Student rally in Makassar demanding justice for past rights abuses ends in clash

CNN Indonesia – September 12, 2023
Police on guard outside Makassar State University following clash – September 12, 2023 (Tribune)

Makassar – A demonstration by the Makassar State University (UNM) Student Alliance demanding a resolution to cases of past human rights violations in Indonesia has ended in a clash with police. Three protesters were also arrested at the rally on Tuesday September 12.

The protest action in front of the UNM campus on Jalan AP Pettarani began at around 5 pm with students setting fire to tyres and closing off the road resulting in a traffic jam.

The students were demanding that past cases of human rights violations in Indonesia, including the 1965 September 30 Movement (G30S) case, the Tanjung Priok tragedy, the Semanggi student shootings in 1997-98, the 2007 assassination of renowned human rights defender Munir, the murder of environmental activist Salim Kancil in 2015 and the five victims of the Reform Corrupted (#ReformasiDikorupsi) demonstrations 2019, be fully resolved.

Towards evening, the students blockaded the road in front of the campus by detaining a box vehicle and truck that were used as a platform to convey their demands. They then closed off two lanes of traffic on Jalan Raya Pendidikan.

At around 6.50 pm, police officers on guard at the location moved in and forcibly broke up the rally resulting in students fleeing into the campus and fighting back by throwing stones at police.

Police responded by firing teargas and conducting sweeps in the vicinity of the UNM campus resulting in three students being arrested.

The three arrested students were UNM Social Science and Law Faculty office officials MSA (19), RI (18) and KT (17). The three students were then taken to the Makassar metropolitan district police headquarters (Mapolrestabes) for questioning.

Makassar metropolitan district police chief (Kapolrestabes) Senior Commissioner Mokhamad Ngajib who on duty at the location declined to elaborate on the incident. (mir/isn)

[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "Demo Mahasiswa di Makassar Ricuh, 3 Orang Ditangkap".]