Military violence against children in Papua increases

Military Violence
Head of Representative of Komnas HAM Papua, Frits Ramandey. - Jubi/Theo Kelen

Jayapura, Jubi – Head of the Papua Office of the National Human Rights Commission (Komnas HAM Papua) Frits Ramandey said violence against children allegedly committed by Indonesian Military (TNI) soldiers in Papua increased throughout 2022. He said it was a bad precedent and had the potential to disrupt efforts to fulfill and protect children’s rights.

Komnas HAM Papua recorded three cases of alleged military violence against children in Papua that occurred in 2022. There were at least 11 victims, with as many as nine children injured and two children died.

“It was direct violence. Not because of the consequences or impact of ordinary events but direct violence against children,” Ramandey told reporters in Jayapura City on Saturday, December 12, 2022.

Ramandey said one of the cases was the case of violence against seven children in Puncak Regency, which was allegedly committed by members of the 521 Infantry Battalion of the Brawijaya Military Regional Command who were assigned to secure PT Modern Post in Sinak Village. The violence that occurred on February 23-24 killed one child and injured six other children.

Another case is the Mimika murder and mutilation on August 22, 2022, allegedly involving six soldiers of the Raider 20/IJK/3 Infantry Brigade. In this case, four civilians were murdered, one of which was a child.

In addition, Special Forces Command soldiers allegedly committed violence against three children in Yuwanain Village, Arso District, Keerom Regency. As a result, the three children were seriously injured, and one of them was declared critical.

Ramandey appealed to the TNI to stop violence against children in Papua. Komnas HAM Papua invited them to use a cultural approach of dialogue to resolve conflicts in Papua. “We must have a joint commitment to resolve cases of violence through a dialogue,” he said. (*)

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