Indonesia: AMP Call for Veronica Koman’s ‘Suspect’ Status to be Revoked & Unconditional Release of 6 Activists

Received and translated on 05.09.19:

Papua Students Alliance (AMP) Call for Immediate Revocation of Veronica Koman’s ‘Suspect’ Status and the Unconditional Release of the 6 Activists

East Java Regional Police Chief Inspector General Luki Hermawan has named Veronica Koman a suspect and claims that she spread ‘hoaxes’ and ‘provocation’ regarding what took place at the Surabaya Papuan Student Dormitory.

Veronica Koman is a human rights activist, since 2015 she has actively assisted Papuan students outside West Papua taking part in ‘Mass Action’ and the people in West Papua who have been repressed, arrested and imprisoned by the TNI / Polri (Indonesian Armed Forces / Indonesian Police) and accused of rebellion, separatism and so on.

The naming of Veronica Koman as a suspect by the East Java Regional Police is also being used to justify the arbitrary arrests of 5 Papuan student activists and 1 Indonesian pro-deomcracy activist, Surya Anta, spokesperson for the Indonesian Peoples’ Front for West Papua, and the arrest of 46 anti-racism demonstrators in Timika,* as well as restrictions against public expression of opinions against the State issued via Papuan Regional Police directives.

Polri and Menkom Polhukam** are currently busy sending more military personnel to West Papua and carrying out arrests and criminalization of activists. While military operations in Gome District, Puncak Regency and Deiya in West Papua since the beginning of August 2019 have claimed many victims. While 40000 Nduga residents are still displaced in the forest due to military operations since the beginning of 2019. More than 180 refugees have died. There is an emergency situation in West Papua. This emergency situation is difficult to access due to internet restrictions and lack of journalist access to West Papua.

The State, TNI / Polri take no action against human rights violations, the perpetrators of the siege of the Papuan Dormitory or racists. The State is protecting the perpetrators of these crimes.

The motive behind the arrests and criminalization by the Indonesian Police is to hide prolonged violence and human rights violations in West Papua. The voices of dissent are silenced and imprisoned by the State to maintain the oppression of the people of West Papua.

Based on this, we demand the following from the colonialist regime of the Republic of Indonesia, the Greater Jakarta Metropolitan Regional Police and the East Java Regional Police:

1. The East Java Regional Police must immediately withdraw the ‘suspect’ status, issued with baseless claims, against human rights activist Veronica Koman.

2. Immediately unconditional release of the 6 activists.

3. To end the State protection of perpetrators of racist and repressive acts, as well as perpetrators of human rights violations. Immediately arrest and charge them.

4. Indonesian Police will need to prepare bigger detention centers. Papuan students and people will fill the prisons,*** from the Jakarta Metropolitan Police HQ to every city. We will destroy the Treason law, the Papuan Regional Police Declaration, and all other forms of colonialism: including racism, discrimination and criminalization.

And so! Repression has taught the oppressed people the meaning of oppression and to rise up against it until West Papua can live peacefully, IE, free from colonialism.

Revolutionary Greetings!

Medang Juang, September 5th, 2019

Central Committee for the Papua Students Alliance (AMP)

Jhon Gobai – Chairperson

Albert Mungguar – General Secretary II

(Original text in Bahasa Indonesia on Koran Kejora)



Translation notes:
*capital city of Mimika Regency in West Papua
**The Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs, Wiranto – who was indicted in 2003 for crimes against humanity committed in Timor Leste.
***This is in reference to a protest strategy used by West Papuan activists in Indonesia – gathering in large numbers outside police stations where their comrades are being held and demanding to be arrested. 



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