ICP e-newsletter june 2017 PDF Afdrukken E-mailadres
dinsdag 20 juni 2017 01:00

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In this issue if the ICP e-newsletter you will find:

  • Human Rights Update West Papua – 1st Quarter of 2017
  • Human rights in Indonesia under review at the UPR
  • Dutch Human Rights Ambassador visits Jayapura
  • Cases: 320 political arrests throughout May 2017
  • Adoption of local regulation on the restoration of Papuan female victims
  • Case: Yapen District Police officers allegedly execute Maikel Marani
  • Case: Tensions and military presence due to conflict between mining companies in nifasi increase
  • ULMWP lobbies Uganda Parliament to support West Papuan independence
  • Pacific island countries deliver joint statement on West Papua at ACP council meeting in Brussels
  • Case: military members attack two Papuan men with knife in Uwibutu village, Paniai Regency
  • Side event on press freedom in West Papua as Indonesia hosts World Press Freedom Day
  • Cases: Series of assaults against local journalists in Papua
  • Case: military members open fire at protesters in Jayapura
  • Case: Police officer allegedly beats human rights defender
  • Case: Epidemic outbreak in Lanny Jaya Regency causes death of 37 villagers

Human Rights Update West Papua – 1st Quarter of 2017

In the first quarter of 2017, security forces killed four indigenous Papuans while the perpetrators remain untouched by law. The killings occurred in the regencies Kepulauan Yapen, Jayawijaya and Dogiyai. These Papuan regencies continue to be classified as 'red zones', where security force members tend to label indigenous Papuans as supporters of separatist assaults movements. Hence, security force operations are conducted with a high level of violence. The majority of violations were committed by police officers during arrest or detention, where victims are vulnerable to acts of torture. The period between January and March 2017 revealed a case pattern, comprising violations such as extra-judicial killings, torture, violations of indigenous peoples rights, limitations regarding media freedom and violations of the right to fair trial.

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Human rights in Indonesia under review at the UPR

altOn 3rd May 2017, the human rights situation in Indonesia was reviewed for the 3rd time as part of the Universal Periodic Review mechanism of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland. This review was significantly different from previous reviews: Past Indonesian UPR delegations of 2008 and 2012 had tried to pull focus from the human rights situation in West Papua by addressing human rights issues of national relevance, such as the freedom of belief or migrant workers' rights. For the 2017 review, the Indonesian delegation had chosen a different strategy, by providing information on various state efforts to address the human rights situation in West Papua. At the same time, one could observe the general trend that state parties prioritized recommendations referring to national issues, such as the protection from discrimination of women, LGBTI persons (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Inter-sex), religious minorities and people living with disabilities, as well as the abolishment of the death penalty during this third review.

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Dutch Human Rights Ambassador visits Jayapura

altAn official Dutch delegation headed by the Human Rights Ambassador Mr. Kees Van Baar visited Jayapura on 4 May. During his short term visit, the Ambassador met with the Governor of the Papua Province and members of the Papuan provincial parliament. The delegation also paid a short visit to the Community School of Justice in the village Nimbokrang, where he talked with community members and school participants.

Cases: 320 political arrests throughout May 2017

altWhile the months January to April 2017 were comparably quiet in terms of political arrests, activists and human rights defenders have reported 320 political arrests throughout May 2017. Most arrests occurred during peaceful assemblies like demonstrations or prayer sessions in various cities of West Papua. A smaller number of political arrests was related to the distribution of leaflets. Some arrests were allegedly accompanied by acts of violence against protesters, as it was reported from the 1st May commemoration in Sentani and a prayer session in Timika, which was organized by the West Papua National Committee (KNPB) on the 30.05.2017.

Adoption of local regulation on the restoration of Papuan female victims

The Department for Internal Affairs (DEPDAGRI) through the National Women Commission (KOMNAS Perempuan) has shared information on the local regulation PERDASUS No. 1 / 2011 on the Restoration of the Rights of Papuan Female Victims of Violence and Human Rights Violations. Even though the law had already been passed under former Governor Syamsul Arief Rivai on 3 August 2011, civil society activists had not been informed about the adoption of the law until early April 2017. The regulation provides detailed descriptions and definitions of various forms of violence (Article 2) and human rights violations against women (Article 3:), with particular reference to discrimination, forms of slavery or human trafficking including prostitution, forced marriage and forced sterilization. Furthermore, it defines the rights of female victims, which includes their restoration through restitution, rehabilitation and compensation, as well as the victim's right to truth and justice.

Case: Yapen District Police officers allegedly execute Maikel Marani

Local human rights defenders in Yapen Island have reported that a special police force unit under command of Yapen District Police allegedly executed the head of the local armed independence group Maikel Marani (28 years) in the early morning hours of 27 March 2017 at Kontinuai Village, Angkaisera District, Yapen Islands Regency. According to eye witnesses, special force members in black uniforms and balaclavas approached the house of Maikel Marani's in-laws at 01:00 am, where Maikel had stayed over night. The witnesses stated that Maikel Marani was unarmed at the time of the attempted arrest. As Maikel Marani tried to escape, a police officer released shots at him, one of them hitting Maikel's leg. Despite no further attempts to avoid the arrest, the officers again fired several shots at Maikel Marani, causing his instant death on the spot. Subsequently, the police officers tortured two other villagers with the initials H.S. (30 years) and F.A. (28 years), and forced them at gunpoint to show where Maikel Marani had hidden his weapons.

Case: Tensions and military presence due to conflict between mining companies in nifasi increase

altThe customary council for the Papuan customary area of Meepago reported of increasing tensions in the area around Nifasi village of Nabire Regency, due to an ongoing conflict between two gold mining companies in the area. The operation area of both companies belong to the Wate tribe. Particularly villagers living in Nifasi village are heavily affected by the conflict, which has resulted in extensive military presence around the gold panning sites at the nearby Masairo River.

ULMWP lobbies Uganda Parliament to support West Papuan independence

altUganda's leading daily news paper 'The New Vision' published an article on 2 May 2017 about the lobby meeting between ULMWP executive director Jacob Rumbiak and the deputy speaker of the Uganda Parliament, Mr. Jacob Oulanyah. The meeting was part of a courtesy visit to the Uganda Parliament on 7 April 2017. During the meeting Jacob Rumbiak stated that the ULMWP asks Uganda to influence other African states to support the independence of West Papua at the United Nations.

Pacific island countries deliver joint statement on West Papua at ACP council meeting in Brussels

altThe Pacific Island nations of Vanuatu, the Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, Nauru, Palau and the Marshall Islands delivered a joint statement on 3 May 2017 at the Council of Ministers of the 79-member Africa Caribbean Pacific Group of States (ACP), in which they voiced concerns over  present and past human rights violations – including crimes against humanity - in the region. The Pacific nations also called for an eventual resolution that includes support of the right of West Papuan political self-determination. The statement was read aloud by Johnny Koanapo, a high-ranking member of the Republic of Vanuatu parliament and Parliamentary Secretary for the Office of the Prime Minister.

Case: military members attack two Papuan men with knife in Uwibutu village, Paniai Regency

altLocal human rights defenders from the Paniai Regency have reported, that two military members allegedly attacked Yus Degei and Piet Degei in Uwibutu village in Madi District, Paniai regency. The incident occurred at 09.00 am on the 1 May 2017 after the owner of a small shop in Uwibutu had accused the Papuan men of theft and subsequently reported them to members of the nearby 753 military base by phone.

A few minutes later, two members of the 753 Paniai military unit arrived at the location and instantly attacked the Papuan men using their knifes. Piet and Yus Degiai sustained serious stabbing and slashing wounds. Yus Degei was stabbed in the face, causing a deep wound on his left cheek. Piet Degei was slashed on the back, leading to deep cuts near both shoulder blades on his upper back. Both men were brought to Paniai General Hospital, where they received intensive medical care.

Read more

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Side event on press freedom in West Papua as Indonesia hosts World Press Freedom Day

altThe Indonesian government together with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the Indonesian Press Council (PWI) hosted the 24th annual celebration of World Press Freedom Day (WPFD) at the Jakarta Convention Center JCC in Senayan from 1st to 4th May 2017. The WPFD is held to make an annual evaluation of global press freedom; to stand up for the independence of the press; and to pay tribute to those who have lost their life carrying their journalistic duties. The celebration with the slogan “Critical Minds for Critical Times: Media’s Role in Advancing Peaceful Just and Inclusive Societies” was attended by approximately 1.500 participants from 100 countries. In the run-up to the event, civil society organisations and journalists had protested against the WPFD in Indonesia, considering the restrictions on press freedom in the country's easternmost provinces Papua and Papua Barat. The irony of Indonesia hosting the WPFD 2017 has inter alia been noted by the international newspaper Guardian.

Cases: Series of assaults against local journalists in Papua

altTwo days before Indonesia hosted the annual event for the commemoration of the World Press Freedom Day on 3 May at the Jakarta Convention Center, human rights defenders reported a further physical assault against a journalist, working for the local news website 'Tabloid Jubi'. Police officers arbitrarily arrested Yance Wenda on 1 May 2017 around 9.00 am, as he was covering a peaceful demonstration by the pro-independence organization KNPB (West Papua National Committee) in Sentani, Jayapura Regency. He was subsequently detained for four hours at the Jayapura district police station, where officers allegedly tortured him. According to Yance Wenda, several police officers beat him on face, back, legs and arms using bare hands a rattan sticks (see image below). One officer kicked Yance Wenda in the face, causing a deep cut in the inside of his lower lip.

Case: military members open fire at protesters in Jayapura

altA violent clash between a large number of protesters and military members occurred in Jayapura on 25 May 2017 after members of the Korem 172/PWY military base had allegedly burned several bibles. The protesters had gathered in front of the military base, where they erected road blocks on the main road, connecting Jayapura with the suburban area Waena. The Mayor of Jayapura City and police officers had tried to calm down the crowd, asking the protesters to go home and leave the prosecution of perpetrators to the police. As all attempts of mediation remained unsuccessful, military members forcefully dispersed the protest because angry demonstrators had allegedly thrown stones at security force members and injured two police officers during the mediation attempt.

Case: Police officer allegedly beats human rights defender

A police officer from the Jayapura sub-district police has allegedly beaten Nareky Kogoya on 18th May 2017 during a police sweeping in the sub-urban area of Waena, which was carried out to identify possible suspects in a murder case. According to Nareky, the officers had questioned him, which upon he then told them about his profession as staff at the Papuan representative office of the National Human Rights Commission (KOMNAS HAM).

Case: Epidemic outbreak in Lanny Jaya Regency causes death of 37 villagers

Multiple local media outlets have reported the deaths of 37 villagers between 1 January and 25 April 2017 in the Awena District of Lanny Jaya Regency, Papua Province. The alleged reason for the deaths was an epidemic diarrhea outbreak in the villages Tinggira, Nambume, Eyumi, Uragabur, Yugimia and Indawa. At least four villagers had to be hospitalized in Tiom General Hospital, where they received medical treatment.