Heavy police presence during pre-trial against the Mimika district police chief - two KNPB activists allegedly ill-treated

The West Papua National Committee (KNPB) has initiated pre-trial against the against Mimika Resort Police Chiefs to examine the legality of a police operation at the KNPB Branch office in Timika on the 31 December 2018. Since the first court session on 11 February 2019, the pre-trial is secured by a disproportionate large number of fully armed police officers and armored vehicles. The lawyers of KNPB understood this act as an act of intimidation against themselves, the judges and KNPB supporters who want to attend the pre-trial hearings.  



On 13 February, the police officers allegedly ill-treated two KNPB activists who wanted to attend the pre-trial. Police officers forced Soon Tabuni to take off his shirt, open his trouser and cut off two bracelet and a necklace as he wanted to enter the court room. Another KNPB supporter named Pit Gobay was allegedly beaten by police officers when he wanted to attend the pre-trial  hearing on February 14, 2019 (see into image).

Joint security forces raided the KNPB office in Timika and arrested the six KNPB activists Mr. Ruben Kogoya, Ms. Johanna Songgonau, Mr. Elius Wenda, Mr. Edo Dogopia, dan Mr. Vincent Gobay and local KNPB chairman Yanto Awerkion (30 years). Mr. Yanto Awerkion, Mr. Ruben Kogoya, and Ms. Johanna Songgonau were allegedly beaten during the arrest.

On 7 January 2019, Mr. Yanto Awerkion, Mr. Sem Asso, and Mr. Edo Dogopia were called for further questioning. The three activists were then arrested and transferred to the city of Jayapura on 8 January 2019, where they were charged with treason and remain in detention awaiting trial. TAPOL, Franciscans International, International Coalition for Papua, Watch Indonesia!, West Papua Netzwerk and Geneva for Human Rights Global Training have launched an Urgent Action Appeal in response to the unlawful arrests and criminalisation.