Tuesday, June 30, 2020

1) Gus Dur’s Yenny Wahid says flying Morning Star flag not an act of treason


2) Lawmaker wants social, cultural factors considered in Papua treason cases
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1)  Gus Dur’s Yenny Wahid says flying Morning Star flag not an act of treason

Kompas.com – June 26, 2020




Miniature Morning Star flags seized at by airport security at Rendani Manokwari Airport – September 2, 2019 (Kompas)

Devina Halim, Jakarta – Wahid Foundation Director Yenny Wahid believes that flying the Morning Star flag is not an act of makar (treason, subversion, rebellion) and that the Papuan people have a special right to use regional symbols as enshrined under law.
Wahid revealed this during a virtual discussion titled Papuan student protest actions against discrimination end in makar trials, on Thursday June 25.
“I think that everyone [here] agrees that what’s called flying the Morning Star flag is not makar”, said Wahid.
Wahid explained that under Law Number 35/2008 on Special Autonomy for Papua Province – which was enacted before Papua was split into Papua and West Papua provinces – stipulates that Papuans can have a regional symbol in the form of a flag.
“Article 2 says that Papua has a special right to use a regional symbol. In this case the [Morning Star] flag is a cultural symbol from Papua”, said Wahid.
Article 2 Paragraph 2 reads;
“Papua province can have a regional symbol as a grand banner and cultural symbol for the splendor of the identity of the Papuan people in the form of a regional flag and regional anthem [but] which cannot be positioned as a symbol of sovereignty.”
She then linked this with what was once said by her father, Indonesia’s forth president the late Abdurrahman Wahid or Gus Dur.
“Put simply as Gus Dur said, what’s called a soccer club even has a flag, moreover certain sub-ethnic communities in Indonesian society do of course have the right”, she said.
In her view, there is no problem with flying the Morning Star flag as long as it is not seen as a political flag. Despite this, the flying of the flag is still seen as an act of makar by the police.
[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was “Yenny Wahid Nilai Pengibaran Bendera Bintang Kejora Bukan Aksi Makar”.]

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2) Lawmaker wants social, cultural factors considered in Papua treason cases

Kompas.com – June 29, 2020
Tsarina Maharani, Jakarta – House of Representatives (DPR) Commission III member Taufik Basari from the National Democratic Party (Nasdem) has criticised the sentences demanded by the Balikpapan state prosecutor in a recent case of alleged makar (treason, subversion, rebellion) over the Morning Star flag being flown by Papuans.
This is because the sentences handed down by the judges at the Balikpapan District Court against seven Papuan defendants on June 17 were far lighter than those demanded by the prosecution.
“The sentences demanded were very high, but it turned out that the sentences were far [lower] than those demanded”, said Basari during a working meeting with the Attorney General at the parliamentary complex in Senayan, Jakarta, on Monday June 29.
Basari has asked Attorney General ST Burhanuddin to conduct an evaluation of the Balikpapan prosecutor’s sentence demand.
Basari says that there are many aspects which should be considered by prosecutors, especially in cases related to makar as a result of flying the Morning Star flag.
Basari cited cultural and sociological aspects that must be considered. “A non-legal approach is important”, he said.
“In the future if there are similar cases, about flying this flag, freedom of expression, Gus Dur’s (former president Abdurrahman Wahid) ideas on flying the flag could be used as a reference”, he said.
Responding to this, Burhanuddin said that his office would evaluate the methods used in formulating sentence demands in cases of alleged makar related to Papuans flying the Morning Star flag.
Burhanuddin said that the AGO does indeed have high standards in prosecuting cases of makar.
Notes
In 2000 Indonesia’s fourth president Abdurrahman “Gus Dur” Wahid granted special autonomy to Papua – then made up of a single province – and lifted the ban on the Morning Star flag and the “Hai Tanahku Papua” anthem. The “Papua Spring” as it was known ended with the Abdurrahman’s removal by the military and New Order forces in 2001 and his replacement by president Megawati Sukarnoputri who took hardline approach toward any expression of independence. Her successor, president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, restored the ban on the Morning Star flag through a 2007 presidential regulation.
[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was “Vonis Terdakwa Kasus Makar di Balikpapan Jauh Lebih Rendah daripada Tuntutan, Jaksa Agung Diminta Evaluasi”.]

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