Human Rights Activists Arrested in West Papua

Human Rights Activists Arrested in West Papua

Human Rights Activists Arrested in West Papua Indonesia, News, Pacific, West Papua
July 24, 2012

Source: Tabloid Jubi

Following arrest of 15 members of the SKHP, Solidarity for Victims of Human Rights Abuse, the organisation has announced that it would seek to take action to bring members of the police force to trial for this round-up.

UPDATE: police have also re-arrested and detained former long-time political prisoner Yusak Pakage on spurious charges.

The 15 SKHP members were arrested while they were engaged in collecting money from the general public to cover the costs of medical treatment for political prisoners and other prisoners now being held in Abepura. The police claim that they had taken action against these SKHP activists on the grounds that the organisation was not formally recognised and that they had no permit to carry out the action they were involved in.

Spokesman for the SKHP, Peneas Lokbere, said that regardless of the actions taken by the police, they would continue to collect money.

Another member of SKHP, Bovit Bovra, said that the police and others should be grateful to their organisation for taking on the burden of caring for prisoners who are in need of medical care and attention.

A former deputy chairman of the National Commission for Human Rights in Papua, Matius Murib said that these arrests appear to be connected with the actsof violence that have been occurring in West Papua over the past two months. These actions had led to the arrest and shooting dead of Mako Tabuni, a human rights activist on 16 June, and threats made against Socrates Sofyan Yoman, the chairman of the Alliance of Baptist Churches in Papua.

He drew attention to acts of intimidation against human rights activists. He said that these arrests meant that the police were closing the space for activism by human rights activists and represented an assault against their democratic rights.


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