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Presidium arrests - draft letter to Indonesia


5 December 2000

Note - the contact details for the Indonesian embassy (London) in Nick’s alert below have been changed to those for the embassy here in Aotearoa / New Zealand.

Dear friends,

I have drafted an Amnesty-style letter to the Indonesian authorities to protest against the arrest of 4 key members of the Papuan Presidium Council. A fifth, the anthropologist Don A.L. Flassy has also returned from Jakarta to Jayapura prepared to hand himself in after police orders for his arrest. This is only the tip of the iceberg of the new wave of human rights violations, with the flag taken down across the country and large numbers of civilians arrested, shot, etc. It is reputed that 70 members of SATGAS Papua, including many women, have been loaded on a ship and have not been seen since. In the past, Indonesian authorities took Papuans out at sea were they were drowned.. We should not wait until Amnesty issues something, it can take another week and post to Indonesia is very slow.

In solidarity, Nick Angelopoulos,CamPeace

Please send this or a similar letter to the Indonesian Ambassador: Mrs Titiek S Rustaman, Embassy of Indonesia, PO Box 3543, Wellington, tel (04) 475 8699, fax (04) 475 9374.

Commissioner-General Bimantoro
Markas Besai Kepolisian RI
Jl Trunojoyo 3
Kebayoran Baru
Jakarta Selatan

Dear Commissioner-General,

I have learnt of the arrests of Theys Eluay, Thaha Al Hamid, Jhon Mambor and Don A.L. Flassy by the Indonesian police in the last days of November. It is my understanding that they have not caused an offence under Indonesian law. It is within all people's rights to campaign peacefully for their beliefs and aspirations.

Theys Eluay and Thaha Al Hamid have been charged with treason/subversion. Theys Eluay indeed was one of the Papuan chiefs who voted for integration with Indonesia in the 1969 Act of Free Choice. Indonesia undertook in 1962 with the New York Agreement to carry out a referendum on self-determination in the former Dutch New Guinea in accordance with international practice. It may be argued that as this has not happened yet, no Papuan can be charged with treason under Indonesian laws 106/110.

I urge you to see that the four detainees are not ill-treated. Until the status of Papua/Irian Jaya can be decided by an internationally recognised act of self determination no-one should be held under arrest on charges of subversion, treason or separatism. The four detainees should be discharged immediately and unconditionally.

Yours respectfully,

(put your name and address here).

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