News

15 Nov 2021

On Nov. 11, the UK Foreign Secretary, Liz Truss, visited Indonesia during a week-long trip to Southeast Asia. Truss’s outing happened in the context of the UK’s post-Brexit objectives of “tilting” towards the Indo-Pacific region.

In her meetings with Indonesian President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo and Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi, Truss aimed to deepen cooperation between the UK and Indonesia in economy, security and technology.  

Yet there are several issues which should also have been aired by Truss during her visit. The question of the military’s continuing power and its impact on human rights and democracy requires honesty from the UK side. More could have been done on environmental issues too. The meeting was also an opportunity for the Indonesian Government to reflect on continuing challenges in these areas in order to fully realize ongoing democratic reforms.  

Tagged: 1965 massacres, Democracy, UK
9 Nov 2021

TAPOL is deeply concerned about a series of escalating threats and attacks made against the family of prominent Indonesian human rights lawyer and defender, Veronica Koman in Jakarta. These threats and attacks indicate a worsening situation for human rights lawyers and defenders in Indonesia, with other prominent human rights defenders being subjected to police investigations. 

The incidents against Koman’s family have in recent weeks involved an arson attack outside the house of her parents on 24th October. Two weeks later, on Sunday 7th November, assailants left an explosive device outside her parents’ house. A package containing a dead chicken was also sent to a different relative, with a note stating that “anyone who helps to hide Veronica Koman will end up like this”. 

Tagged: Democracy, Human Rights Defenders
3 Nov 2021

TAPOL is sad to report the death of Max Stahl, the legendary journalist and filmmaker who will be remembered, above all, for filming the Santa Cruz massacre in East Timor on November 12, 1991. The massacre of 271 people happened in the Santa Cruz cemetery in Dili, where Indonesian security forces opened fire on graveside mourners. It was a turning point in the Indonesian occupation of East Timor. Max’s footage came about whilst he was preparing material for the television documentary ‘In Cold Blood: the Massacre of East Timor’. It was shown in many countries and played an important role in pressurising western governments, and the incoming Clinton administration, to abandon support for Indonesia’s illegal occupation of East Timor.

Tagged: Timor-Leste
3 Nov 2021

Media Statement

London, 3 November 2021

UK Government should apologise for encouraging 1960s massacres of alleged leftists in Indonesia and appoint independent counsel to investigate 

Tagged: 1965 massacres, Enforced Disappearances, Extrajudicial Execution
2 Nov 2021

Dear Chief Marsekal TNI Hadi Tjahjanto,

ELSHAM Papua is supported by 24 institutions and civil society organisations from across the land of Papua, throughout Indonesia, and internationally, expressing deep concern over the shooting of two children in Sugapa, Intan Jaya Regency, Melpianus Sondegau (2 years old) who died, and Yoakim Majau (6 years old) was a victim of gunshot wounds. The shooting of these two children was a result of gunfire from the joint military and police forces who fired successively at TPN-PB groups in Sugapa, Intan Jaya Regency, Tuesday, October 26, 2021.

Tagged: West Papua
5 Oct 2021

Increasing militarization for most Indonesians appears to be limited to West Papua and Poso. However, D-88 has already abused its mandate in Java in pursuit of alleged terrorists without having been properly held to account by Government Institutions (including the National Commission for Human Rights, Komnas HAM) or other civil society organisations that may fear the consequences of questioning the legality of its operations. Likewise, the military operates in plain sight in Java with a visible public role, pronouncing on political affairs and with former army officers assuming roles in Government and the civil service. In other words, security force operations against ‘terrorists’ in West Papua are not as distant as is assumed. But this also means that with coordinated effort, the public in Indonesia and beyond may yet have the potential to hold their power to account and end impunity.

Tagged: Densus 88, Impunity, Police, Security Forces, West Papua

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