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Re: Free West Papua – ONLINE PETITION

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from amnesty international:

Filep Karma (m) and Yusak Pakage (m) could face life imprisonment for their
participation in a peaceful flag-raising ceremony in Abepura, Papua province on
1 December 2004. They are currently on trial in Jayapura on charges of
rebellion under Articles 106 and 110 of the Indonesian Criminal Code (KUHP) which
carries a possible life sentence.
They are also charged under Article 154 KUHP
with expressing hostility or hatred towards the state, the maximum penalty for
which is seven years. Amnesty International considers them to be prisoners of
conscience who have been detained purely for the peaceful and legitimate
exercise of their right to freedom of expression and is calling for their immediate
and unconditional release.

On 1 December 2004 a peaceful ceremony was held in Trikora field outside
Abepura in Papua and the Morning Star flag, a symbol of Papuan independence, was
raised in commemoration of the declaration of Papuan independence in 1962. The
commemoration is celebrated annually by some Papuans. Approximately 200 people
took part in the ceremony, and hundreds more local people watched from the
edge of the fields.

When the flag was raised, police advanced on the crowd, firing warning shots
and beating people with batons. At least four people were reportedly injured
by bullets fired by the police, including two people receiving bullet wounds to
the head, and at least one student had her body stepped on by members of the
police forces.

Police also beat a human rights monitor from the Institute for Human Rights
Study and Advocacy (ELSHAM), who was trying to photograph the police attack on
the crowd.

However, the police were outnumbered by the crowd and were forced to retreat
until riot police reinforcements arrived. They were then able to force an end
to the ceremony.

Filep Karma was arrested at the site of the ceremony. He was reportedly
beaten, and stepped on by police officers during transportation to the police
station. A group of about twenty people were later arrested at the police station
when they went to protest over Filep Karma’s arrest. This group was
subsequently released, except for Yusak Pakage, who remained in detention with Filep
Karma. The two men were later charged with rebellion for their role in leading and
organising the event.

Filep Karma and Yusak Pakage have staged hunger strikes during their
detention, to protest over their ill-treatment, and over the legality of the charges
against them.

AI index: ASA 21/004/2005
Date: 1 February 2005
Indonesia: Prisoners of Conscience Action 2005
Case sheet: The Jayapura Flag-raisers

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