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Police accuse protesters of treason after call to withdraw TNI from Papua

Solidarity Net - November 1, 2016

Ternate – Police claim that demands raised by the Pro-Democracy Social Movement (Gema Pro-Demkrat) during a rally in Ternate, North Maluku to commemorate Youth Pledge Day on October 28 were an act of treason.

One of the people that attended the protest action, Rudi, said that the Gema Pro-Demkrat rally took up 10 demands. One of them however was deemed to be treason, namely, "Withdraw the TNI [Indonesian military] from the Land of Papua to Indonesia and dissolve the [TNI's] territorial commands".

"[Only] one of them, the police and military made a fuss over the demand about the TNI and our fourth demand. We made this demand because of the many human rights violations such as violence against the Papuan people that are committed either by military or Indonesian police officers", explained Rudi on Monday October 31.

According to the police meanwhile, the demand was treasonous because it was not based on accurate evidence. Because of this therefore, the police will again summon representatives from the group and question them over the evidence behind the group;s demand.

Gema Pro-Demkrat is made up of the Student Struggle Center for National Liberation (Pembebasan), Social Solidarity Action for the Indonesian People (SAMURAI), the Indonesian Student Union (SMI), and the Student Movement for Social Concern (GAMHAS), the Indonesian Student League for Democracy (LMND), Indonesian Student Horizon (CMI) and the educational groups KPRO, PIPS-PKN and the English Students Association (ESA).

Gema Pro-Demkrat took up 10 demands at the rally: Opposing the free market system, opposing the commercialization of education, the repeal of national education system laws 20/2003 and 12/2012, the withdrawal of the TNI from the Land of Papua to Indonesia and disbanding the territorial military commands, that the municipal government form a team to identify and protect water sources in Ternate, an end to criminalisation on campus, providing decent locations for street vendors and providing the broadest possible democracy to the people.

The groups said that if these demands are not met they would continue to consolidate the people to boycott the activities of the Ternate municipal government.

[Translated by James Balowski for the Indoleft News Service. The original title of the report was Aparat Tuding Gema Pro-Demkrat Makar.]

Source: http://www.solidaritas.net/2016/11/aparat-tuding-gema-pro-demkrat-makar.htmls.

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