Rights group calls for independent investigation into TNI shootings in Papua

Kompas.com – April 18, 2020
Burial of Eden Armando Bebari and Ronny Wandik in Timika – April 11, 2020 (Suara Papua)

Tsarina Maharani, Jakarta – The Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (Kontras) is calling on the government to establish an independent team to investigate the fatal shooting of two people in Mimika, Papua, on April 13.

Eden Armando Bebari (19) and Ronny Wandik (23) were shot dead during a TNI (Indonesian military) operation at Mile 34 in the PT Freeport Indonesia mining area.

“We are urging the government to immediately form an independent team to conduct an investigation and review the incident with the involvement of external monitoring agencies such as the KPAI [Child Protection Commission], the Komnas HAM [National Human Rights Commission], the LPSK [Witness and Victim Protection Agency] and the Kompolnas [National Police Commission]”, said Kontras Coordinator Yati Andriyani on Saturday April 18.

Andriyani is also asking Komnas HAM to conduct an independent investigation to look into alleged human rights violations in the case.

Furthermore, she is asking that the legal process proceed in a manner which is accountable, fair and transparent and is urging the commander of the TNI (Panglima TNI) and the Indonesian police chief (Kapolri) to ensure that the legal process does not conceal the truth behind case.

“[I] urge the Panglima TNI and Kapolri to ensure and guarantee that the legal process into the case is pursued in a fair and transparent manner”, she said.

“Including ensuring that the TNI and Polri [Indonesian police] or elements of the Polri and TNI not to pursue actions aimed at covering up any liability in this case in accordance with prevailing laws”, said Andriyani.

At the same time, Andriyani is asking President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo to stop using a militaristic approach to maintain security in Papua. According to Andriyani, the government needs to prioritise peaceful and constructive dialogue with the Papuan people.

“[I] urge the president and his officials to stop using a security and militaristic approach in Papua. Hold peaceful and constructive dialogue with the Papuan people, including guaranteeing that there is no repeat of human rights violations in Papua”, she asserted.

As has been reported, two residents of Kwamki Narama district in Mimika, Eden Armando Bebari and Ronny Wandik, were shot dead at Mile 34 during TNI operations in the Freeport mining area.

Related to the incident, Cenderawasih XVII regional military commander Major General Herman Asaribab and Papua regional police chief Inspector General Paulus Waterpauw met with the families and relatives of the victims at the Mimika public hospital morgue.

Asaribab pledged that they will investigate the case. “There are officials who have already been appointed to conduct an investigation, so we can resolve [the case] and of course so a legal process can proceed”, said Asaribab on Tuesday April 14.

[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was “Kontras Minta Pemerintah Bentuk Tim Independen Investigasi Korban Penembakan TNI di Papua”.]

Source: https://nasional.kompas.com/read/2020/04/18/18471551/kontras-minta-pemerintah-bentuk-tim-independen-investigasi-korban-penembakan