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Prisoners of Conscience Being Tortured

Prisoners of Conscience Being Tortured

On 8 August two Papuan students, including a child, were arbitrarily detained for their peaceful political activism in Indonesia’s West Papua province. They are believed to have been tortured or otherwise ill-treated by police.

Robert Yelemaken, a 16-year old high school student, and Oni Wea, a 21-year old university student, are activists with the West Papua National Committee (Komite Nasional Papua Barat, KNPB), a pro-independence movement in Papua. They were arrested on 8 August at 3am local time in Manokwari district for painting pro-independence graffiti including calls for an independence referendum for Papua.

The two students are prisoners of conscience and should be released immediately and unconditionally. They were arrested and remain in detention solely for the peaceful exercise of their right to freedom of expression.

Amnesty International has received credible information that the two students were tortured or otherwise ill-treated during their arrest and in detention. According to local sources they were beaten and kicked by two arresting police officers. Robert Yelemaken was allegedly hit on the head and face with a rifle butt. Both were reportedly forced to roll in a drain filled with dirty water and were drenched in paint. They were then taken to the Manokwari District Police Station where the beatings allegedly continued.

Robert Yelemaken and Oni Wea are currently detained in a prison cell at the Criminal Investigation Unit at the Manokwari District Police Station. It has been reported that their faces are now swollen, lips are bleeding and they have pains in their chest. It is not known whether Robert Yelemaken, a child under international law, is being treated according to international standards on juvenile justice.

Please write immediately in Indonesian, English or your own language, demanding that the authorities:

Immediately and unconditionally release Robert Yelemaken and Oni Wea as they have been arrested solely for the peaceful exercise of their right to freedom of expression;

• Ensure that Robert Yelemaken and Oni Wea are not tortured or otherwise ill-treated;

• Ensure that the two students have access to their families, lawyers of their choice and any medical treatment that they require and moreover ensure that Robert Yelemaken is treated according to the international standards on juvenile justice;

Immediately order an effective and independent investigation into the allegations of torture and other ill- treatment. All those responsible for torture and other ill-treatment, including persons with chain of command responsibility, must be brought to justice in fair trials and victims provided with reparations.


Papua Regional Head of Police Jotje Mende
Jl. Samratulangi No. 8 Jayapura, Papua, Indonesia

Fax: +62 967 531014 / +62 967 533396

Salutation: Dear Brigadier General

Director General for Human Rights Harkristuti Harkrisnowo
Ministry of Law and Human Rights Jl. H.R. Rasuna Said Kav No. 4-5 Kuningan, Jakarta Selatan 12950, Indonesia

Fax: +62 215 253095

Salutation: Dear Harkristuti Harkrisnowo

And copies to:
Commission Secretary
Drs. Logan Siagian
National Police Commission
Jalan Tirtayasa VII
Nomor 20, Kebayoran Baru,
Jakarta Selatan, Indonesia
Fax: +62 217 392315

Also send copies to diplomatic representatives accredited to your country. Please insert local diplomatic addresses below:

Name Address 1 Address 2 Address 3 Fax Fax number Email Email address Salutation Salutation Please check with your section office if sending appeals after the above date.


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