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TAPOL calls on the UK Government to apologise for its role on 1960s massacre in Indonesia

On 17 and 24 October, the Observer newspaper published new research undertaken by academics and journalists, disclosing the existence in 1965 of a covert unit in the UK Foreign Office. The unit spread disinformation purporting to be from Indonesian ‘patriots’ living outside Indonesia, encouraging massacres.

Indonesians paying £20 million for weapons used in repression

By tomorrow, 1 December 2012, the Indonesian people are due to pay the UK government £27 million. Of this, £20 million is for arms sales to past dictator General Suharto.

In the 1980s and 1990s, the UK government’s UK Export Finance backed loans to Suharto’s regime to buy British exports, including weapons such as Hawk aircraft and Scorpian tanks. £400 million is still ‘owed’ to the UK government on these loans, and the next instalment is due to be paid.

UK training of Kopassus

To read the Foreign Office response, please download the PDF file.

Dear Mr Miliband,

TAPOL is deeply concerned about the decision by the UK’s Joint Counter Terrorist Training and Advisory Team to organise training for members of Indonesia’s special forces, Kopassus, in October this year at the Kopassus training facility in Batujajar, Central Java.

We understand that the decision to undertake that training is justified on the grounds that Kopassus has distanced itself from politics and now respects human rights.

Britain and Indonesia: Too close for comfort?

President's visit prompts fresh concerns about arms sales and training of anti-terror police

30 October 2012 – British-funded training of Indonesia’s anti-terror police, Special Detachment 88, should be reviewed in the light of serious concerns about the unit’s human rights record and its operations in Papua, says TAPOL ahead of a state visit to London by Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono from 31 October to 2 November 2012.

UK defends Indonesia arms sales as military run riot in Papua

Today UK human rights campaigners called for an immediate ban on all arms sales to Indonesia, following Wednesday’s brutal rampage by Indonesian security forces in the troubled Papua region.

TAPOL, a UK group campaigning to improve human rights in Indonesia, today received a statement from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office defending UK arms sales to Indonesia as “promoting security and stability.” TAPOL also today received reports of military attacks in Wamena, Papua, with a number of civilians suffering gunshot and stab wounds.

TAPOL letter urges PM to stop selling arms to Indonesia

Dear Mr Cameron,

TAPOL has been closely following your visit to Indonesia this week. We note that you praised Indonesia as a ‘Democracy (which) offers hope to the Muslim World’. You were also quoted as saying that you had decided ‘to relax controls of arms exports to Indonesia … as a sign of Indonesia’s democratic maturity’. Your delegation to Indonesia included representatives from several British arms manufacturers.

Letter to HE Mark Canning on MIFEE, Papua

Dear Ambassador,

Forest Peoples Programme, Down to Earth, TAPOL and Survival International thank you for inviting us to participate in the Indonesia and East Timor Civil Society Human Rights Roundtable, held at Carlton Gardens on February 7 2012. The wide-ranging discussion held that morning provided a unique opportunity to share with you issues of ongoing concern, identify areas of progress, and be informed on UK policy and the Embassy’s work pertinent to these matters.

Foreign Office Response to Tapol on Papua torture case

The Foreign Office responds to Tapol's Letter of 19 October 2010 regarding the recent torture case in Papua. TAPOL called on the government to press Indonesia for an immediate investigation. In their reply they state that they have encouraged Indonesia to investigate the case, and outline the nature of their current engagement on the issue of Indonesia's armed forces and human rights.

To read the Foreign Office reply in full, please download the PDF file.