Nabire, Jubi – Mass organisation crowd attacked Papuan students in demonstration rejecting the Special Autonomy Papua Phase II in Makassar, South Sulawesi on Friday (25/9/2020). Some were throwing stones towards the protesters, while others pushed and beat the students with a helmet.
Participated in the demonstration were students from Papua who are currently studying in Makassar, including activists from Forum Solidaritas Peduli Rakyat Papua (FSP-RP).
FSP-RP spokesperson Antonious Boma said the students gathered at the Student Dormitory Kamasan Cenderawasih IV Makassar in Jalan Lanto Daeng Pasewang. They were about to go to Monuman Mandala, Makassar, for a rally rejecting the continuation of Otsus Papua policy.
“The peace rally participants started to gather at Papuan Student Dormitory at 7:10 a.m local time. Shortly, some strangers and police officers wearing casual clothes were already in front of the dorm at 8:30 a.m. Then some other police and Brimob officers joined them at 9:30 a.m. When we started to walk from the dorm, they blocked us. Five casual clothes officers closed the dormitory gate,” told Boma when contacted by Jubi on Friday.
The students were finally able to escape from the dorm at around 9:45 a.m, but those strangers threw stones behind them. As a result, a student was hit by stones.
“Around 9:55 a.m, a member of the mass organisation blocked us. Many strangers shouted ‘NKRI Harga mati (the unitary of the Republic of Indonesia is undisputed)’. They started to attack us from all sides that forced us to back off and split into two groups,” he said.
In the meantime, FSP-RP Mass Coordinator Macho Pahabol, who tried to concentrate the protestors, was beaten with a helmet that wounded his right temple and bleeds. “Then, we pushed each other. Our group finally united, but we still had to face them,” said Boma.
In the meantime, some students reportedly were injured in this incident. Boas Payage and Aplahesa Kanigga got swelling on their right hands because of stone-throwing; Antonious Boma and Petrus Badi respectively wounded on the right hand and the next because of beating.
“The police at first seemed to let the crowd in action until two female protesters got harassed. After being pushed and beaten with a helmet by the crowd of mass organisation, the police and Brimob officers come to intervene. We then went back to the dorm,” said Boma.
The protesters finally gave speeches in the front yard of the dorm. In his oration, Macho Pahabol stated the students reject the central government’s plan to implement the Special Autonomy Phase II. [We] refuse all forms of unilateral economic decisions as well as other agendas and discussions that do not involve Papuans as the subject of the entire problems and concerns of Papua,” said Pahabol.
Furthermore, he asked for a referendum to let Papuan people choose and determine their call, whether they accept the Special Autonomy Phase II, or establish a sovereign state. “We support 1.8 million Papuans who signed the Petition of Papuan People in 2017. [We ask] the international supervision in Self-determination through a referendum in West Papua,” said Pahabol. The students ended their protest at 10:40 a.m local time.
Regarding this incident, Antonius Boma said the oppression against the protester had been happening since Thursday evening (24/9/2020) when three intelligent police officers came to the dorm. Those officers asked the students to cancel their planned rally on Friday due to the security situation and Covid-19. “Finally, we made a deal that the rally participants would obey the health protocol of Covid-19,” said Boma telling their negotiation on Thursday evening with those police officers. (*)
Reporter: Aryo W
Editor: Pipit Maizier