Nur Hadi, Surabaya – Scores of police were deployed to secure a discussion and screening of the film "The First Grader" organised by the Papuan Student Alliance (AMP) in Surabaya.
The event was held at the Papuan Kamasan III Dormitory on Jl. Kalasan in the East Java provincial capital of Surabaya on the evening of Tuesday March 27.
Tambaksari sectoral police chief Commissioner Prayitno said that the tight security was necessary because there were indications that the film was about black skinned people (kulit hitam).
"It was in anticipation of the Papuan people's ideology", said Priyatno when contacted by Tempo on Tuesday evening.In addition to this, according to Prayitno, they believed that that the film is in conflict with Indonesian culture and the culture of the nation and state.
"The film conflicts with our culture, the national culture and the state", said Prayitno. Nevertheless, police eventually allowed the event to go ahead.
Prayitno added that based on an agreement between police and the organising committee, the discussion and screening of the film about an elderly person who wanted to get an education went ahead at 8am, two hours later than scheduled.
Prayitno said that around 40 officers were deployed to the location in North Surabaya, who have been guarding the screening since late afternoon. "They failed to notify us beforehand about the event", he said.
[Translated by James Balowski for the Indoleft News Service. The original title of the article was "Pemutaran Film Mahasiswa Papua di Surabaya Dijaga Polisi".]