On March 16, 2002, we sent an urgent appeal about the attack on the office of Kontras (Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence) in Jakarta by unidentified Ambonese people on March 13. To follow up this appeal, we are forwarding you a letter sent to Indonesian President Megawati Sukarnoputri by Forum-Asia in Bangkok regarding this threat to human rights defenders in Indonesia,
We encourage you to also send similar letters to Megawati and other government officials listed below as well as copies to Mr. Asmara Nababan, secretary-general of Komnas HAM (National Commission for Human Rights), and Ms. Hina Jilani, special representative of the U.N. secretary-general on the situation of human rights defenders in Geneva, Switzerland.
We thank you for your urgent attention to this important matter for the protection of human rights in Indonesia.
Urgent Appeals Desk
Asian Human Rights Commission
APPEAL LETTER SENT BY FORUM-ASIA
The Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (Forum-Asia) would like to request that the Indonesian Government make investigation into and ensure that legal action be taken against those responsible for the attack on office of Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (KONTRAS) on 13 Mar 2002.
The Jakarta office of the Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (KONTRAS) was ransacked yesterday by an unknown group of thugs. The attackers forced their way into KONTRAS’ Data-Analysis Room, badly injuring data-analyst Edwin Partogi, and took key files relating to KONTRAS cases in Aceh, Papua and Maluka and Poso. Other staff members were severely beaten during the attack and many of the organization’s computers were destroyed.
The group of attackers, calling themselves the “Families of Cawang Victims 1998”, claimed that the attack was motivated by anger at KONTRAS’s unwillingness to take up the case of the “Cawang Victims”. “Cawang Victims” were pro-military vigilantes killed during clashes with pro-democracy student activists in Cawang Sub-District of East Jakarta in 1998. Since their deaths four years ago no family member of those killed in the incident has approached KONTRAS asking the organisation to take up the case. The group identifying themselves as family members of the “Cawang Victims” was previously unknown.
Forum-Asia is concerned that these attacks are a sign of the continued involvement of vigilante and paramilitary groups in Indonesian politics. We believe that the attacks on the KONTRAS office are part of a pattern of intimidation of Human Rights Defenders and Human Rights Organisations in Indonesia.
Forum-Asia calls on the Indonesian Government to immediately investigate the attacks, to take legal action against those responsible and those involved, and to take more effective measures to ensure the safety of Human Rights Defenders in Indonesia.
Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (Forum-Asia)
SEND LETTERS TO:
Mrs. Megawati Sukarnoputri
President, Republic of Indonesia
Jakarta, Istana Negara,
Fax: +62 21 345-7782
SALUTATION: Your Excellency
Marsillam Simandjuntak, SH
Attorney General of Indonesia
Attorney General’s Office
Fax: +62 21 720-8557
SALUTATION: Dear Attorney General
Mr. Ihza Mahendra YUSRIL
Minister of Justice and Human Rights
Uahi Utoyo Usman S.H., Menteri Kehkiman,
JI. H.R. Rosuna Said Kav. 6-7,
Kuningan, Jakarta Selatan, Indonesia
Fax: +62 21 525-3095
SALUTATION: Dear Minister
Gen. Surojo Bimantoro
National Chief of Police
No. 3 Kebayoran Baru
Tel: +62 21 721-8001
Fax: +62 21 720-7277
SALUTATION: Dear Gen. Bimantoro
SEND COPIES OF THE LETTER TO:
Mr. Asmara Nababan
Komnas HAM (National Commission for Human Rights)
Jl. Latuharhary No. 4B Menteng
Jakarta Pusat INDONESIA
Fax: +62 21 392-5227
SALUTATION: Dear Mr. Nababan
Ms. Hina Jilani
Special Representative of the Secretary-General on the
situation of human rights defenders
c/o OHCHR-UNOG, 1211 Geneva 10,
Fax: +41 22 917-9006
PLEASE MARK: ATT – SPECIAL RAPPORTEUR HINA JILANI