Members of the House of Lords held a debate about West Papua on 24 July in which they raised serious concerns about the human rights situation and called on the British government to take a stronger stand.
As the UK prepares to receive the President of Indonesia for the first state visit in decades, UK groups prepare an alternative welcome for the President.
Civil society groups question UK-Indonesia ties
Fourteen years ago, the downfall of President Suharto in 1998 set Indonesia on a course of reform and democratic transition that has impressively transformed the country from a harshly repressive dictatorship to a chaotic yet functional democracy.
But many problems remain. The country’s overall record on human rights, the rule of law and religious freedoms, still falls far short of accepted international standards.
On 18 October, members of the anti-terrorist squad, Detachment 88 arrested Iwanggin Sabar Olif, a human rights activist in Jayapura. A few days later, he was moved to Jakarta where he is now being held at police headquarters. The involvement of Detachment 88 in his arrest raises fears that he may be subjected to mal-treatment and is likely to face serious charges.
Iwanggin Sabar Olif is a respected lawyer who works for the well-known human rights organization, ELSHAM in West Papua.