Appeal to Indonesian President for Human Rights and Democracy
On 10 December 2011, FI signed a joint letter of concern to the President of Indonesia about the severe human rights violations committed by the Indonesian security forces against peaceful participants of the “Third Papuan People’s Congress” in Abepura, Jayapura City, on 19 October 2011.
This gathering of about 4,000 people was held peacefully from 17 to 19 October 2011, under the watch of the Indonesian security forces. One hour after the congress concluded peacefully, police and military forces dispersed the remaining participants with unnecessary and excessive use of violence.
According to a preliminary report by the National Human Rights Commission (Komnas HAM), three participants of the congress were shot dead and 96 people were shot, kicked or beaten by the Indonesian security forces. The security forces also forcefully raided the nearby Catholic seminary and Franciscan friary, destroying property and causing fear amongst the inhabitants.
To date, only 18 police officers have received written warnings, while five were detained over seven days for violating the Police Disciplinary Code instead of being prosecuted for alleged human rights violations.
The letter requests His Excellency Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to guarantee that the perpetrators and their commanders responsible for these human rights violations will be held accountable at an Indonesian human rights court. It also urges him to use a neutral mediator to help him to engage in dialogue with Papua.
In conclusion, the Indonesian Government should fulfil its commitments to make human rights and democracy a reality for the people of Papua and West Papua.
The letter follows the recently submitted FI UPR Report on Papua which highlights concerns about human rights defenders being harrassed, intimidated and attacked by the police, the military and other security and intelligence agencies.