The deadly cost of poor policing
International Crisis Group
Media Release - February 16, 2012
Jakarta/Brussels – Despite years
of investment in community policing, the Indonesian police remain deeply
distrusted by the people they are supposed to serve.
The Deadly Cost of Poor Policing, the latest report from the International
Crisis Group, says that the high frequency of angry crowd attacks on police
and police stations is a direct response to abuse, real and perceived,
by police and the absence of any functioning grievance mechanism.
"The cure is not more pilot
projects in community policing but systematic reform in recruitment and
training, use of force and handling of firearms, and above all, accountability",
says Achmad Sukarsono, Crisis Group's South East Asia Analyst. "Police
are supposed to be helping prevent conflict, but too often they are contributing
to its outbreak".
The report looks at how the
concept of community policing evolved in democratic Indonesia and the obstacles
it faces from police institutional culture, incentive structure and corruption.
Out of at least 40 attacks on police since August 2010, the report examines
"These incidents are emblematic
of a much broader problem; the Indonesian government should stop treating
them as isolated incidents", says Jim Della-Giacoma, Crisis Group's South
East Asia Project Director. "They represent a systemic failure that will
encourage further deadly violence unless the underlying causes of community
hostility are addressed".
In Buol, Central Sulawesi, citizens
destroyed police facilities and forced police families to leave town after
seven men were shot dead during a mass protest against the death of a teenager
in police custody. This is one of the few cases where several of the officers
were brought to court, but only because of the high death toll and media
In Kampar, Riau, residents vandalised
a precinct after the arrest and beating of an innocent clan elder at a
market. He was accused of illegal gambling because he was jotting numbers
on a piece of paper, when in fact he was noting product prices. Trivial
arrests like this frequently occur because police are rewarded for favourable
crime statistics, and the more arrests they make, regardless of the severity
of the crime, the better they are seen to be doing their job.
In Bantaeng, South Sulawesi,
villagers attacked a precinct after a deadly police raid on alleged gamblers
at a wedding party that killed one, although it happened in a different
district. Police claim they opened fire because they believed anger among
the wedding guests over the gambling arrests put their commander's life
in danger. In fact, they seem to have shot wildly in the dark without being
able to see what they were shooting at.
services on Indonesia
& videos on Indonesia
& articles on Indonesia
& press releases on Indonesia
| Site Map |
Calendar & Events
Links & Resources
| Contact Us