At least 19 victims killed, and one forcefully disappeared in West Papua in 2022

The ongoing conflict in Papua has resulted in numerous human rights violations, including extrajudicial killings, torture, and arbitrary arrests. Over the past years, there have been several reports of such abuses and Human Rights Monitor (HRM) has compiled a list of victims of enforced disappearance and extra-judicial killings between January and December 2022. The chronology of events and witness testimonies allege that Indonesian police or military members committed these crimes. All but one of the 19 victims are indigenous Papuans and three of them are minors. This reflects the continuing pattern of state violence, violations of the right to life and the persistent racial discrimination that indigenous Papuans face in Indonesia. Most cases have not been followed up through independent investigations and the prosecution of perpetrators in transparent and public trials.

It is essential that the Indonesian government takes immediate action to investigate these incidents, hold those responsible accountable, and work towards a just and peaceful resolution of the conflict in Papua.

In memory of the victims and in solidarity with their families, who continue to seek justice, the Human Rights Monitor has compiled the following section with short case narratives of all reported cases of extra-judicial killings and enforced disappearances in West Papua throughout 2022:

  • Pastor Elisa Kalakmabin has been missing since 12 January 2022. He was arbitrarily arrested and detained at the Police Mobile Brigade (Brimob) post in the Serambakon District, Pegunungan Bintang Regency, on 12 January. A witness claims that he heard multiple gunshots coming from the post while the police claim he escaped from the post and have not provided any further information since then.
  • Security forces tortured 13-year-old child Makilon Tabuni and four other minors in the Sinak District, Puncak Regency, on 22 February 2022. Makilon died on 24 February due to the injuries sustained. 
  • Mr Yakob Meklok, 39, and Mr Erson Weipsa, 18, were killed by the police on 15 March 2022 during a protest that escalated into unrest in Dekai, Yakuhimo Regency. The police opened fire indiscriminately at the crowd injuring at least ten protestors. 
  • Security forces executed 17-year-old Mr Paranus Lokbere while he was sitting outside his house in the Nogolaid Village in Kenyam District, Nduga Regency, during a raid on 5 April 2022. The raids in Kenyam took place in response to a TPNPB attack. 
  • Military personnel of the Quari Atas Yonif R 431/SSP military post in the Kenyam District, Nduga Regency tortured 40-year-old high school teacher, Mr Musa Nawipa, on 27 April 2022. He was tortured inside the post for one day and died due to his injuries on 28 April.  
  • In the early morning of 4 May 2022, a police officer in a police car ran over four road workers in the city of Jayapura, Papua Province. One of them, Mr Alwi was killed in the crash. The other three victims, all indigenous Papuans, were injured.
  • On 4 June 2022, a Sergeant member of the XVIII/Kasuari Military Command shot dead 16-year-old civilian Rafael Ivan Balaweling in the Prafi District, Manokwari Regency, during a wedding ceremony in the Aimasi village. The shooting was triggered by an argument between the two of them.
  • Mr Donatus Nawipa was killed during a crowd control operation in Enarotali, Panaiai Regency, on 5 July 2022. Police officers dispersed civil unrest using live ammunition and tear gas.  
  • On 5 July 2022, the Damai Cartenz Unit security forces shot dead Mr Uakhele Giban in the Suru Suru District, Yahukimo Regency. He was one of the thousands of internally displaced persons in the district. He was living in a temporary shelter with his family since November 2021.
  • Military and civilian perpetrators killed and mutilated four indigenous Papuans in Timika on 22 August 2022. The victims were 38-year-old Mr Irian Nirigi, 29-year-old Mr Arnold Lokbere and Mr Limaniol Nirigi, and 23-year-old Mr Atis Tini.
  • On 30 August 2022, military personnel tortured Mr Bruno Anonim Kimko and another Papuan man inside a military post in Bade Village, Edera District, Mappi Regency. Mr Kimko died shortly after due to his injuries. 
  • Security forces of the Damai Cartenz Unit shot dead Mr Yahia Tepmul in the Pelebib Village, Kiwirok District on 27 October 2022. A sniper allegedly shot him at 6:45 am near a spring, where he was looking for his pig. 
  • On 12 November 2022, police cracked down on civil unrest in the Dogiyai Regency, Papua Province. Mr Felek Pigai was shot dead by police officers, while six others – all indigenous Papuans – were reportedly injured by bullets during the crackdown.
  • On 14 December 2022, security forces opened fire at a crowd of indigenous Papuans throwing stones towards the Military Special Forces (Kopassus) Post in Kepi, Obaa District, Mappi Regency, as they passed by. At least nine persons were injured, including two minors. Mr Moses Nakas Erro, 32, died due to bullet injuries.
  • Mr Wilem Wunungga died due to a bullet wound when officers of the Tolikaras District Police opened fire at a group of Papuans who were allegedly trying to attack the police headquarters in Ampera, Karubaga town, Tolkara Regency on 19 December 2022. Three more people were injured by bullets.