National

No proof’ of human rights
violations at Cebongan

The Indonesia Advocates Association (Peradi) Yogyakarta branch has announced that it has found no indications of severe human rights violations in the Cebongan prison killings in which 11 of the Army’s Special Forces (Kopassus) soldiers are suspects.

“We have no proof that the attack was ordered by superior officers and thus involved the institution. Therefore, despite its gravity we still cannot categorize this as severe human rights violation,” said M Syafei, secretary of Peradi’s Yogyakarta branch.

He said the suspected Kopassus soldiers should be tried by a military court.

Peradi’s suggestion was different from the one issued by the National Commission of Human Rights (Komnas HAM), which suggested there were indications of human rights violations in the shootings.

Syafei said that, if asked, Peradi would be ready to defend the suspected soldiers.

Separately, Yogyakarta Law and Human Rights regional office head Rusdianto said he had been informed that the Military Police had completed the questioning of 41 witnesses, which comprised 31 Cebongan prison inmates and 11 wardens.

He said these witnesses were assisted by officials from the Witness and Victim Protection Agency (LPSK) during the questioning that took place at Cebongan prison. The LPSK had also asked a group of the police’s Mobile Brigade (Brimob) officers to safeguard the questioning process.

LPSK deputy chief Lies Sulistiani said the witnesses were very cooperative during the questioning.

“We will provide protection until the end of the court process,” she said.

The suspected Kopassus soldiers have been detained over the charges of killing four detainees in Cebongan prison, Sleman.

The four deceased detainees were being held in connection with the murder of Chief. Sgt. Heru Santoso, a Diponegoro Military Command intelligence unit officer who was also a former member of Kopassus. (dic)

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