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Troop deployment to guard Exxon and other vital enterprises

06 November 2001

A report from Aceh indicates the extent of troop deployment in North Aceh, nominally charged with protecting a number of Indonesia’s most prestigious industrial ventures, including Exxon-Mobil Indonesia and its associated refinery, PT ARUN.According to the report, which gives a detailed breakdown of troop deployment, at least 10,755 (ten thousand seven hundred and fifty-five) troops have been posted in 77 (seventy seven) different location in the district of North Aceh, including 30 (thirty) villages, 3 (three) schools, 2 (two) mosques and one shopping complex. The report states that two...

Update on Wamena political prisoners

26 July 2001

The 22 West Papuans who were tried and convicted to sentences of up to four and a half years earlier this year in connection with the events in Wamena on 6 October 2000 have had their status as prisoners changed from imprisonment to town arrest. The change happened as the result of a decision of the Supreme Court on 20 July 2001 following an application by their lawyers to have their status as prisoners altogether revoked. The Supreme Court took into consideration guarantees made on their behalf by church leaders, community leaders and youth leaders that they would abide by the following...

Criminalising politics in West Papua

06 July 2001

Murdjono Murib, Yafet Yelemaken, Amelia Yigibalom, Rev Yudas Meage, Rev. Obed Komba, Agus Sorabut, Hendrik Sieb, Edi Marian, Herry Kosay, Frans Huby, Isak Wenda, Atinus Wenda, Les Wenda, Timanus Kogoya, Yules Wenda, Teri Wenda, Elius Wenda, Yohakim Hubi, Jekson Itlay, Yoel Wenda, Pilius Wenda, Sudirman PagawakThe 22 West Papuans named above have been in detention in Wamena, Jayawijaya district, since October and December 2000. All the 22 were arrested during and following a series of highly provocative operations by the Indonesian police in and around the town of Wamena, which began when...

Bantaqiah trial, Aceh: an examination of the indictment

25 April 2000

Serious flaws have already begun to emerge in the proceedings of the koneksitas (joint civilian and military) court which is hearing the case of the massacre of the religious teacher, Teungku Bantaqiah, members of his family and dozens of his pupils. The trial began on 19 April in Banda Aceh with the presentation of the indictment by the prosecution.The twenty-five defendants include 24 soldiers from the local territorial command and from the army's strategic command, Kostrad; they include three low-ranking officers, a captain and two lieutenants. The other 21 soldiers are NCOs and privates....

Seeking justice in Aceh still has a long way to go

13 April 2000

In an interview in today's Suara Pembaruan, the attorney-general Marzuki Darusman reveals that he has serious misgivings about the trial which is due to start next week in Banda Aceh. Altogether 25 defendants will be in the dock, of whom 24 are soldiers and one is a civilian. They will face charges in connection with the massacre of more than fifty people at a religious school in Beutong Ateuh, West Aceh on 23 July 1999; the head of the school, Tengku Bantaqiah, and several members of his family were among those shot dead.The trial will be heard before a koneksitas or 'inter-connection' court...

Ending the cycle of impunity. Can the East Timor Investigations Pave the Way?

24 January 2000

When three army generals were publicly grilled in November by members of Indonesia’s newly elected Parliament, the DPR, about atrocities in Aceh, the whole nation was transfixed by the three- hour spectacle on their television screens. Now, at last, after more than three decades of impunity, men with the blood of many victims on their hands were being called to account. Then on 24 December, General Wiranto, former commander-in-chief of the Indonesian armed forces, TNI, was summoned to appear before a civilian commission investigating crimes against humanity in East Timor. That he agreed to...

Crisis in Aceh threatens Indonesian unity

25 November 1999

Only months after the East Timorese cast an overwhelming vote for independence from 24 years of Indonesian rule, the national unity of Indonesia is being challenged once again as calls for self-determination in other regions escalate at an alarming rate. The most urgent of these upheavals is taking place in Aceh, a province on the North-western tip of the Indonesian archipelago, where a huge majority of the population are seeking an end to over 50 years of Javanese control.In a country made up of 13,000 islands, 213 million people, and hundreds of distinct ethnic and linguistic groups, many...

Report on East Timorese refugees in West Timor

11 November 1999

While international aid flows into East Timor, about a quarter of the country's population remains inside Indonesian West Timor. Many refugees want to return home, but they remain in West Timor only as a result of a campaign of human rights violations, intimidation and disinformation by armed groups within the refugee camps. Intimidation is also directed at international agencies resulting in the isolation of refugees from both humanitarian aid and repatriation efforts. So far only 28,000 refugees out of a total of 220,000 have been repatriated, while another 17,000 have crossed the border on...

The indictment of TNI officers for violations in East Timor

16 June 1999

The continued presence of the TNI, the Indonesian army, in East Timor in the run-up to the UN-conducted Consultation on 8 August 1999, is a major factor keeping the territory in a state of fear and tension. It is very regrettable that the Accords signed by Indonesia and Portugal under the aegis of the UN Secretary-General on 5 May 1999 did not provide for the withdrawal of TNI but said only that its forces should be 'redeployed'. To create an environment conducive to the free and fair conduct of the Consultation, the TNI should be withdrawn in its entirety. In the meanwhile, it is clear that...

East Timor under the Indonesian jackboot

15 October 1998

Occasional Report No. 26, Oct 98 - An Analysis of Indonesian Army DocumentsIn October 1998 a large number of Indonesian army documents found their way out of East Timor and landed on the desk of an East Timor solidarity activist in Australia. The documents, in total more than 100 pages, consist of numerous tables containing details of military personnel in East Timor and covering many aspects of the army's presence in the occupied country. They provide, for the first time ever, a comprehensive picture of the precise nature of the army's structure in the territory and the extent and depth of...