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KNPD activist mistreated, workers and KNPD lodge complaint

INFO KNPD - September 26, 1997

Yesterday morning, September 25, 30 activists from the National Committee for Democratic Struggle (Komite Nasional Perjuangan Demokrasi, KNPD) and workers from PT. Sindol and Mega Beta Pratama loged a complaint because of military mistreatment against them which occurred at an action on September 23. As we have already reported, 1,300 workers from the two factories held an demonstration at the national parliament building. Not one of those who call themselves the peoples' representatives responded to the demonstration. Instead, workers and KNPD activists were violently attacked by the military. 11 were arrested after being thrown to the ground, beaten and kicked. After being held for more than 24 hours, yesterday afternoon they were released.

One of the participants, Alex (a Manado KNPD activist), was struck and thrown to the ground, his eye and mouth bruised and fresh blood gushing from his hear. When the police arrived, Alex and his friends were still receiving physical violence from the interrogator. As a result of this harsh treatment, Alex had to be taken to the Cikini hospital in Central Jakarta. Alex is presently getting a doctors report accompanied by lawyers from the Indonesian Legal Aid Foundation to take the case to court.

These violent actions were also reported to the National Human Rights Commission. However the plaintiffs are still not satisfied because many previous complaints have not been acted upon.

We therefore call on all of those committed to the democratic struggle in Indonesia to give support and solidarity to the workers of the two factories, Alex and the KNPD.

[Translated by James Balowski]