Unconfirmed Reports Of Imminent Major Security Crackdown
from West Papua Media sources in Jaypura
January 15th, 2012
Across West Papua, a series of remarkable and disturbing text messages has been circulating the claim that Indonesian security forces are preparing a major security assault across Papua in an operation that allegedly began on February 10.
West Papua Media has been unable to speak with any of the alleged participants in the meeting, nor any official representative of the organisations present, to verify these reports. However local sources are reporting that security forces have intensified patrols and street presence in Jayapura at least that would correspond to such an operation.
According to the messages a meeting was held at the Hotel Aston at 10am on February 9, between Polda Papua senior police officers. Also at the meeting were the Papuan governor, the Commander of Cenderawasih Military District Erfi Triassunu, and officials from the Papua District Attorney, State Intelligence Body (BIN), the army Strategic Intelligence Agency (BAIS), senior Kopassus officers, and leaders from Barisan Merah Putih - the main pro-Indonesia militia. The meeting was allegedly being held against the threat of disintegration of Indonesia by separatist groups in Papua, according to the messages.
Participants allegedly raised the issue that "pro-merdeka" Papuan independence aspirations had been "globalized" and were attracting widespread international support especially after the brutal and heavy handed crackdown by Indonesian security forces on the Third Papuan People's Congress on October 19, 2010, according to the source.
The Memorandum assigned to officers present was to immediately raise "any safety risk to the smooth operation codes" - believed to indicate that security forces would be placed on high alert to prevent all expressions of self-determination. It continued:
"The main focus is for the treason trial of Forkorus Yaboisembut and colleagues, who should not be given (political or public) space to defend themselves to their (Papuan) people and release pressure on the Makar defendants. Any adverse condition in the control of the military from the Start Date (of) 10 February 2012 immediately increase security emergency."
The messages then hinted darkly at the final conclusion of the meeting: "Do not hesitate (in carrying out your duty if you have) to violate human rights for the sake of the sovereignty of Indonesia. "
The text messages were said by local human rights sources to have come from a "very reliable source close to the military". It is not known at this stage if these text messages have been circulated deliberately by military intelligence as a possible tension building exercise.
West Papua has been subjected to many false SMS rumour "storms" in the past as sources believed by observers to be Indonesian intelligence officers have circulated false and inciting claims of imminent communal violence. This includes a notorious case
Threats by SMS to human rights defenders and journalists are commonplace in Papua, widely believed to come from military sources.
Across Papua in recent weeks, SMS messages are also circulating claiming that "mysterious killings" are allegedly being perpetrated by Indonesian security forces against West Papuan civilians. Reports have been circulating that a man allegedly from Yakuhimo, Puncak Jaya, was killed and his mutiliated body turned up in Sentani, and another allegedly was found in a marketplace in Abepura. Additionally bodies have been reported as being found in similar circumstances in Timika and Wamena, but none of these reports have been able to be independently verified.
westpapuamedia | February 15, 2012