Political prisoners on the rise (March – June 2018)

Download in pdf format: PBB June 2018.EN

Summary

Over the past four months,eleven West Papuan people have become political prisoners. The case profiles below are listed in chronological order of when they were arrested between March to June 2018. All charges listed are referenced in the Indonesian Criminal Code unless otherwise noted. A full list of articles with brief descriptions are listed at the bottom of the report.

The first three political prisoners listed are members of the West Papua National Committee (KNPB). They were arrested together for beating two unknown men at their secretariat. The case might look like ordinary criminal case on first glance. However, we believe that the incident reflects some political aspect. The KNPB headquarter is known as a “hot spot” in Jayapura. People usually feel reluctant to pass the area, let alone enter, because of the stigma and heavy monitoring by security forces. Therefore, it is suspicious that two ‘medicine sellers’ would randomly come to visit and not leave when requested. Criminalisation against KNPB members in connection to assault, arms possession, theft, etc. is common, and often used by security forces as a tactic to offer a counter narrative to politically-motivated arrests.

The arrests of the other eight people show that there has been crackdown against freedom fighters and civilians who are thought to be freedom fighters of the West Papua Liberation Army (TPNPB). The TPNPB declared war against Indonesian security forces in August 2017 in Tembagapura, Timika. The recent arrests include those in Timika, Nabire, Mulia, and Wamena. Titus Kwalik and Julianus Dekme might have been arrested by the anti-terror squad Detachment 88, based on the description that the police were wearing “all blacks”, colours associated with this Special Forces policing unit. This is very problematic because, by law, neither civilians nor freedom fighters should be handled by a National anti-terror squad.

Police violated the domestic procedural criminal law in all cases, mainly regarding the obligation to provide letters of arrest and detention. Ill treatment was also present in cases involving people thought to be freedom fighters.

More political prisoners are anticipated in coming months because the continuing stand-off between TPNPB and Indonesian security forces, particularly in the area of Timika.

Overview of cases

Anderson Suhuniap
Age: 16
Date of arrest: 7 March 2018
Status: Awaiting trial
Charges: Article 170(1)

Anderson Suhuniap is a member of the West Papua National Committee (KNPB). On 27 February 2018, two unknown men who identified themselves as medicine sellers came to the KNPB secretariat in Jayapura. KNPB members asked them to leave when the two men failed to show the medicines they claimed to be selling. A fight broke out when they refused to leave. Police later arrested eight KNPB members for assault; five were released. Suhuniap is now detained at Jayapura police station.

Both letters of arrest and detention were provided only after being detained. Suhuniap is still underage, and according to domestic law, should have been placed in a youth detention centre.

Rizal Pahabol
Age: 19
Date of arrest: 7 March 2018
Status: Awaiting trial
Charges: Article 170(1)

Rizal Pahabol is a member of the West Papua National Committee (KNPB). On 27 February 2018, two unknown men who identified themselves as medicine sellers came to the KNPB secretariat in Jayapura. KNPB members asked them to leave when the two men failed to show the medicines they claimed to be selling. A fight broke out when they refused to leave. Police later arrested eight KNPB members for assault; five were released. Rizal Pahabol is now detained in Abepura prison.

Both letters of arrest and detention were provided only after being detained.

Misi Sowi Pahabol
Age: 18
Date of arrest: 7 March 2018
Status: Awaiting trial
Charges: Article 170(1)

Misi Sowi Pahabol is a member of the West Papua National Committee (KNPB). On 27 February 2018, two unknown men who identified themselves as medicine sellers came to the KNPB secretariat in Jayapura. KNPB members asked them to leave when the two men failed to show the medicines they claimed to be selling. A fight broke out when they refused to leave. Police later arrested eight KNPB members for assault; five were released. Misi Sowi Pahabol is now detained in Abepura prison. Both letters of arrest and detention were provided only after being detained.

Tandius (Tandi) Kogoya
Date of birth: Unknown
Date of arrest: 15 April 2018
Status: Undergoing police investigation
Charges: Articles 340, 187, 170 (1); and Emergency Law on arms possession.

Tandius Kogoya is a freedom fighter of the West Papua Liberation Army (TPNPB). He was arrested in Topo, Margajaya Village, Uwapa District, Nabire Regency, after being listed along with 20 other people on a police wanted list. According to him, he was taken inside a car with dark glass windows and driven around for some time before being detained in Kuala Kencana police station in Timika.

Police failed to show arrest and detention letters to Kogoya during the arrest as required by the law, nor was his family notified. Kogoya is currently detained in a small, isolated room with poor air circulation. He is not allowed visitation, including from his visiting family, except his lawyer.

Yogor Telenggen
Date of birth: 23 June 1988
Date of arrest: 12 May 2018
Status: Sentenced to life imprisonment
Charges: Article 340, 187 jo 55(1)(1), 365(1), 365(4)

Yogor Telenggen is a freedom fighter of the West Papua Liberation Army (TPNPB). He was previously sentenced for life in prison in 2013 but escaped Abepura prison on 8 January 2016. He was re-arrested at approximately 4 pm on 12 May in Puncak Jaya regency.

Telenggen was shot below the knee during arrest. He was subsequently taken to Bhayangkara hospital in Jayapura for treatment. His whereabouts was unknown for almost a month following his arrest. Neither he nor his family was given arrest and detention letters. He is currently detained in Jayapura at the headquarters of Brimob (Mobile Brigade Corps, a special unit of the Indonesia National Police).

Roy Hiluka
Age: 28 years old
Date of arrest: 2 June 2018
Status: Undergoing police investigation
Charges: Emergency Law on arms possession

Roy Hiluka is a civilian. He was arrested together with Eki Wanena. He was arrested in Wamena but is currently detained at Papua police station in Jayapura.

Eki Wanena
Age: Unknown
Date of arrest: 2 June 2018
Status: Undergoing police investigation
Charges: Emergency Law on arms possession

Eki Wanena is a civilian. He was arrested together with Roy Hiluka in Wamena but is currently detained at Papua police station in Jayapura.

Watlarik Hiluka
Age: 55 years old
Date of arrest: 3 June 2018
Status: Undergoing police investigation
Charges: Emergency Law on arms possession

Watlarik Hiluka is a civilian suspected by police to be a freedom fighter of the West Papua Liberation Army (TPNPB). At around 11.30 a.m. on 3 June 2018, both plain-clothed and fully-armed uniformed police came to his house while he was hosting four friends. Police fired two shots into the air and one to the ground, demanding to know which person was Watlarik. Both houses on the property, one a traditional honai house, were ransacked by police. Hiluka’s face was kicked twice during the interrogation while one of the friends, Nandus Hiluka, was hit twice in the face. Police also threatened to shoot Roy Hiluka, Watlarik Hiluka, and Nandus Hiluka, and to burn both houses. Watlarik Hiluka surrendered two packs of ammunition to the police and was taken to the Jayawijaya police station.

Titus Kwalik
Date of birth: 8 June 1966 (48 years old)
Date of arrest: 10 June 2018
Status: Undergoing police investigation
Charges: Emergency Law on arms possession

Titus Kwalik is a civilian suspected by police to be a freedom fighter of the West Papua Liberation Army (TPNPB). He was arrested at around 3 a.m. at his house in Timika on 10 June 2018. The arrest was conducted by fully armed police wearing all-black uniforms. When the house was raided, Kwalik’s wife was beaten with a rifle butt and then pushed when she did not answer police questioning his whereabouts. Police told his wife that Kwalik was detained at the Timika headquarters of Brimob (Mobile Brigade Corps, a special unit of the Indonesia National Police), but did not provide the reason of why he was arrested.

The letters of arrest and detention were given only on 12 June 2018. Access to family is prohibited, whereas access to meet with his lawyer is limited.

Julianus Dekme
Age: 31 years old
Date of arrest: 10 June 2018
Status: Undergoing police investigation
Charges: Emergency Law on arms possession

Julianus Dekme is a civilian suspected by police to be a freedom fighter of the West Papua Liberation Army (TPNPB). He was arrested at around 3 am on 10 June 2018 at his house in Timika by approximately 10 police officers wearing all-black uniforms. He was beaten on his back and his house was damaged during arrest. Police also took money that was kept in his house, including from his wife’s wallet, in total amounting to approximately two hundred million rupiah (~ USD 14,000). Police allegedly came to the family several times to try to return the money. The family refused and insisted that the money should only be returned with a receipt from the head of Timika police. Dekme is currently detained at the Timika headquarters of Brimob (Mobile Brigade Corps, a special unit of the Indonesia National Police).

The letters of arrest and detention not presented until 12 June 2018. Access to family is prohibited, whereas access to meet with his lawyer is limited.

Aloysius Ogolmagai (49 years old), who has a speech impairment, was with Dekme during arrest, was also wrongfully arrested. He was released on 12 June 2018. No notification was given to his family.

Polce Tsugomol
Date of birth: 1994 (he forgot the day and month)
Date of arrest: 9 June 2018
Status: Undergoing police investigation
Charges: Emergency Law on arms possession

Polce Tsugomol is a civilian who was suspected by police to be a freedom fighter of the West Papua Liberation Army (TPNPB). He was arrested on 9 June 2018 in Timika. While walking home, he was approached by police who pointed gun at him and demanded him to show them where he was hiding ammunition. He was taken to Timika police station after surrendering the ammunition to the police, which had been stored in a pig shed.

The letters of arrest and detention were given on 12 June 2018, three days after his arrest. Access to family is prohibited, whereas access to meet with his lawyer is limited.

Orpa Wanjomal (40 years old), Tsugomol’s stepmother, was wrongfully arrested together with Dekme because she was walking with him during the arrest. She was released on 12 June 2018.

List of articles cited from the Indonesian Criminal Code

170(1)                     Assault

170(1)                     Assault

340                         Murder

187                         Arson

55(1)(1)                  Assisting crime

365(1)                     Theft

365(4)                     Causing severe injury or death to another person

List of contributing sources

All source reports were verified by Papuans Behind Bars.

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