Tag Archives: Australia

Indonesia/UN/Australia: Indonesia Condemns Statement by UN Experts on Papua Unrest

September 20, 2019

Indonesia has condemned a press statement issued by five independent United Nations Human Rights Council special rapporteurs in which they expressed serious concern over recent development in Papua.

The five rapporteurs also urged the Indonesian government on Tuesday to drop all charges against human rights lawyer Veronika Koman, whom they said had been “subjected to harassment and abuse online for her work on alleged human rights violations in Papua.”

Police have declared Veronika a suspect, accusing her of spreading false information and provoking unrest in Papua and West Papua by publishing reports on the protests and attacks against Papuan students in East Java.

Sporadic unrest in broke out in several cities in Indonesia’s two easternmost provinces after racial animosity by hardline Muslims and members of the police and military against Papuan students in Surabaya, East Java, in August.

The government said false information and provocative content spread on social media, including by Veronika, had contributed to the unrest.

https://jakartaglobe.id/context/indonesia-condemns-statement-by-un-experts-on-papua-unrest

https://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2019/09/18/un-calls-indonesia-protect-veronica-koman.html

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-09-18/veronica-koman-pro-papua-lawyer-may-be-hiding-australia/11516246

https://en.tempo.co/read/1250173/veronica-koman-fugitive-police-issue-red-notice-for-interpol?TerkiniUtama&campaign=TerkiniUtama_Click_1

https://regional.kompas.com/read/2019/09/20/16510971/fakta-terkini-kasus-veronica-koman-resmi-masuk-dpo-hingga-polisi-minta (INDONESIAN)

https://surabaya.kompas.com/read/2019/09/20/12190111/polda-jatim-tetapkan-veronica-koman-sebagai-buronan?page=all (INDONESIAN)

Australia/Timor Leste: Australia: Drop the Collaery prosecution: an interview with Greg Barnes from Australian Lawyers Alliance

September 18, 2019

Sydney Criminal Lawyers

As Australian barrister Bernard Collaery is set to stand trial in the ACT Supreme Court over charges of conspiring to communicate secret information, the Australian Lawyers Alliance (ALA) has stepped forward and called for his prosecution to be dropped.

With the approval of attorney general Christian Porter, the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) laid charges in May 2018 against Collaery and his client, Witness K, over revealing information regarding an ASIS operation that involved the bugging of the Timor Leste government.

Under the cover of an Australian aid refurbishment program, Witness K was charged with bugging the Timor Leste-East Timor cabinet office, so Australia could gain the upper hand in treaty negotiations over oil and gas fields in the Timor Gap.

An ever-broadening reach

As the recent Four Corners investigation explained, while Witness K has decided to plead guilty, Mr Collaery will fight the charges in a trial conducted in partial secrecy, under the provisions of the National Security Information Act 2004 (Cth) (the NSI Act).

Ostensibly designed to prevent prejudicing national security without interfering with the administration of justice, the NSI Act sits amongst a great pile of counterterrorism-national security legislation passed post-9/11, which has gradually whittled away at citizens’ rights.

The ALA has raised concerns about the scope of this legislation, which hasn’t been accompanied by any corresponding rights protections. And the alliance has long warned about the application of the NSI Act, as it leads to a lack of transparency and accountability in proceedings.

http://www.mondaq.com/australia/x/845700/Terrorism+Homeland+Security+Defence/Drop+the+Collaery+Prosecution+An+Interview+With+Australian+Lawyers+Alliances+Greg+Barnes

https://www.lawyersweekly.com.au/biglaw/26403-ala-says-charges-against-act-a-g-must-be-dropped-as-tensions-build

http://honesthistory.net.au/wp/willheim-ernst-the-saga-of-bernard-collaery-and-witness-k-continues/

https://monitor.civicus.org/newsfeed/2019/09/13/authorities-restrict-peaceful-protest-timor-leste/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernard_Collaery

https://www.plataformamedia.com/pt-pt/noticias/politica/interior/a-pedra-no-sapato-com-a-australia-11304796.html (PORTUGUES)

http://www.epochtimes.com/gb/19/9/17/n11528381.htm (CHINESE)

Indonesia/Australia: Australia refuses to rule out handing over Sydney lawyer who advocates for West Papuans to Indonesia

September 17, 2019

West Papuan activist Victor Yeimo and Indonesian lawyer Veronica Koman

The Australian government has refused to rule out handing over a Sydney-based lawyer who advocates for West Papuans to Indonesian authorities.

Veronica Koman, an Indonesian human rights lawyer who currently lives in Australia, is being pursued by Indonesian police for disseminating evidence of police- and military-backed violence in West Papua.

Koman has been a credible source of eyewitness accounts, photos and footage of protests that have swept across West Papua and other Indonesian provinces in recent weeks.

Several people have reportedly died and dozens of others injured in violent clashes with Indonesian police, military and military-backed militia, which were sparked by the racist abuse of Papuan students in Java but have morphed into a demand for a referendum on West Papuan independence.

Koman faces charges under the country’s controversial electronic information and transactions law, and faces up to six years in jail if found guilty.

East Java police spokesman Frans Barung Mangera told the Guardian that if Koman did not report to Indonesian authorities by 18 September, a red notice would be issued through Interpol for her arrest. “After that we will work with the international police,” he said.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/sep/17/australia-refuses-to-rule-out-handing-over-sydney-lawyer-who-advocates-for-west-papuans-to-indonesia

https://www.sbs.com.au/news/australia-does-not-rule-out-handing-over-human-rights-lawyer-to-indonesia

https://www.rnz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/398922/un-urges-indonesia-to-protect-koman

https://www.theaustralian.com.au/world/human-rights-lawyer-veronica-koman-breaks-silence-slams-indonesian-authorities/news-story/a799a0f29fca3fc59bed0983bf8a48ac

https://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2019/09/16/un-human-rights-experts-express-support-for-veronica-koman-in-papua-case.html

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/09/west-papua-unrest-tests-indonesia-jokowi-term-begins-190911060733265.html

UN experts urge Indonesia to protect human rights defender Veronica Koman

https://www.malaysiakini.com/news/492392

https://www.cnnindonesia.com/internasional/20190917135734-134-431227/ahli-pbb-desak-ri-cabut-sangkaan-terhadap-veronica-koman (INDONESIAN)

Indonesia/Australia: Indonesia: Support Letter Ms. Veronica Koman | Joint Letter

September 13, 2019

LRWC and L4L sent a joint letter calling on Indonesian authorities to withdraw criminal charges against human rights lawyer Veronica Koman, charged for disseminating information about police violence against Papuan students peacefully protesting for Papuan self-determination. The letter was sent to the Ministers of Political, Legal and Security Affairs, of Law and Human Rights and of Immigration along with the President and the Police Chief for the East Java region.


The President of the Republic of Indonesia
His Excellency Mr. Ir. Joko Widodo
Jl. Veteran No. 16
Jakarta Pusat
INDONESIA

Amsterdam, 12 September 2019

Subject: Support Letter Ms. Veronica Koman

Your Excellency,

Lawyers for Lawyers (“L4L”) is an independent and non-political Dutch foundation that seeks to promote the proper functioning of the rule of law by pursuing freedom and independence of the legal profession. Lawyers’ Rights Watch Canada (“LRWC”) is a committee of lawyers and others who promote international human rights through advocacy, legal research and education.

L4L and LRWC write to express their concern about the police charges against Ms. Veronica Koman.

Veronica Koman is a prominent, independent human rights lawyer who previously worked as a public interest lawyer at the Legal Aid Institute (LBH) in Jakarta. LBH provides legal aid to the poor and marginalized people in Indonesia. Specifically, Veronica Koman has specialized in defending the rights of international refugees, women & LGBTIQs and West Papuans.

In previous years, Veronica Koman received multiple (death and rape) threats for defending the rights of accused persons in high-profile political cases, among which three legal cases involving Papuan indigenous people who were accused of separatism.

Indonesia: Support Letter Ms. Veronica Koman | Joint Letter

Letter on behalf of Veronica Koman

https://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=24990&LangID=E

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/09/urges-indonesia-protect-rights-west-papua-activists-190916081502990.html

https://www.malaysiakini.com/news/492129

https://www.frontlinedefenders.org/en/case/threats-against-and-judicial-harassment-human-rights-lawyer-veronica-koman

https://en.tempo.co/read/1246104/police-issue-second-summons-letter-for-veronica-koman

https://en.tempo.co/read/1247511/police-trace-suspicious-transactions-in-veronica-komans-accounts

https://www.rnz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/398897/increase-noted-in-intimidation-of-legal-advocates-for-papuans

https://regional.kompas.com/read/2019/09/15/13392941/fakta-baru-kasus-veronica-koman-polisi-temukan-6-rekening-hingga-bantah?page=all (INDONESIAN)

https://www.cnnindonesia.com/nasional/20190914105624-20-430447/lsm-asing-surati-jokowi-setop-kasus-veronica-koman (INDONESIAN)

Indonesia/Australia: Outcry as Indonesia seeks to arrest renowned West Papua rights lawyer

September 5, 2019

Veronica Koman faces charges after being accused of spreading ‘fake news’ and inciting unrest

Indonesian police have named human rights lawyer and well-known West Papua advocate Veronica Koman as a suspect in the spreading of “fake news”, accusing her of provoking widespread unrest in Indonesia’s easternmost provinces.

In a move slammed by Amnesty International Indonesia, the human rights lawyer faces charges under the country’s controversial electronic information and transactions law, and faces up to six years in jail if found guilty.

Police specifically mentioned Koman’s posts about an incident in Surabaya in mid-August where military and nationalist militia were captured on video calling Papuan students “monkeys” and “dogs”.

East Java police said the lawyer had provoked and inflamed anti-racist riots that have swept across West Papua in recent weeks, and accused of her spreading fake news and provocative material.

Indonesian police say they have also contacted Interpol to seek assistance in locating the Indonesian lawyer, who they believe is abroad.

Indonesia’s National Commission of Human Rights slammed the move, saying Koman had attempted only to provide “necessary information from a different point of view”.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/sep/05/outcry-as-indonesia-seeks-to-arrest-renowned-west-papua-rights-lawyer

https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2019/09/05/asia-pacific/social-issues-asia-pacific/indonesian-human-rights-lawyer-accused-inciting-violent-papua-protests-spreading-provocative-news/

https://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2019/09/05/police-charge-papua-activist-govt-mulls-ending-blackout.html

Indonesian police target Veronica Koman for West Papua ‘incitement’

https://www.tribunnews.com/regional/2019/09/05/berita-terkini-papua-blokir-internet-dicabut-hingga-sosok-veronica-koman-yang-jadi-tersangka (INDONESIAN)

https://www.cnnindonesia.com/nasional/20190904161048-12-427500/safenet-polisi-tak-tepat-tetapkan-veronica-koman-tersangka (INDONESIAN)

https://news.solopos.com/read/20190905/496/1016638/amnesty-international-usut-pelaku-rasisme-bukan-twitter-veronica-koman (INDONESIAN)

https://www.suara.com/news/2019/09/05/073000/veronica-koman-jadi-tersangka-amnesty-international-minta-kasusnya-dicabut (INDONESIAN)

Indonesia/Australia: Jakarta sets Interpol after Australia-based human rights lawyer

September 5, 2019

Papua lawyer Veronica Koman. Picture: Supplied

Indonesian police have asked ­Interpol to help track down an ­Indonesian human rights lawyer — understood to be living in Australia — who is facing charges of having “incited” recent violent protests across West Papua.

 

East Java police on Wednesday booked VK, believed to be lawyer Veronica Koman, as a suspect for incitement following riots in East Java, Papua and West Papua since August 18.

Police say they have sufficient evidence taken from her Twitter account and statements from people in Papua confirming that she was very active in relaying ­information related to Papua. “We first called VK in as a ­suspect but she didn’t show up. We believe she is abroad so we will work with the national intelligence agency and Interpol to ­appre­hend her,” East Java police chief Luki Hermawan said in ­Surabaya.

Ms Koman was not physically in Papua during the riots but “proactively provoked the public” through her Twitter account, a police spokesman said.

Police referred to her August 18 tweet calling out “monkeys to fill the streets of Jayapura” after an incident the day before saw Papuan students in Surabaya verbally abused by civilians.

Ms Koman would be the third suspect booked for inciting violence after police questioned two others for allegedly hurling racial abuse and intimidating a group of Papuan students at a dormitory in Surabaya, East Java.

The Legal Aid Institute in Jakarta has strongly “condemned” this latest move by the police.

https://www.theaustralian.com.au/nation/jakarta-sets-interpol-after-australiabased-human-rights-lawyer/news-story/c132f6bd8de93a0b9de38964d944bbd7

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/09/indonesia-police-suspect-west-papua-unrest-190904063940855.html

https://www.devdiscourse.com/article/law-order/657774-indonesian-rights-lawyer-named-suspect-after-sharing-posts-on-papua

https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2019/sep/4/indonesian-human-rights-lawyer-accused-of-inciting/

https://en.tempo.co/read/1243832/komnas-ham-slams-polices-suspect-naming-of-human-rights-lawyer

https://www.euronews.com/2019/09/04/indonesian-rights-lawyer-named-suspect-after-sharing-posts-on-papua

https://news.detik.com/berita/d-4693989/deretan-fakta-veronica-koman-yang-jadi-tersangka-provokasi-papua (INDONESIAN)

https://www.cnnindonesia.com/nasional/20190904161048-12-427500/safenet-polisi-tak-tepat-tetapkan-veronica-koman-tersangka (INDONESIAN)

https://www.suara.com/news/2019/09/05/071000/penetapan-tersangka-veronica-koman-dan-4-berita-kerusuhan-papua-lainnya (INDONESIAN)

https://halloindo.com/antara-news/2019/09/04/amnesty-akar-masalah-tindakan-rasial-aparat-bukan-veronica-koman (INDONESIAN)

Australia/Timor Leste: Jose Ramos-Horta urges Australia to drop Witness K, whistleblower charges

August 30, 2019

Timor-Leste had moved on since the spying scandal and so should Australia by dropping charges against the whistleblowers who exposed it, says Jose Ramos Horta.

Lawyer Bernard Collaery addresses the media outside the Supreme Court in Canberra earlier this month.

Timor-Leste’s Nobel Peace Prize-winning former Prime Minister Jose Ramos-Horta says Australia “should get over it” and drop charges against two whistleblowers who revealed covert spying.

The criminal charges relate to whistleblowers lawyer Bernard Collaery and former spy Witness K revealing in 2013 that Australia had bugged government offices during negotiations over the sea boundary.

It was seen around the world as a rich nation stealing from an impoverished one.

Mr Ramos-Horta, who will on Friday attend Timor-Leste’s 20th-anniversary celebrations of its vote for independence, compared the Australian government’s pursuit of the pair to the novel Les Miserables and Inspector Javert’s obsessive pursuit of the convict Jean Valjean.

“I would never as leader of a country prosecute someone if we spied on some country and they came to us or the media and said I have just been asked to do something that is completely unethical and has nothing to do with the national interest,” he said.

“I would apologise to the nation if I were leader, apologise to the gentleman, the spy.”

Mr Ramos-Horta was shot at his home in Dili in an assassination attempt in 2008.

The scandal began in 2004 when the Australian Secret Intelligence Service planted covert listening devices in the Timor-Leste cabinet office to gain an upper hand in negotiations over the rich Greater Sunrise oil and gas fields.

 

https://www.sbs.com.au/news/jose-ramos-horta-urges-australia-to-drop-witness-k-whistleblower-charges

https://www.dailyliberal.com.au/story/6357083/drop-timor-whistleblower-charge-horta/

https://www.miragenews.com/ala-calls-for-collaery-prosecution-to-be-dropped/

https://www.lawyersalliance.com.au/news/ala-calls-for-collaery-prosecution-to-be-dropped

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/aug/29/witness-k-lawyer-alleges-extraordinary-unexplained-roadblock-funding-case

https://7news.com.au/politics/morrison-to-help-east-timor-celebrate-c-424992

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/08/australian-spy-denied-legal-aid-east-timor-bugging-case-190829061353911.html

https://www.abc.net.au/radio/programs/am/witness-k-controversy-could-affect-timor-leste-gas-deal:-patrick/11463842

http://www.mondaq.com/australia/x/840952/Human+Rights/Protect+our+eroding+rights+An+interview+with+Human+Rights+Law+Centres+campaign+director+Tom+Clarke

https://www.smh.com.au/world/asia/pm-bats-aside-questions-over-prosecution-of-witness-k-and-lawyer-20190830-p52mjj.html

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/sep/01/suppression-and-secrecy-how-australias-government-put-a-boot-on-journalisms-throat

https://www.euronews.com/2019/08/31/thousands-celebrate-east-timors-20th-anniversary-but-the-scars-remain

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernard_Collaery

https://mapdow.com/des-milliers-celebrer-le-20e-anniversaire-du-timor-oriental-mais-les-cicatrices-restent/ (FRANCAIS)

http://www.dailyviewsonline.com/cultura/Australiano-spia-di-carica-con-intercettazioni-perdita-negato-il-patrocinio-h20452.html (ITALIANO)