Military members accused of raping woman in Jayapura

Two military members reportedly raped a woman inside a hotel in Jayapura, Papua Province. The soldiers had consumed alcohol with the victim and then lured her to a hotel. The spokesperson of the XVII/Cenderawasih military command, Kolonel Inf Aqsha Erlangga, declared in an interview with media outlet CNN Indonesia, that the suspects had been arrested by the military police on 20 December 2021 and taken into custody. The investigators are currently examining witnesses, said Erlangga on 31 December 2021.

Indonesia’s criminal justice system stipulates, that military personnel can only be tried in military courts, even for criminal offences relating to human rights violations. The military court mechanism is characterized by lack of transparency from the investigation process to the prosecution stage, light sentences compared with the gravity of the crimes, implicating low-rank personnel while excluding the responsible command, and the conviction not being used as a vetting policy. Case studies in West Papua illustrate that the sentences in military trials do not consider the victims’ right to restitution and rehabilitation.