News

14 May 2021

An urgent appeal on behalf of West Papuan pro-independence leader Victor Yeimo has been submitted by human rights organization TAPOL and lawyer Veronica Koman to the United Nations Special Procedures mechanisms of the Human Rights Council.

Victor Yeimo (37) was arrested on 9 May 2021 in Jayapura. He faces eleven charges including treason over his peaceful role in the 2019 West Papua Uprising. He had been living in exile in PNG since the crackdown against the Uprising and recently returned to his homeland. 

Tagged: Freedom of Expression, Political Prisoners, West Papua
7 May 2021
Aelex Flor in 2007

London, 7 May 2021

Yesterday we lost a dear colleague in Berlin, Alex Flor, the co-founder of Watch Indonesia! and its leader until 2019, after a short but serious illness. 

Tagged: Berita Kematian
31 Mar 2021

TAPOL strongly denounces the proposal put forward by the Indonesian National Counterterrorism Agency (BNPT/Badan Nasional Penanggulangan Terorisme) to categorise the Free Papua Organisation (OPM/Organisasi Papua Merdeka) as a terrorist organisation. Such a move will lead to more serious human rights abuses in West Papua.

Detachment 88, the anti-terrorism unit in Indonesia, which receives training and equipment from the United States and Australia, has been widely criticized by human rights groups for its notorious and disproportionate actions and being allowed to act with impunity. 

Tagged: Densus 88, Impunity, Security Sector Reform, West Papua
22 Mar 2021

TAPOL condemns the coup d’etat and violence against protestors by the Myanmar military, also known as the Tatmadaw. While we appreciate the work of the Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in Myanmar on this crisis, we regret the inaction of many United Nations (UN) member states which for the most part have done little despite the deteriorating situation. 

There are historical parallels between the involvement of the militaries of Myanmar and Indonesia in politics. After overthrowing civilian governments within a three year period (1962 in Myanmar, 1965 in Indonesia), each military portrayed itself as the only force able to unify very diverse nations. In Myanmar and Indonesia this often meant putting down pro-independence movements in areas distant from the centres of power. After 1998, the Indonesian military continued to commit human rights abuses to enforce the inclusion of West Papua, Aceh and East Timor in Indonesia with campaigns continuing in West Papua. In Myanmar, the military has forcibly excluded and committed atrocities against the Rohingya, and until the signing of ceasefire accords, fought wars against other ethnic groups. When a transition to democracy came in Indonesia, the military clung on to its business interests because civilian politicians were unwilling to enact reform; the Tatmadaw has also profited from extensive business interests. Many officers in Indonesia continue to be involved in political parties. After electoral defeat in 2015 to the National League for Democracy (NLD), current coup leader Min Aung Hlaing focussed on securing continued military influence in state institutions.

 

Tagged: Crimes Against Humanity
17 Dec 2020

Indigenous tribes such as the Kamoro and the Amungme have been claiming their communities have been afflicted with poverty, violence and mostly environmental degradation since the Grasberg mine operated by PT Freeport Indonesia began its activities 48 years ago. Turning the spotlight again on this critical issue, the ICP, together with the Indonesia Legal Aid Foundation (YLBHI), the Initiative Action for Ecology and Peoples' Emancipation (AEER), the Center for Study, Documentation and Advocacy on Peoples' Rights (PUSAKA), Friends of the Earth Papua (WALHI Papua), the Lokataru Law and Human Rights Office, INTERPRT, TAPOL, VIVAT International, Westpapua-Netzwerk (WPN), Geneva for Human Rights (GHR), and Franciscans International (FI) has launched today a new special report called "PT Freeport Indonesia and its tail of violations in Papua: human, labour and environmental rights". The 27-page publication covers detailed aspects of different human rights violations involving the Freeport-McMoRan's Indonesian subsidiary, PT Freeport Indonesia, during the last years.

Tagged: Freeport, Indigenous Rights, West Papua
8 Dec 2020

Since the fall of the New Order regime (1966-1998), with one brief period of exception between 1998-2001, the power and authority of the Indonesian security forces in the region of West Papua have remained largely undiminished. We attribute this to two reasons, both of which stem from a failure to implement genuine political reform in West Papua and Indonesia more broadly. 

Tagged: Security Forces, Security Sector Reform, West Papua

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