Posts Tagged ‘cholera’

Indonesian Security Forces attack Human Rights Defender and pro democracy demonstrators in Nabire

February 2, 2009

Human Rights Report                              Monday 2 February 2009

Indonesian Security Forces attack Human Rights Defender and pro democracy demonstrators in Nabire, West Papua

Indonesian Security forces have attacked a group of 100 local people protesting about delays in local election in Nabire. As the police attacked some of the demonstrators telephoned Mr. Yones Douw, a respected human rights activist from the Kingmi church and asked him to come. When Mr. Douw arrived and began documenting the violence the Police attacked him.

Local eyewitnesses, say that Yones Douw was kicked by police officers with their boots 3 times, then beaten on the side of his head and then punched in the face and before being arrested.

Seven of the demonstrators were also arrested.  An unreported number of others were also beaten and shot by police.   Those arrested, including Yones Douw, were released after being held in custody for one day.

The Institute for Papuan Advocacy & Human Rights (IPAHR) has compiled a more detailed report about the incident, including details of the injuries to Yones Douw & thirteen local people.  The range of injuries to the demonstrators included five people who suffered serious wounds after being shot by rubber bullets in the body & stomach. Others received head injuries and puncture wounds to the head, body limbs & feet after being kicked, beaten and shot with rubber bullets.

A local source has stated that a range of security personnel participated in these abuses, including units from the Police Dalmas and a unit of the notorious Brimob, Indonesia’s para-military Police, together with members of the Indonesian National Intelligence Service, BIN and military officers from Army Battalion 753 Nabire.

Paula Makabory from IPAHR said,  “The original cause of the peaceful demonstration in Nabire is that the local election, PILKADA, has been postponed 3 times since October 2008.  The budget for the Nabire Region has been allocated and the Provincial Secretary, Mr Umar Kacili, a man from Sulawesi, has been effectively acting as Regent.”

“It appears that the local people are concerned that the budget is being administered by an unelected Regency Secretary to the Regency and that the local people interests will be ignored.”

“The Nabire & Paniai region has a long history of state violence, especially against the Mee people and members of the Kingmi church. Human Rights abuses routinely occur.   It is an area where community health and education services have been neglected by the State.  In 2008 two outbreaks of Cholera occurred.  One of these outbreaks is ongoing and has caused hundreds of deaths. The area has mineral resources, including some surface gold mining operations which appear to be managed by the Indonesian security forces.”

“In many regions of West Papua there is dysfunction in the process of Regency elections but in this case local people are organised enough to protest the delay in local elections,” said Paula Makabory.

“The Institute for Papuan Advocacy & Human Rights demands that Indonesian Government, international governments and international Agencies at least take note of the ongoing violence occurring in West Papua at hands of Indonesian security forces and intelligence services.”

“The Indonesian Government must act to reverse the increasing violence perpetrated by Indonesian security forces, particularly by Brimob, in West Papua, in the lead up to the Indonesian General Election in April 2009.  That West Papuan people be allowed to exercise their democratic rights of organisation and assembly and vote without threat to their lives, intimidation and violence.”

In particular IPAHR notes that:

1.    Indonesian police have brutality attacked Indigenous West Papuans who were a conducting a peaceful demonstration seeking democratic process in local elections in Nabire. From what local sources have told IPAHR it is clear that the head of police in Nabire, Commander Rinto Jatmono is directly responsible for the assault  of these people by ordering this attack. This event should be investigated to determine who gave the order to attack, as this kind of state violence is widespread in West Papua. There is a pattern of similar state violence in Nabire including an attack by Police on members of the Kingmi Church in December 2008;

2.    Indonesian Security forces have attacked a recognised Human Rights Defender in Nabire. The Indonesian Government must ensure that the personal safety of Human Rights Defenders are safeguarded. Their role must be recognized as being crucial to bringing Peace in West Papua;

3.    The Indonesian Government should allow free international media access to West Papua so that Indonesian Government activities can be internationally accountable;

4.    Outside and international observers should be allowed by the Indonesian Government to monitor elections in West Papua.

For further information contact Institute for Papuan Advocacy & Human Rights:

–    Paula Makabory +61 402547517

–    Matthew Jamieson +61 418291998

Further Detail of Human Rights Report:   2 February 2009  Indonesian Security Forces attack Human Rights Defender and pro democracy demonstrators in Nabire is available at…tors-in-nabirefurther-report-indonesian-security-forces-attack-human-rights-defender-and-pro-democracy-demonstrators-in-nabire/

A photograph of Yones Douw is available from site above and one request.


Cholera outbreak in West Papua: Indonesian Government response ineffective

July 21, 2008

West Papua Human Rights Report,  29 June 08

Cholera outbreak in West Papua:  Indonesian Government response ineffective

New reports from Human Rights and Church sources in West Papua state that 85 people have died in a Cholera outbreak over the past 3 months in the adjacent Nabire and Paniai regencies of West Papua.

Previous reports by Indonesian authorities in early June stated 17 people had died. At that time Health authorities disputed figures from West Papuan Human Rights workers that there had actually been 34 fatalities if cases in the villages were counted.

“This latest Cholera outbreak started in April and has continued through to June 2008. Based on information supplied from the ground the Institute of Papuan Advocacy and Human Rights believes that the Indonesian Health Department and Provincial government response has been grossly inadequate.  It appears that people were treated in the community health centers when people were able to physically carried there but the government response in those affected villages was very limited.”

“Indeed for the Government personnel the response was a matter of mutual blaming and a refusal to take responsibility. Everybody in the Government has avoided taking responsibility and has blamed each other for what went wrong.”

The Papua Health Office was reported in the Jakarta Post (June 4th, 2008,) as identifying an ‘Ogawa-type vibrio cholera viral infection’ following tests in Jayapura.

Cholera, which is a bacterial disease, attacks the gut lining with infected people quickly developing symptoms of severe diarrhea & massive fluid loss. The disease can be fatal within 18 hours if re-hydration & therapy does not occur.

This Cholera epidemic was first reported in Paniai in early April 2008 at Ekemanida village. It has spread to nearby villages at Kamuu and North Kamuu Districts. The villages where the disease was reported are Ekemanida, Idakotu, Dogimani/Idadagi, Makidimi/Egebutu, Ekimani/Nuwa, Denemani/Apagogi, Kimupugi, Dikiyouwo, Duntek, Boduda, Deiyai, Goodide, Idakebo, Mogou and Dogimani.

In March, April 2006, in the highland regencies of Jayawijaya and Yahukimo 178 and 33 indigenous West Papuans respectively died reportedly from Cholera epidemics.

Paula Makabory representing the Institute for Papuan Advocacy and Human Rights said, “Cases of fatal diarrhea, which include undiagnosed Cholera, have been increasingly reported in Nabire and Highland areas of West Papua in the past few years.”

Paula Makabory also said today, “ Earlier this month our organisation alerted the World Health Organisation (WHO) of this current Cholera outbreak but that organisation in Indonesia appears to have not responded.  We contacted the WHO because previous experience is that the Indonesian Government agencies and provincial government would not mount an adequate response.”

“Although there are massive amounts of money available to government in West Papua that money is not being used to control the contagious diseases, which also includes HIV/AIDS, TB, as well as Malaria, in the indigenous population. Little of the Special Autonomy funds budgeted for health is being effectively.  West Papua remains closed to access from international NGO and the media so none knows what is happening.”

“The Special Autonomy process which Jakarta set up 7 years ago is not serving the peoples education and health needs. Many West Papuans view the combination of lack of health services and military occupation as deliberate and ‘Genocide’.”

“West Papua must be opened up to the world so the basic human rights including the right to adequate health of Indigenous West Papuan can be promoted. There is a new set of diseases which have never been experienced by remote & isolated highland communities which are continuing to spread into these communities.”

“West Papua should be opened to international health organisations to assist local communities in developing the ability for detection and treatment of disease and to assist in public health generally, including pre and post natal care of mothers and babies.”

“Talk by international countries such as Germany of swapping Indonesia’s international debt in return for implementation of health programs by the Global Fund[1] will be most effective in West Papua if there is increased political freedom.  International attention is necessary so that the critical health services can be rapidly implemented. The indigenous communities must be given the freedom to join in this health reform so they can help themselves. ”

Paula Makabory said, “There is a need for a major rethink about how community health and human rights is addressed in West Papua as the indigenous people do not trust the Indonesia Government. The international community, NGOs and Governments should be encouraging local health projects which are necessary to respond to the health crises in West Papua.’

“If the West Papuan people are not empowered in the field of health, the health of the West Papuan people will continue to deteriorate.”

For further information contact,

Paula Makabory +61 402547517

Dr Anne Noonan +61 2 99601698

Matthew Jamieson +61 418291998

[1] Germany cancels 50 mln euro Indonesian debt (June 23 2008, Thomson Financial)

Matthew Jamieson
Institute for Papuan Advocacy & Human Rights
PO Box 1805, Byron Bay NSW 2481 Australia
tel +61(0) 418291998