Papuan students protesting against the G20 summit in Jayapura and Bali face torture, ill-treatment, and intimidation

Papuan students in Jayapura and Bali carried out peaceful demonstrations against the G20 summit, which Indonesia hosted on the island of Gods on 15 and 16 November 2022. Members of nationalist groups attacked members of the Papuan Student Alliance (AMP) as they wanted to leave their dormitory to protest against the international event peacefully. Six students suffered injuries after being attacked with stones and bamboo sticks.

Likewise, student protests at the Cenderawasih University (UNCEN) and Jayapura University of Sciences and Technology (USTJ) in Jayapura were forcefully dispersed by members of the local police. Sixteen students sustained injuries as the police cracked down on the protesters in Jayapura. Seven students were arrested and temporarily detained at the Jayapura City Police station

Denpasar City, Bali

On 16 November 2022, a group of Papuan students was prevented from walking to the gathering at 9.30 pm. The students wanted to walk from Tukad Yeh Aya Street to the American Consulate. Dozens of members of a nationalist group accompanied by traditional security guards (Bhs Indonesia Pecalang) and representatives of the village government had gathered in front of the Papuan student dormitory in the Renon area, Denpasar City. According to information received, members of the nationalist groups began throwing stones and beating Papuan students with bamboo sticks and glass bottles (see video below, source: AMP). Some reportedly shot stones at the students using a slingshot. A megaphone and banners which the students had prepared were damaged. 

Following the attack, the Papuan students retreated into the dormitory. Around 11.00 am, they read aloud a statement rejecting the G20 summit and demanding the Papuan people’s right to self-determination. Police officers closely monitored the road in front of the student dormitory until late afternoon (see photo on top, source: AMP).  

Table with students injured during the protest

NoNameAdditional information
1HeryWas hit by a stone thrown at him
2BolikamSustained a bleeding injury on the ear
3YabesSustained a bruise on the stomach after being hit by a stone
4LeksiSustained bruises on the stomach after being punched with knuckles
5AndreSustained bruises on the temple after being beaten with a bamboo stick
6WemmySustained bleeding injury on the lips

Members of nationalist groups attack Papuan students in Denpasar, Bali

Papuan students injured during incident in Bali

Jayapura

On 16 November 2022, hundreds of students followed the call by the Executive Student Body (BEM) and held peaceful demonstrations against the G20 summit at the Cenderawasih University campuses in Abepura, Wanea as well as the USTJ Campus. Around 11.00 am, the police dispersed the peaceful protests with water cannons and tear gas. Police officers fully equipped with rubber batons and shields attacked students and arrested seven student leaders at the UNCEN campus in Abepura, namely Mr Gerson Pigay, Mr Yabet Degey, Mr Habel Fauwok, Mr Kamus Asso, Mr Ayus Heluka, Mr Meynas Heluka and Mr Lukas Gane.

The police have launched investigations against Mr Gerson Pigai and Mr Kamus Bayage, alleging them of incitement as regulated under Article 160 of the Indonesian Criminal Code (KUHP) and violence against police officers as stipulated in Article 212 KUHP carrying a maximum penalty of 5 years imprisonment. They received legal support by the Papuan Legal Aid Institute (LBH Papua) and remained in custody as of 26 November 2022. Five arrested students were released from detention.

LBH Papua condemned the police violence and excessive force used during the crowd control operation against the students. The BEM and LBH Papua stressed that the protest had been registered on 14 November 2002 as required under national law. They underlined that the police have the obligation to respect and protect the freedom of peaceful assembly and association as guaranteed under the Indonesian constitution and international human rights law.

The Jayapura City police chief, Commissioner Victor Dean Mackbon, claimed his men dispersed the protest because the students had left the university campus and allegedly attacked the police officers. According to Mackbon, 1,000 police personnel had been deployed to eight different locations in Jayapura to secure the protest.

Table with protesters ill-treated during the demonstration at Uncen Jayapura

NoNameAdditional information
1Namun PayageWas beaten with a rubber baton, his leg was directly exposed to tear gas
2Miron KogoyaWas beaten with a rubber baton on the temple and the chest, sustained bleeding cut on the eyebrow
3Yohanes GobayWas punched on the shoulder
4Dere AdiWas beaten to the knee
5Mikael FunanggiWas punched to the ribs
6Yali Benal DaplaWas punched on the chest
7Riko YeimoWas beaten with a rubber baton on the head
8Janet WandikboFemale, was beaten with a rubber baton on the lower back
9Nosias Pigaywas beaten with a rubber baton on the lower back
10Amenas HelukaWas beaten with a rifle butt to the head
11Venus KabakFemale, was beaten with a rifle butt on the stomach
12Rikison KogoyaWas beaten with a rubber baton on the head, lower back, and the left temple
13Elia GobayWas punched on the back
14Depanus SiepSustained a bruised left hand after being beaten
15Yerius YandoWas beaten on the head, left thigh and fainted after being directly exposed to tear gas
16Yan KeyaWas hit by a water canon from a distance of 1 meter and fell down

Police cracks down on perotesters at Cenderawasih Untiversity Campus

Protest against G20 summit at Cenderawasih University