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Indonesian prosecutors accused of defying court order for Victor Yeimo

Radio New Zealand - August 30, 2021

Indonesian authorities have been accused of defying a court order to urgently hospitalise the West Papuan political prisoner Victor Yeimo.

Last week the District Court of Jayapura issued an order to hospitalise Yeimo, a leader of the pro-independence West Papua National Committee (KNPB), as a matter of utmost urgency.

His lawyers say prosecutors have been deliberately defying the court order and that Yeimo is still isolated in detention with a serious medical condition and could soon die without treatment.

Yeimo is charged with treason and incitement over his alleged role in anti-racism protests that turned into riots in 2019, and has been held by paramilitary police since his arrest in May.

When his trial began last week, Yeimo pleaded for help from the district court judges, saying he was very sick, had lost weight and had been denied direct access to medicines.

If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of life in prison.

For months, international human rights groups have demanded Yeimo's release, saying he was being targetted for his political views. The groups raised concern about his health, with particular concern about his susceptability to Covid-19 of which transmission is widespread in Indonesia.

After around three months of being detained, Indonesian authorities allowed Yeimo to have a medical check-up.

His international lawyer, Veronica Koman said that at his last perfunctory medical check-up on Friday, he begged to stay at the hospital, but was dragged out by armed paramilitary police while receiving intravenous treatment.

She said the prosecutors handed a medical report dated 20 August to Yeimo's legal team last Thursday – the report is understood to have relayed a doctor's advice that Yeimo should be urgently hospitalised.

"It means that the prosecutors have been keeping this crucial information from us for a week," Koman said, adding that the denial of Yeimo's right to adequate medical treatment, and his isolation in prison, amounted to torture.

"Yeimo's condition is so bad that he can die anytime now. The state knows this and is attempting to assassinate him by denying medical treatment," she said.

"We are at a point where even a court order is not working. This means that local remedies for Victor Yeimo have been exhausted, thus international intervention is justified and necessary."

Source: https://www.rnz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/450353/indonesian-prosecutors-accused-of-defying-court-order-for-victor-yeim