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Syiah Kuala University students attacked and injured by Bribob

SiaR - September 5, 1997

[The following is an abridged translation of a statement dated September 2, 1997, by the Department of Education and Culture, Syiah Kuala University Student Senate posted by SiaR. The title was the translator's choice.]

Without warning, Mobile Brigade (Brimob) officers attacked a crowd of students, campus members and the public shortly after watching a football match between Technical and Economic faculty lectures. Lecturers, students and others were kicked, trod on and beaten by soldiers who also used bayonets, resulting in a number of severe injuries.

The violence began after a dispute between a student and a police officer when one of the team's supporters erected a banner. This was followed by a "war of words" between the team's supporters and the officer. Feeling cornered, he tried to hit the student who warded of the blows – which only enraged the officer more. The officer then chased the student while others tried to prevent this.

A police Sargent Yasir, who was also at the field, tackled the student being chased by the Brimob officer which enraged the other supporters. As a result Yasir was hit a number of times.

Brimob troops from more than three trucks then surrounded the field and all of those present were forced to take of their shirts and then beaten and kicked severely.

Some of the students who ran to escape to their lodgings were pursued. This only made the soldiers more angry and each person who was found was kicked, clubbed and even slashed with bayonets. Houses and lodgings near the field were broken into with a number of them being severely damaged.

Even some students who were sleeping and knew nothing about what had happened were severely beaten. A number were thrown against walls and coconut trees. One student was beaten as they were eating. A number were forced into a truck and taken off to an unknown destination.

[Translated by James Balowski]