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Jakarta Post

Wiranto tells public on Papua's ‘unlawful’ killings report: Don’t be careless

  • Marguerite Afra Sapiie
    Marguerite Afra Sapiie

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Mon, July 2, 2018   /   10:53 pm
Wiranto tells public on Papua's ‘unlawful’ killings report: Don’t be careless Papuans hold a rally calling for self-determination on Wednesday in Sentani, Papua, demanding the government hold an independence referendum for the country's easternmost province. (KNPB /Exclusive) (KNPB/Exclusive)

The government will look into the details of a newly-released report that accused Indonesia of "unlawful killings" of nearly 100 people in Papua over the last eight years, Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Wiranto said on Monday.

A two-year investigation by Amnesty International released on Monday revealed that at least 95 people, 85 of whom were Papuan, had been killed by security personnel from 2010 to 2018. Most of the perpetrators have never been tried accountably, the report said.

Read also: Indonesian forces to blame for Papua killings: Amnesty

Responding to the report, the chief security minister said on Monday that the government would look into the cases, but added that Amnesty's investigation was a one-sided report.

"We [need] to explain who and how, whether [the people were killed] in operations or not. We will look at it case by case," Wiranto said. "Don't be careless [by just believing the data]," he went on.

According to Amnesty International, 95 victims were killed unlawfully in 69 incidents that took place between January 2010 and February 2018. Thirty-nine people were killed while staging peaceful protests demanding Papua's liberation, while 56 were killed in events unrelated to political activities.

The police were alleged to be the perpetrators in 34 of the cases, while the military were alleged to be involved in 23 cases. In 11 other cases, both the police and military were allegedly responsible.

Not one of the 69 incidents has been subject to criminal investigation by an independent body. Out of all the cases, only six of the perpetrators were held accountable for the deaths, the report said.

"The culture of impunity within the security forces needs to be eliminated," Amnesty International Indonesia director Usman Hamid said. "Those who are responsible for the past killings must be tried through an independent legal mechanism."

Many Papuans have expressed their dissatisfaction and accused Jakarta of being unfair to them. Some have demanded a referendum to decide whether Papua and West Papua should remain as part of Indonesia. The Indonesian Military and the National Police call these activists separatists or armed criminal groups. (evi)