The suffering of the families of kidnapped prodemocracy activists is now “complete” with the appointment of two former members of the infamous Tim Mawar, the father of one of the activists said.
“I think our suffering is now complete, [the government] hasn't pulled any punches. After the kidnappings, they just ignored us, so it's complete,” Dionysius Oetomo Raharjo said on Tuesday, as quoted by kompas.com.
Dionysius’ son, Petrus Bimo Anugerah, is among 13 activists who have been missing for more than two decades after allegedly being abducted by Tim Mawar, part of the Army’s Special Forces (Kopassus), between 1997 and 1998.
Through a presidential decree issued on Sept. 23, Jokowi promoted Brig. Gen. Dadang Hendrayudha to become the Defense Ministry’s director general for defense potential and Brig. Gen. Yulius Selvanus to lead the ministry’s Strategic Defense Installation Agency (Bainstrahan). Both generals are former members of Tim Mawar.
In 1999, the Jakarta High Military Court sentenced Dadang and Yulius to 16 and 20 months’ imprisonment, respectively. The court also decided to dismiss Yulius from the Indonesia Military (TNI), though the verdict was annulled after Yulius appealed.
Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto himself has been implicated in the kidnappings in his capacity as Kopassus commander at the time.
Dionysius said he was not surprised by Jokowi’s decision.
“It’s okay. That’s how politics is. I’m not surprised at all that conscience is ignored,” he said. “I’ve had enough, it has been 22 years [of seeking justice]. I was stupid but now I understand.” (aly)