International NGOs appeal alleged poisoning of Papuan activist

23 Dec 2013
Danny Kogoya

Today TAPOL, the Human Rights and Peace for Papua (ICP), Fransiscans International, the West Papua Netzwerk (WPN) and the Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) issued an urgent appeal alerting the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial executions to the alleged poisoning of Papuan activist Danny Kogoya.

Danny Kogoya, a citizen of Papua province, Indonesia, died on the morning of 15 December 2013 in Vanimo, Papua New Guinea. A medical report issued by Vanimo General Hospital stated that he died of liver failure provoked by the presence of unusual chemical materials in his body.

A relative of Danny Kogoya submitted the medical report to the Vanimo Court House which, after studying the document, called for Danny’s death to be treated as a murder case. On 17 December 2013, the Court issued an order calling for an autopsy. However, as the autopsy was about to be conducted in the afternoon of the same day, representatives of the Indonesian government intervened in order that the autopsy was postponed. This raises the suspicion that the Indonesian government has been involved in the death of Danny Kogoya.

In September 2012, Danny Kogoya was shot in his right leg by the Indonesian security forces. He was later taken to Bhayangkara Kotaraja police hospital where he received medical treatment for two weeks without being permitted to receive visits from his family. During his stay in the hospital, Danny had his right leg amputated without his or his family’s consent. There is an allegation that the unusual chemical materials were put into his body during this time.

The five international NGOs issuing the appeal called on the Special Rapporteur to take immediate action urging the government of Papua New Guinea to conduct an independent investigation on the death of Danny Kogoya, despite the attempts of the Indonesian government to obstruct the process. THey also requested that the Special Rapporteur should urge the Indonesian government not to interfere with the ongoing criminal investigation ordered by the Vanimo Court House and to respect the sovereignty of Papua New Guinea.

To read the full Urgent Appeal, Letter of Allegation and case details, click here.