Activist Jefry Wenda, 6 others arrested at rally against new Papua regions

CNN Indonesia – May 10, 2022
Police arrest Papua People's Petition spokesperson Jefry Wenda – May 10, 2022 (Antara)

Jakarta – Police arrested at least seven people in relation to a protest action in Jayapura on Tuesday May 10 against the creation of new autonomous regions (DOB) in Papua.

Papua regional police spokesperson Senior Commissioner AM Kamal explained that one of the people arrested was Papua People's Petition (PRP) spokesperson Jefry Wenda. Police allege they violated the Information and Electronic Transaction (ITE) Law.

"Earlier this afternoon (12.35 pm) a joint team of Papua regional police and Jayapura city municipal police secured JW, who is the PRP spokesperson, at the Papua Kontras [Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence] office secretariat at the Hedam sub-district State Housing Company IV in Heram district, Jayapura city", Kamal told journalists.

He said that the initials of the other six people arrested along with Wenda were OS, OB, NI, MM, AD and IK. Police said that they also seized a computer. The seven people were then questioned at the Jayapura city municipal police headquarters.

"JW is suspected of violating the ITE Law in relation to a leaflet or call which he circulated publically and he has admitted to being the person responsible for the action earlier today", Kamal explained.

According to Kamal, police have studied one of the sentences in the call by Wenda inviting people to join the protest. It is alleged that this violated Article 45a Paragraph 2 of Law Number 19/2019 on Revisions to Law Number 11/2008 on the ITE Law.

The police however have yet to reveal further details on the call which resulted in Wenda being arrested. "Let us look into it, in this clarification. We will provide space for legal assistance for the seven people", he said.

If charged and convicted under these articles, Wenda could be subject to a maximum sentence of six years in prison and a maximum fine of 1 billion rupiah. (mjo/kid)

[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "Polisi Tangkap Aktivis Papua Jefry Wenda Terkait Demo Tolak DOB".]