KNPB News is reporting that police have arrested Buchtar Tabuni, leader of West Papuan National Committee (KNPB), with two of his colleagues, Jufri Wandikbo and Assa Alua in Abepuara Circle, West Papua.
On June 4 the KNPB held a demonstration to press for investigations into a number of shooting incidents that have occurred in Papua recently. The large crowd of demonstrators were met by resistance from heavily armed Indonesian security forces. There were skirmishes and the security forces attacked the demonstrators. As a result of the violence three demonstrators were killed and ten were arrested.
KNPB News reports, “The arrest [of Buchtar Tabuni] was carried out as an effort to police the peace movement and to scapegoat the KNPB in order to avoid allegations of police inability to uncover the perpetrators of [recent] violence in Papua.”
Amnesty International considered Buchtar Tabuni a prisoner of conscience when he was previously arrested in 2008 for organizing protests against the accidental shooting of his relative, Opinus Tabuni. He served a three year prison sentence before being released in August, 2011.