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Student killed in violent crushing of Papuan independence rally, says advocate

Indonesian forces in Jayapura

Indonesian troops prepare for the crackdown against Papuans taking part in the Third Papuan People's Congress. Photo: West Papua Media

Pacific Scoop:
Report – By Banjir Ambarita in Jayapura

A university student died in the chaos following the violent crackdown on the Third Papua People’s Congress by Indonesian security forces on Wednesday.

The student, named as Melkias Kadepa, was found dead at a plantation behind the 172 PWY Military Resort Command (Korem) in Abepura yesterday.

Deputy chairman of Papua’s branch of the National Commission on Human Rights, Matius Murib, confirmed the death.

“To make sure the cause of death was from a gunshot, the victim is undergoing an autopsy,” Matius said.

Dozens were wounded after state security forces beat protesters with rattan canes, batons and the butts of assault riffles. An earlier report citing human rights sources said two people had been killed, the other being a Papuan security guard.

“Many sustained injuries from beatings and locals had to evacuate their homes. The government, in this case, the president of the Republic of Indonesia has to open a peaceful dialogue with the people
of Papua,” he said.

‘Illegal acts’
Meanwhile, Papua Police spokesperson, Senior Commander Wachyono, said the police had named suspects who took part in the People’s Congress where a group of Papuan leaders declared independence and raised the Morning Star independence flag – both illegal acts.

“We have named five suspects and we will charge them with Articles 106, 110 and 160 of the Criminal Code,” he said.

Articles 106 and 110 address attempted coup d’etat and evil plots with the purpose to separate from the country, each carries a maximum punishment of 15 years to 20 years in jail. Article 160 concerns
inciting people to commit crimes. This article carries a maximum punishment of six years.

The suspects are Forkorus Yoboisembut, the Papuan Customary Council chairman, who proclaimed himself president of a ‘free Papua’ and Edison Waromi, the prime minister. The other suspects are their
accomplices, August Makbrawen, Sanany Kraar and Dominikus Sorabut.

“We also confiscated some evidence such as documents and sharp weapons,” Wachyono said.

Source: Jakarta Globe

Two deaths, other casualties in West Papua crackdown