apparatus, if such a threat is to cause a nation’s long-term insecurity.
In order for the voices of the human right groups to be well heard, well received and supported by the state — and so they are not to be perceived as consistently contrary to the government — perhaps it is not an exaggeration for them to also air the idea of liberalist perspective of national security.
That is, national security is secured when there is cooperation and interdependence among the military and national police to protect the region of Papua.
The military and the national police have acted according to their respective laws. But when it comes to addressing the Papuan question, collective security or cooperative security may be the best method  to jointly and effectively deal with the Papuan question.
This would help to avoid the possibility of further “diplomatic spats” between the military and the police.
In short, the Papuan question is a security as well as specifically a political issue.
It is therefore important for President Joko’s government to adopt approaches that have never been tested in the past.
He should have the expertise and sense to effectively refocus the military and the national police to be aware of the importance of sustaining security in Papua through some kind of regular, systematic and synchronized joint patrol in the area.
If tensions are to remain high in Papua and thus jeopardize the security of the entire state, it is the responsibility of the military and national police to address the problem efficiently.
The core of the Papua question is security, which carries itself a combination of political, social and economic elements.
Bantarto Bandoro is senior lecturer at the Indonesian Defense University’s School of Defense Strategy, in Sentul, Bogor


4) Military plans for Papua a worry

The head of the newly formed United Liberation Movement for West Papua says the nature of Indonesia's deployment of security forces to the Papua region indicates it's a war zone.
Octo Mote says current killings and human rights abuses in Papua region indicate that Indonesia still takes a hardline militaristic approach to daily issues there.
Indonesia's new president, Widodo, is facing criticism for various national defence appointments of former or current generals with links to atrocities.
Mr Mote says the allocation of so many generals to command positions in Papua is out of proportion to its small population.
"This is the island where you get the most of Indonesian generals will be based. Because two major generals for the commander of the armed forces and police; and then two other brigadier generals for chief of staff police and military; and then you have a brigadier general who leads the battalions."

5) Investigation of Paniai incident should be handled by Komnas HAM
Statement by the LP3BH:

  According to initial information received by the National Human Rights Commission (KomnasHAM) and the Papuan Customary Council in
Mepago as well as the churches in the area, it is evident that the shooting that led to the deaths of the four civilians in the district
of Paniai was committed by members of a TNI - Indonesian Army - team from Timsus-753 based in the area.

  This means that, in my opinion, in accordance with the laws in force in Indonesia regarding basic human rights, this falls within the
authority of the National Human Rights Commission which should investigate this case of gross violation of human rights. This is in accordance with Law 39/1999 on Basic Human Rights and Law 26/2000 on Human Rights Courts as well as Presidential Decision No
50 1993 regarding KomnasHAM.  This means that the leadership of KomnasHAM should immediately set
up a commission to investigate this case of gross violation of human rights. I would therefore like to urge KomnasHAM, acting in co-ordination with the Attorney General's office, to conduct investigations into this incident. This is because it is very clear that a gross violation of human rights occurred when these Papuan civilians were shot in Paniai.

  In this case, the KomnasHAM would be acting in accordance with Article 45 of Law 21/2001 regarding Special Autonomy for the Province
of Papua. This is because it is necessary to ensure that the perpetrators should be put on trial for shooting civilians in an
incident which can be categorized as a gross violation of human rights.   Moreover, it is the case that KomnasHAM, in coordination with the
Supreme Court of the Republic of Indonesia, should set up a human rights court in the Land of Papua. This would mean that the purposes
as stipulated  in the above-mentioned Law on Special Autonomy for Papua would be realised.

Statement by the Executive-Director of the LP3BH-Manokwari, Yan
Christian Warinussy on 15 December 2014.
[Translated by Carmel Budiardjo]

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