Monday, August 31, 2015

1) National TNI, Komnas HAM run separate probes into Mimika shooting

2) Pacific church leader condemns West Papua killings
1) National TNI, Komnas HAM run separate  probes into Mimika shooting 
Conducting its own investigation into a recent shooting in Koperapoka, Mimika regency, Papua, that claimed the lives of two civilians, the Indonesian Military (TNI) has promised to serve justice to any soldiers proven to have been involved in the incident.

While still questioning three soldiers who were arrested in connection with the incident, Army spokesperson Brig. Gen. Wuryanto said on Sunday that the Timika Military Police were also gathering statements by witnesses, including from locals, who might know how the shooting occurred.

“We cannot make any conclusions yet because it is an ongoing process. Our team is digging for information that will lead us to the complete story of how the incident happened,” Wuryanto told The Jakarta Post.

“But we will ensure that Military Court law will be strictly imposed on any soldier proven guilty,” he added.

The incident occurred in the early hours of Aug. 27 and claimed the lives of 23-year-old Imanuel Mailmaur and 23-year-old Yulianus Okoare. Two other locals were injured in the incident — 24-year old Marthinus Apokapo, who suffered a gunshot wound to the abdomen, and 25-year old Martinus Imapula, who was shot in the leg.

The District Military Command (Kodim) 1710/Timika arrested two soldiers following the shooting — First Sgt. Arshar and Chief Sgt. Makher, who were reportedly drunk when they allegedly shot the men.

Besides the two soldiers, Wuryanto said that one more soldier, identified only as Chief Pvt. G, was at the location when the shooting took place and had been detained.

“We are still examining his involvement in the matter,” Wuryanto said. “However, regardless of the ongoing process, the Cendrawasih Military Command chief [Maj. Gen. Fransen G. Siahaan] has personally apologized to the families of the victims for the incident and ensured that the TNI will be responsible for the investigation.”

Two different versions how the shooting occurred have emerged so far.

According to the Military Command (Kodam) XVII/Cendrawasih, the soldiers shot in self-defense when a mob attempted to seize their weapons after an attack on Makher.

The other story circulating among residents claims that two men, later identified as Makher and Arshar, forced their way into a venue where a party was being held and threatened people at the party.

The National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM) will also send an investigative team to clarify the stories.

Komnas HAM chief Nur Kholis said the investigative team aimed to gather evidence to get reliable information from the field as the rights body frequently came up with different findings than the government, which it publicly announces.

“Several shootings have taken place in Papua and none of them have been publicly clarified by the government,” he said. “Relevant government institutions conducting investigations into similar shootings in the past kept silent about the results without clear and transparent follow ups”.

He cited the shooting in Papua’s Paniai in December last year that claimed the lives of five locals as an example.

“The lack of transparency in investigations into several shootings in Papua has in a way encouraged more incidents to emerge. This must stop,” Nur Kholis emphasized.

2) Pacific church leader condemns West Papua killings
Updated at 4:04 pm on 31 August 2015

Pacific churches have condemned the killing of two West Papuans in a shooting involving Indonesian soldiers last week.
They have called on regional leaders to speak out against summary killings, torture and human rights abuse in the Indonesian region.
The church says reports from Timika in Mimika Regency say a group of Special Forces troops shot dead two members of the Catholic Youth Group at the Cathedral Parish of the Three Kings in Timika.
At the time the Kamoro people were performing traditional rituals.
The Council says the soldiers, who were refused entry to the area, went to their barracks, returned with weapons and fired on the group.
The General Secretary of the Pacific Council of Churches, Rev Francois Pihaatae, says the killings were uncalled for and an indication of Indonesia's contempt.
He says Pacific leaders have a duty to speak out, especially those who have invited Indonesia into the Melanesian Spearhead Group.

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