Papuans Behind Bars: September 2013

 

In brief

At the end of September 2013, there were at least 53 political prisoners in Papuan jails. In Waghete, a civilian was killed and four were arrested in a sweeping operation by police Mobile Brigade special  forces. There were scores of arrests of civilians and activists in relation to demonstrations celebrating the International Day of Democracy. Well-known activists were targeted in Biak and Yapen islands where processions were held to welcome the sacred water and ashes delivered by a Freedom Flotilla from Australia. In Waena, a civilian was arbitrarily detained and tortured by police.

Boas Gombo and Dipenus Wenda have both been released. There have been reported concerns for the mental health of Yohanes Borseren and Obeth Kamesrar. A report by KontraS Papua revealed pressing concerns about the health of prisoners and living conditions in Abepura prison. The parole application  by the five detainees in the case of the Wamena ammunitions store raid has been rejected, while the four detainees in the Yalengga flag-raising case are seeking remission.

Arrests

Civilian fatally shot and four arrested by Brimob officers in sweeping operation in Waghete

An article by Tabloid Jubi reported the fatal shooting of civilian Alpius Mote in Waghete by  police Mobile Brigade (Brimob) officers who were conducting a sweeping operation on 23 September. The two  officers were reportedly involved in a stop and search operation in Waghete market when they stopped two elderly men in a search for weapons. This caused protests from people who had gathered, leading to stones being thrown at the two officers. In response, the two officers fired into the crowd, causing the death of Alpius Mote, a university student, and injuring three others – Aprida Dogopia, Alex Mote and Frans Dogopia.

There were also reports that the officers targeted men with dreadlocks and beards. A statement by political prisoner Selpius Bobii described this tactic as an attack on indigenous Papuan customs. It is allegedly used by officers  to single out those they claim are ‘separatists’. The statement by Bobii also reported the arrests of four civilians following the shooting, although it is unclear if they remain in detention. Human Rights Watch has called for Indonesia to investigate the possible use of unnecessary  lethal force by police officers.

Scores arrested across Papua for celebrating the International Day of Democracy

Several Papuan human rights sources and news sites  reported that on 16 September  at least 94 people were arrested and  then released without charge as police moved to disperse demonstrations across Papua celebrating the International Day of Democracy on 15 September. Thousands of Papuans took part in the demonstrations,  which also supported Vanuatu’s intention of raising the question of West Papua’s political status at the 68th session of the  United Nations General Assembly in September.

The Papuan National police had issued a ban on demonstrations on 11 September, rejecting a notice  by the West Papua National Committee (Komite Nasional Papua Barat, KNPB) of their intention to demonstrate in several cities on 16 September, reportedly because the KNPB logo used in the notice contained a symbol of the Papuan Morning Star flag.  Sources on the ground and news sites  reported that tear gas was used in the Jayapura suburb of Waena to disperse demonstrators.

Sentani

According to a comprehensive report  by a local human rights investigator, there were two separate incidents in the Jayapura suburb of Sentani which led to the arrests of 29 people. A KNPB activist quoted in the report stated that at 07.00 Papuan time, nine demonstrators consisting of four KNPB activists and five civilians were arrested in Sentani Sektor Toladan by the Sentani Sub-District police. Other local activists reported that police  used intimidatory tactics on the peaceful demonstrators and  blockaded the demonstration at several spots in efforts to disperse the demonstration. The nine arrested were detained in Sentani Sub-District police station before being released without charge several hours later.

In a separate arrest in Sentani Sektor Gunung Merah, Jayapura Regional police arrested 20 demonstrators at approximately 07.15. The demonstrators were led by KNPB leader Alen Halitopo, who was one of the 20 people arrested. An article on the KNPB website stated that demonstrators were kicked and ill-treated by the police who confiscated items used in the demonstration. They were detained in Jayapura Regional police station for  more than an hour before being released without charge.

The KNPB  source also stated that in Sektor Prodadi the police dispersed demonstrators  who were heading towards the Old Market in Sentani. They confiscated megaphones, KNPB flags and banners.

Waena

Reports were received of two separate arrests in Waena where a total of 10 people were detained before being released without charge. The  comprehensive report mentioned above detailed the arrest of three KNPB activists – Agus Kosay, Ucak Logo and Jon Komba – at around 07.00  in front of the campus of Cenderawasih University where orations were taking place as part of the demonstration. They were released from Papua Regional police station without charge five hours later.

The West Papua online news magazine, Majalah Selangkah reported a second round of arrests at 09.00,  when a joint army and police task force arrested seven KNPB activists – Warius Warpo Wetipo, Henny Rumkorem, Uum Himan, Anton Gobay, Yas Wenda, Yufri Wenda and Rinal Wenda. Police allegedly beat the activists on arrest and confiscated their brochures and banners. Demonstrators  allegedly tried to negotiate with the security forces, who had set up blockades, before they were forcibly dispersed. Sources on the ground and news reports  stated that police  used tear gas to disperse the demonstrators in Waena. The Head of the Jayapura Regional police, Kiki Kurnia, told Tabloid Jubi that before using teargas, the security forces  gave the demonstrators five minutes to disperse as the demonstration had not been given  “permission” to go ahead by the authorities.

Taman Imbi, Jayapura

According to the same article by Majalah Selangkah, 14 KNPB activists were detained in Taman Imbi, Jayapura, before they could deliver speeches at the demonstration planned there. They were released without charge at 11.40 after being detained at Jayapura Regional police station for four hours.

Sorong

The  report mentioned above also detailed two separate arrests in Sorong where a total of 27 people were detained before being released without charge. At around 9.00, Sorong Regional police arrested 20 people, most of them KNPB activists. KNPB Sorong leader Martinus Yohami led the march towards Toko Tio. Police allegedly stopped the demonstrators and made the arrest when they unfurled a banner which stated “Indonesia Open Democratic Space in Papua, Stop the Violence.” The 20 people arrested were detained for six hours in Sorong Regional police station before being released without charge. A separate arrest  took place in front of the King Mosque in Sorong city where seven people were arrested and also detained in Sorong Regional police station. They were released at the same time as the other 20.

Nabire

Local activists reported the arrests of 14 KNPB activists in Nabire by joint army and police forces at demonstrations held on 16 September. They were reportedly beaten on arrest, with five of the activists – Otto Kudiai, Yafet Keiya, Anipa Pigai, Agustina and Yulianus Nawipa – receiving particularly severe beatings which resulted in serious injuries. Items used in the demonstration were confiscated. Upon pressure from the Head of Parliament for the Meepago Region, Habel Nawipa, the 14 activists were released from Nabire Regional police station without charge.

In Timika,  local activists reported the Mimika Regional police using intimidatory  tactics against demonstrators.  Celebrations of the International Day of Democracy also took place in Dogiyai, Yahukimo, Merauke, Timika, Manokwari and Biak, though no arrests have been reported in these areas.

Dozens of Biak and Yapen islands activists arrested in connection with planned procession welcoming Aborginal sacred water and ashes delivered by Freedom Flotilla

According to reports from human rights sources in Papua, four activists were arrested and  released in Biak, while Edison Kendi and Demianus Burumi were arrested and subsequently released in Yapen in police attempts to hinder processions on both islands. The processions were planned – on 20 September in Biak and 26 September in Yapen – to welcome the sacred water and ashes which were delivered by the well-publicised Freedom Flotilla from Aboriginal leaders in Australia.

Biak island

A report received by  email and an article posted  on the Freedom Flotilla  website described the arrest of four community leaders in Biak on 18 September. The four men – Piet Hein Manggaprouw, Klemens Rumsarwir, Yoris Berotabui and Yan Piet Mandibodibo – had arrived at the Biak Numfor Regional police station  to request an acknowledgement of their  notice to demonstrate  submitted two days earlier on 16 September. Upon arrival at the police station, they were separated into different rooms and were interrogated for 17 hours.

During the interrogation, they were threatened with charges of treason reportedly because the  notice had used a letterhead containing the logo of the pro-independence movement of the Federal Republic State of West Papua (Negara Federal Republik Papua Barat, NFRPB). Throughout their interrogation, the four men were denied food and communication with their families. Their handphones were also confiscated. At around 02.00 on 19 September, they were driven back home by a police truck guarded by three fully-armed police officers and one plainclothes officer.  Later that morning at 11.00, they were again brought in to be interrogated at the Biak Numfor regional police before being released 12 hours later at 23.00. Police  allegedly instructed them to cancel all plans to carry out the procession, and  told them that they  had to report to the police once every 24 hours.

Despite a heavy police and military presence, the procession  went ahead as planned on 20 September. On this day, as Piet Hein Manggaprouw and Yoris Berotabui were on their way to report to the Biak Numfor Regional police, they were stopped by several intelligence officers and forced into a vehicle. While observing the procession from within the vehicle, the intelligence officers allegedly forced the two men to identify NFRPB activists  in the procession. They then drove to the airport where the two men were  forced to identify Dr Frans Kapisa, who had flown in to Biak to deliver the sacred water and ashes.

The intelligence officers  reportedly communicated with other police authorities via walkie talkie on possible plans to shoot Kapisa upon his arrival and to shoot other activist leaders involved in the processions welcoming the sacred water and ashes. Amongst the activists mentioned were Edison Kendi, Markus Yenu and Marthinus Wandamani. The officers  also allegedly discussed strategies to disperse demonstrators forcefully, including beating or shooting demonstrators who disobeyed orders.

We understand that the four community leaders have not been charged with any offence and are not currently reporting to the police.

Yapen island

On 25 September, at around 17.00, Yapen Regional police  reportedly aired an announcement via Indonesian national radio instructing civilians not to go ahead with their planned procession on 26 September. Later that evening, at around 20.30, 20 plainclothes police officers and 2 Kopassus army special forces officers, some armed with M-16s and pistols, arrived at the residence of Edison Kendi in Serui, Yapen island, to arrest him. He was  detained reportedly because of his involvement in  the procession  on 26 September. The police  allegedly stated that in accordance with the Law on Mass Organisations, consent to demonstrate would not be given to groups that were not registered with the Department for National Unity and Politics (Kesatuan Bangsa dan Politik, Kesbangpol), a government body within the Interior Ministry. The arrest was led by the Head of Criminal Investigation within the Yapen Regional police. Kendi is currently undergoing investigations in Yapan Regional police station. Following his arrest, at around 22.10, two police trucks arrived at Kendi’s house and reportedly ransacked the residence in search of documents related to pro-independence activity.

The following day, on 26 September, at around 07.25, Yapen Regional police arrested Demianus Burumi as he was on his way to Serui airport to welcome Dr. Frans Kapisa who had come from Biak island, carrying with him the sacred water and ashes.

The latest information indicates that Kendi and Burumi have been released from detention.

A report from a human rights investigator stated that the procession in Mantembu village on 26 September was forcefully dispersed at around 11.30 by a joint army and Yapen Regional police task force. The police attempted to arrest Kapisa and Markus Yenu but the crowd positioned themselves in a way that allowed the two men to escape arrest. According to the report, security forces are still on guard in Mantembu village.

Online Papuan sources report that police are also targeting other Yapen activists for arrest, including Tinus Wandamani, Yan Piet Maniambo, Hendrik Warmetan, Pieter Hiowati and Heppi Daimboa. As reported in the August update, police employed similar tactics in Sorong city, where four community leaders – Apolos Sewa, Yohanis Goram Gaman, Amandus Mirino and Samuel Klasjok – were arrested after a prayer session and statement to the press in solidarity with the Freedom Flotilla. The four men were also instructed to report to the police and have been charged with treason and incitement.

Releases

Boas Gombo released following mental health decline

Information  from a local human rights source  expressed concern about the declining  mental health of Boas Gombo, who was released on parole on 27 September. Boas Gombo was arrested on 28 February 2013 and  sentenced to nine months’ imprisonment in Abepura prison after being convicted under  Article 66 of Law 24/2009 on the Flag, Language, Symbols of the State and the National Anthem.  His mental health has declined rapidly since 11 September 2013, reportedly due to the severe beatings he  suffered, including multiple blows to the head, during his detention in Muara Tami District Police station. He did not reportedly receive adequate medical treatment whilst in Abepura prison, and was instead only given sedatives.  He will be required to report to authorities for two months.

Dipenus Wenda released after almost ten years in prison

Human rights lawyers have reported the release of Dipenus Wenda on 19 August. His release was part of the 17 August Independence Day remissions.  Wenda was arrested on 28 March 2004 while giving out leaflets campaigning for an election boycott. He spent nine years and seven months in detention in Wamena prison.

Political trials and cases overview

Parole application for case of Wamena ammunition store raid rejected

The Democracy Alliance for Papua (Aliansi Demokrasi untuk Papua, ALDP) has reported that a parole application submitted by one of its lawyers on behalf the five detainees in the Wamena ammunition store raid case has been rejected. The authorities at the Directory General of Correctional Facilities (Direktor Jenderal Permasyarakatan, Dirjen Pas) reportedly stated that the parole application was not  received despite the lawyer’s insistence that it was submitted last year. When asked for  clarification,  the authorities at Dirjen Pas explained that a complete application was necessary for  the matter to be considered. This meant that two documents had to be submitted – a Letter of Assurance and a Statement of Loyalty to the Republic of Indonesia –  as the five detainees were charged with treason. The detainees rejected signing a Statement of Loyalty, which therefore disqualified their application for parole. Applications for parole go through different stages of consideration, starting from prison authorities to the Regional Office for Law and Human Rights in Papua and finally to Dirjen Pas.

The five men – Apotnalogolik Lokobal, Kimanus Wenda, Linus Hiel Hiluka, Jefrai Murib and Numbungga Telenggen – were charged with treason under Article 106 of the Indonesian Criminal Code. They were arrested in April/May 2003, as part of sweeping operations by the military in which nine people were killed and 38 tortured.

Yalengga flag-raising detainees seek remission

ALDP has reported that the four men in the Yalengga flag-raising case – Meki Elosak, Wiki Meaga, Oskar Hilago and Obed Kosay –  sought remission as part of the 17 August Independence Day remission deal. When an inquiry was made into their situation, Wamena prison authorities reportedly stated that the four men will receive remission from Dirjen Pas. This arrangement was therefore not part of the 17 August remissions which are instead administered by the Regional Office for Law and Human Rights in Papua. Lawyers for the four men will also appeal for clemency. The four men continue to be detained in Wamena prison.

Concerns of mental health of 1 May detainees

Information received from human rights sources in Papua reported concerns for Yohanes Boseren in the Biak 1 May case and Obeth Kamesrar in the Aimas 1 May case. Both men were arrested this year in relation to the peaceful activities commemorating the 1 May 50th anniversary  of the administrative transfer of Papua to Indonesia. Borseren was severely beaten on arrest,  and received multiple blows to the head. Obeth Kamesrar, an elderly detainee at 68-years old, has reportedly been silent since his arrest and appears to be suffering from trauma.

Cases of concern

Civilian arbitrarily detained and tortured by Waena police

The Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation (JPIC) Desk of the Protestant Church in Papua (GKI-TP) has reported the arbitrary arrest and torture of a civilian in Waena. On 26 September, Nahor Stefanus Yalak was arrested by Waena police allegedly because of complaints by residents  that he was making too much noise in the area. At 19.00, the police brought Yalak to a nearby police post where he was tortured. Yalak was reportedly made to lie on the floor with his hands tied as the police wearing heavy boots stamped on his hands, and kicked and beat him on the back of his hand, face, back, thighs and knees. He was also whipped on the back with a thick cable. An officer also reportedly ripped a crucifix necklace from Yalak’s neck.  An hour later,  he was taken to the Abepura District Police station where he was detained overnight before being released at 07.30 the following morning. Yalak sustained serious injuries and has difficulty walking.

KontraS Papua report reveals concerns of inadequate medical care and living conditions in Abepura prison

A report received from the human rights organisation, KontraS Papua, on their visit to Abepura prison in August has revealed pressing concerns about inadequate medical healthcare and living conditions in Abepura prison. Jefrai Murib,  reported in  the July update as requiring immediate treatment for his stroke, is making a slow recovery despite the inadequate medical care he is receiving. He is now able to move his hand and is regaining his sense of touch. Prison authorities still do not  comply with recommendations concerning the required number  of hospital appointments. The KontraS Papua report stated that prison authorities often cited reasons of lack of transport, staff or time to postpone sending Murib to  hospital.

The report also reveals other concerns, including the lack of nutrition in prison meals, inadequate bedding and clean water, and faulty toilet facilities. Prisoners often have to lift containers of water from tanks when the bathroom pipes stop working. Ferdinand Pakage, who suffers from severe headaches, is reportedly unable to carry heavy items due to this condition and often experiences harsh pains  if forced to do so. The report states that Pakage is given inadequate medicine to treat his headaches which do not heal him of his pain. According to one doctor at Abepura prison, Pakage’s headaches are caused by a clogged vein and further treatment should be sought. However when KontraS Papua staff asked for further details, other Abepura staff were not aware of any plans to seek further medical treatment for Pakage.  The condition of Filep Karma, who has been suffering from the effects of heart disease, has reportedly improved.

Police raid residence of ex-political prisoner Buchtar Tabuni

Majalah Selangkah reported a raid on the residence of Buchtar Tabuni in Jayapura by a joint army and police task force on 26 September. The raid was led by the Head of the Jayapura Regional police, Alfret Papare, the Head Police Commissioner, Kiki Kurnia, and the Head of Abepura District police,  assisted by  Infantry from the Regional Military Command. The security forces reportedly arrived in four vehicles and were fully armed. They searched the whole house,  looking for Buchtar Tabuni. A few KNPB members who came to the residence seeking answers to why the house was being raided, were  then threatened  by the security forces. They left at 16.00 and headed to Jayapura city. Apparently, no reason was given  why they were conducting the raid.

News

16 political prisoners in Abepura prison sign a letter of support in response to Vanuatu’s General Assembly statement on human rights in Papua

On 28 September 2013, the Prime Minister of the Republic of Vanuatu, Moana Kalosil Carcasses, called on the UN to investigate human rights abuses in West Papua and the territory’s political status. 16 political prisoners in Abepura prison signed a letter of support  for the statement and expressed their thanks to the Prime Minister and the Republic of Vanuatu for their commitment and consistency in supporting the West Papuan cause.

September 2013 Papuan political prisoners

  Prisoner Arrested Charges Sentence Case Accused of violence? Concerns reported re legal process? Prison
1 Victor Yeimo 13 May 2013 160 3 years  (handed down in 2009) 2009 demo; 13 May Jayapura demo No Yes Abepura
2 Astro Kaaba 3 May 2013 Treason Unknown Yapen police death Yes Trial pending Serui police station
3 Hans Arrongear Unknown Treason Unknown Yapen police death Yes Trial pending Serui police station
4 Oktovianus Warnares 1 May 2013 106, Emergency Law 12/1951 Unknown Biak flag-raising, 1 May commemoration No Yes Biak police custody
5 Yoseph Arwakon 1 May 2013 106, Emergency Law 12/1951 Unknown Biak flag-raising, 1 May commemoration No Yes Biak police custody
6 Yohanes Boseren 1 May 2013 106, Emergency Law 12/1951 Unknown Biak flag-raising, 1 May commemoration No Yes Biak police custody
7 Markus Sawias 1 May 2013 106, Emergency Law 12/1951 Unknown Biak flag-raising, 1 May commemoration No Yes Biak police custody
8 George Syors Simyapen 1 May 2013 106, Emergency Law 12/1951 Unknown Biak flag-raising, 1 May commemoration No Yes Biak police custody
9 Jantje Wamaer 1 May 2013 106, Emergency Law 12/1951 Unknown Biak flag-raising, 1 May commemoration No Yes Biak police custody
10 Domi Mom 1 May 2013 Treason Unknown Timika flag-raising, 1 May commemoration No Trial pending Timika
11 Alfisu Wamang 1 May 2013 Treason Unknown Timika flag-raising, 1 May commemoration No Trial pending Timika
12 Musa Elas 1 May 2013 Treason Unknown Timika flag-raising, 1 May commemoration No Trial pending Timika
13 Eminus Waker 1 May 2013 Treason Unknown Timika flag-raising, 1 May commemoration No Trial pending Timika
14 Yacob Onawame 1 May 2013 Treason Unknown Timika flag-raising, 1 May commemoration No Trial pending Timika
15 Hengky Mangamis 30 April 2013 106, 107, 108, 110, 160 and 164 Trial ongoing Aimas shootings, 1 May commemoration No Yes Sorong police station
16 Yordan Magablo 30 April2013 106, 107, 108, 110, 160 and 164 Trial ongoing Aimas shootings, 1 May commemoration No Yes Sorong police station
17 Obaja Kamesrar 30 April2013 106, 107, 108, 110, 160 and 164 Trial ongoing Aimas shootings, 1 May commemoration No Yes Sorong police station
18 Antonius Safuf 30 April2013 106, 107, 108, 110, 160 and 164 Trial ongoing Aimas shootings, 1 May commemoration No Yes Sorong police station
19 Obeth Kamesrar 30 April2013 106, 107, 108, 110, 160 and 164 Trial ongoing Aimas shootings, 1 May commemoration No Yes Sorong police station
20 Klemens Kodimko 30 April2013 106, 107, 108, 110, 160 and 164 Trial ongoing Aimas shootings, 1 May commemoration No Yes Sorong police station
21 Isak Klaibin 30 April2013 106, 107, 108, 110, 160 and 164 Trial ongoing Aimas shootings, 1 May commemoration; accused of being TPN/OPM No Yes Sorong police station
22 Yahya Bonay 27 April 2013 Unknown Unknown Yapen policedeath Yes Trial pending Serui police custody
23 Atis Rambo Wenda 4 April 2013 170 10 months Accused of violent crime Yes Yes Abepura
24 Yogor Telenggen 10 March 2013 340, 338, 170, 251, Emergency Law 12/1951 Awaiting trial Pirime shootings 2012 Yes Yes Papua Provincial police station
25 Isak Demetouw(alias Alex Makabori) 3 March 2013 110; Article 2, Emergency Law 12/1951 Trial ongoing Sarmi arrests No Trial pending Sarmi
26 Daniel Norotouw 3 March 2013 110; Article 2, Emergency Law 12/1951 Trial ongoing Sarmi arrests No Trial pending Sarmi
27 Niko Sasomar 3 March 2013 110; Article 2, Emergency Law 12/1951 Trial ongoing Sarmi arrests No Trial pending Sarmi
28 Sileman Teno 3 March 2013 110; Article 2, Emergency Law 12/1951 Trial ongoing Sarmi arrests No Trial pending Sarmi
29 Andinus Karoba 10 October 2012 365(2), Law 8/1981 1 year 10 months Demak activist accused of theft Yes Yes Abepura
30 Yan Piet Maniamboy 9 August 2012 106 Trial ongoing Indigenous people’s day celebrations, Yapen No Yes Serui
31 Edison Kendi 9 August 2012 106 Trial ongoing Indigenous people’s day celebrations, Yapen No Yes Serui
32 Jefri Wandikbo 7 June 2012 340, 56, Law 8/1981 8 years Accused of violent crime in Wamena Yes Yes Abepura
33 Timur Wakerkwa 1 May 2012 106 2.5 years 1 May demo and flag-raising No No Abepura
34 Darius Kogoya 1 May 2012 106 3 years 1 May demo and flag-raising No No Abepura
35 Bastian Mansoben 21 October 2012 Emergency Law 12/1951 Trial ongoing Biak explosives case Possession of explosives No Biak
36 Forkorus Yaboisembut 19 October 2011 106 3 years Third Papua Congress No Yes Abepura
37 Edison Waromi 19 October 2011 106 3 years Third Papua Congress No Yes Abepura
38 Dominikus Surabut 19 October 2011 106 3 years Third Papua Congress No Yes Abepura
39 August Kraar 19 October 2011 106 3 years Third Papua Congress No Yes Abepura
40 Selphius Bobii 20 October 2011 106 3 years Third Papua Congress No Yes Abepura
41 Wiki Meaga 20 November 2010 106 8 years Yalengga flag-raising No Yes Wamena
42 Oskar Hilago 20 November 2010 106 8 years Yalengga flag-raising No Yes Wamena
43 Meki Elosak 20 November 2010 106 8 years Yalengga flag-raising No Yes Wamena
44 Obed Kosay 20 November 2010 106 8 years Yalengga flag-raising No Yes Wamena
45 Yusanur Wenda 30 April 2004 106 17 years Wunin arrests Yes No Wamena
46 George Ariks 13 March 2009 106 5 years Unknown Unknown No Manokwari
47 Filep Karma 1 December 2004 106 15 years Abepura flag-raising 2004 No Yes Abepura
48 Ferdinand Pakage 16 March 2006 214 15 years Abepura case 2006 Yes Yes Abepura
49 Jefrai Murib 12 April 2003 106 Life Wamena ammunition store raid Yes Yes Abepura
50 Linus Hiel Hiluka 27 May 2003 106 20 years Wamena ammunition store raid Yes Yes Nabire
51 Kimanus Wenda 12 April 2003 106 20 years Wamena ammunition store raid Yes Yes Nabire
52 Numbungga Telenggen 11 April 2003 106 Life Wamena ammunition store raid Yes Yes Biak
53 Apotnalogolik Lokobal 10 April 2003 106 20 years Wamena ammunition store raid Yes Yes Biak 

Papuans Behind Bars aims to provide accurate and transparent data, published in English and Indonesian, to facilitate direct support for prisoners and promote wider debate and campaigning in support of free expression in West Papua.

Papuans Behind Bars is a collective project initiated by Papuan civil society groups working together as the Civil Society Coalition to Uphold Law and Human Rights in Papua. It is a grassroots initiative and represents a broad collaboration between lawyers, human rights groups, adat groups, activists, journalists and individuals in West Papua, as well as Jakarta-based NGOs and international solidarity groups.

Questions, comments and corrections are welcomed, and you can write to us at info@papuansbehindbars.org

Take Action

Papuans Behind Bars is an information resource about political prisoners in Papua. As many readers will want to take action in support of these prisoners, here are some ideas about how you could make a difference.

If you are in West Papua

Spread the word

Anybody can use the information on this site to spread the word, tell people about West Papua’s political prisoners, and encourage them to take action. You could write about the problem, blog about it, share it on social networking sites, and pass it on to your friends. Make sure you say that the information is from Papuans Behind Bars so that the source of the information is clear.

Build a campaign

You can use the information on this site to build a campaign to raise awareness of the problem, raise money to support prisoners and their families, and to lobby the government and the police to change their policies.

Show your support

There are lots of ways to show your support for the political prisoners. You could visit them, and worship is usually the best opportunity to catch up with Papuan political prisoners. You could take them food, medicine, books, a newspaper and or anything you think would cheer them up. As visits can be risky, you could also write them a letter or remember them in your prayers, according to your own beliefs. Another way to show your support could be by writing about the prisoners to raise awareness of their situation.

Help keep Papuans Behind Bars up-to-date

If you know of a political prisoner who is not listed on the site, or who is in trouble and needs advocacy support, please find out as much information you can and click here to submit it to Papuans Behind Bars.

Help with translation

If you speak both English and Indonesian to a good standard, you could help Papuans Behind Bars make sure that information about Papuan political prisoners is available to as many people as possible. If you would like to help support this project, please write to us: info@papuansbehindbars.org

Help to change policy

In the short-term, Papuans Behind Bars aims to support those groups working for the release of Papuan and other political prisoners, by providing accurate, up-to-date and transparent information. But ultimately, the policies which allow police to arrest those who peacefully express their views and aspirations must change. A number of organisations based in Papua, Jakarta and beyond are working to bring about long-term change. If you are interested in joining us to challenge these policies, please contact Papuans Behind Bars to find out how you can help.

If you are outside Papua

Pick up the phone

Don’t let Papuan political prisoners be isolated! You could try calling the prisons to express your concerns about the safety of a prisoner, and to let them know that people across Indonesia are monitoring the situation. Often it is most effective to call a prison at times when prisoners are especially vulnerable, for example when they have just been arrested and are at risk of torture; when they are unwell; when they have been harassed by prison guards, or transferred to another place of imprisonment such as a police station.

Contact your local Papuan solidarity group

Get together with Papuan groups, students and human rights groups to hold discussions on campus, or have a letter-writing workshop to write to the prisoners,

Join the debate

Anybody can use the information on this site to write, blog or report on the issue, giving your own thoughts, opinions and analysis. While we may not agree with what everybody thinks, the more this issue can be brought out into the open and discussed, the better.

Help with translation

If you speak both English and Indonesian to a good standard, you could help Papuans Behind Bars make sure that information about Papuan political prisoners is available to as many people as possible. If you would like to help support this project, please write to us: info@papuansbehindbars.org

Help to change policy

In the short-term, Papuans Behind Bars aims to support those groups working for the release of Papuan and other political prisoners, by providing accurate, up-to-date and transparent information. But ultimately, the policies which allow police to arrest those who peacefully express their views and aspirations must change. A number of organisations based in Papua, Jakarta and beyond are working to bring about long-term change. If you are interested in joining us to challenge these policies, please contact Papuans Behind Bars to find out how you can help.

If you are outside Indonesia

Pick up the phone

It has been shown that direct phone calls to prisons can really make a difference to the way prisoners are treated. Phone calls from outsiders alert the prison authorities that people outside Papua are concerned and are monitoring reports of mistreatment. One West Papuan prisoner reported a few years ago:

“I was being kept in the pitch black in an overflowing toilet. I was cuffed at my hands and feet. After two weeks the guards pulled me out and asked me why all these people were phoning and enquiring about me. They looked scared and I told them that now the world is watching them. I was returned to my cell but they now cleaned it, put a light in and removed the cuffs… It made me feel strong to hear people outside were supporting me.”

Often it is most effective to call a prison at times when prisoners are especially vulnerable, for example when they have just been arrested and are at risk of torture; when they are unwell; when they have been harassed by prison guards, or transferred to another place of imprisonment such as a police station. The following organisations have issued urgent action alerts in the past:

If you do not speak Indonesian, it is still good to call in English or your own language. Say where you are calling from and repeat clearly the name of the prisoner(s) you are calling about. Remember that you will be more helpful if you speak politely. Or you could use some of the example phrases in Indonesian written below (pronunciation guide in brackets).

Some Indonesian phrases you can use (pronunciation guide in brackets):

Saya telepon tentang … (Sy-ar telepon tentang…)

I am telephoning about …

Tolong perhatikan baik kesehatan mereka, minum, makan dan keselamatan mereka (Tolong perhateekan bike kay-say-hartan meraykar, minum, makan dan kay-selamatan meraykar)

Please treat them well, give food, water and look after them

Saya dari Inggris / Amerika / Afrika / Kanada / Perancis / Jerman / Selandia Baru / Belanda (Sayar dary Ingrees / Amerika / Afrika / Canada / Peranchis / Jerman / Selandia Baru / Belanda)

I am from England / US / Africa / Canada / France / Germany / New Zealand / Netherlands

Saya peserta / juru bicara/ seorang pendukung/ organisasi ____________ (Sayar peserta / jooroo bichara / se orang pendukung / organisasi ___________)

I am a member / spokesperson / supporter of ___________ organisation.

Kami tahu apa yang dilakukan di lembaga (Karmee tahoo apa yang di la kookan dee lembarga)

We know what is happening in the prison

Pengobatan tahanan adalah tanggung jawab penjara (Pengobatan tahanan adala tangung jawab penjaara)

The prison is responsible for the healthcare of detainees

Kami sedang memantau kondisi di dalam penjara (Kami sedang memantow kondisi di dalam penjaara)

We are monitoring conditions inside the prison.

Segala pemeriksaan harus sesuai dengan KUHAP; jangan sampai ada penyiksaan (Segaala pemeriksa an harus sesooai dengan koohap, jangan samp-eye ada penyiksa an)

Interrogations must follow the procedural code; don’t let there be any torture

Kami adalah teman mereka (Karmee ard-ar-lar tayman meraykar)

We are their friends

Write to the prisoners

This is a fantastic way to make sure political prisoners know that they are not alone. See the Current Prisoners list for people to write to. You can send letters directly to the prison addresses, or contact Papuans Behind Bars for details of how to send letter to local human rights lawyers who can deliver them by hand and make sure they arrive.

Why not get some cards signed at a meeting or event and send them to the prisoners. If you cannot write Indonesian, do not worry, just send a colourful card and include some of these phrases:

Saya /kami harap anda baik baik                                I/we hope you are well
Saya /kami harap anda akan cepat bebas              I/we hope you will be free soon
Salam dari _____                                                             Greetings from _____

Ma’af saya tidak berbahasa Indonesia    Sorry I can’t speak Indonesian

Or you could try to use an online translation tool www.translate.google.com If you include a return address, you may even get a reply!

Help with translation

If you speak both English and Indonesian to a good standard, you could help Papuans Behind Bars make sure that information about Papuan political prisoners is available to as many people as possible. If you would like to help support this project, please write to us: info@papuansbehindbars.org

Help to change policy

In the short-term, Papuans Behind Bars aims to support those groups working for the release of Papuan and other political prisoners, by providing accurate, up-to-date and transparent information. But ultimately, the policies which allow police to arrest those who peacefully express their views and aspirations must change. A number of organisations based in Papua, Jakarta and beyond are working to bring about long-term change. If you are interested in joining us to challenge these policies, please contact Papuans Behind Bars to find out how you can help.

Human Rights Campaigns

This is a list of international organisations that carry out campaigns about human rights in Papua. Many also issue action points, such as letter-writing campaigns.

Amnesty International https://www.amnesty.org/en/region/indonesia

Faith-based Network on West Papua http://www.faithbasednetworkonwestpapua.org/

Free West Papua Campaign http://www.freewestpapua.org/

Human Rights Watch http://www.hrw.org/asia/indonesia

Indonesia Human Rights Committee http://indonesiahumanrights.org.nz/

Solidarity South Pacific http://www.eco-action.org/ssp/

TAPOL www.tapol.org

West Papua Advocacy Team http://www.etan.org/issues/wpapua/default.htm

West Papua Netzwerk http://www.west-papua-netz.de/index.php/mID/8/lan/de

thanks to:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.