The execution of the Tanjung Priok ad hoc tribunal was a result of a series of long struggles for more than 19 years by the victims and their families. They have faced many obstacles and barriers and are either the victims themselves who are still alive or the victims' families and relatives who are the historical witnesses of the Tanjung Priok incident, who have been demanding justice and accountability for what happened at the time. Efforts were done individually and in collaboration with groups of lawyers and human rights organizations.
The unveiling of the truth, the attainment of justice and redress through rehabilitation, restitution and compensation are the source of hope for those who have waited for so long. We all hope that the ongoing trial to examine the dossiers of the Tanjung Priok incident can be conducted in line with the standards of a fair trial, one which should be better than the ad hoc tribunal on East Timor. From early observations of the trial execution, KontraS has not seen any indications that might lead to the realization of those hopes; several things such as an unclear prosecution which was unable to completely describe the background of crimes against humanity in the Tanjung Priok case, along with the defendants' lawyers' attitude to the attorney general's accusation, as well as of a number of witnesses' testimonies performed in the tribunal have a tendency to gloss over the real facts.
Description of the Tanjung Priok Massaccre2
On 7 September 1984, Sergeant Hermanu, Babinsa of 0502 District Military Command arrived and asked Jama'ah As-Saadah to remove pamphlets and announcements pasted on the wall fence of Mushall. Those pamphlet contained criticisms against the governments' policy and invitation to attend a tabliq akbar (great religious public meeting). According to KontraS' investigation, on 8 September 1984, Sergeant Hermanu returned to Mushala Asa'adah along with S. Samin to remove those pamphlets. He entered the Mushala without first taking off his shoes, then came out and ordered his colleague to take out other pamphlets sticking on the wall of the mushala fence. Since he could not remove them completely, he ordered S. Samin to sewer water over . Several parishes protested against the action but were threatened with pistol as a response.
That night , a number of parishes came for a Koranic recitation coordinated by Amir Biki on Mawar street in Rawabadak area. Amir Biki then suggested to the Mushala boards to write a letter directed to the apparatus relating to the incident. But before the letter could be sent, the massacre on 10 September 1984 already occurred.
On the same day, a number of parishes and the board of Baitul Makmur mosque requested Amir Biki to approach the military apparatus to release the four prisoners. They asked him to do that since Amir Biki was known as the liaison between the people and the military if there were disputes.
On 11 September 1984, according to Panda Nababan's testimony, the National Intelligence Coordination Agency (BAKIN) had made a report on the development of the Tanjung Priok incident and existing public figures involved including Amir Biki.
On 12 September 1984, at 10.00, Amir Biki came to Laksusda Jaya to respond to an official invitation from General Try Soetrisno. The meeting was approximately two hours and discussed the single ideology policy and situation in Tanjung Priok. In this context, four Tanjung Priok residents who were in detention at the 0502 District Military Command were also issues to be discussed. On 12 September 1984, at 20.00 o'clock, a planned recitation was held on Sindang street . Masses of the people who attended the event filled alleys and hallways of Sindang street's neighborhoods.
The speakers mentioned the incident in Musalah Assa'adah and the arrest of the four residents. Amir Biki in his speech gave an ultimatum to the apparatus to release the four parishes from jail and bring them to the speaker's platform before 23:00 Waktu Indonesia Barat (WIB) of that day.
According to witnesses who listened to the speech in Jl. Bugis, fifteen minutes before the crowd of people departed to Kodim, three trucks of perpetrators from Kodim direction were seen cutting off the road connection and they parking precisely in front of County Police, North Jakarta.
Because as of 23:00, the people's demand was still not fulfilled, Amir Biki divided the mass into two groups. One was headed towards 0502 District Military Command, another one to Polsek Koja. The First group was led by Amir Biki and walked through Anggrek Street but were blocked by personnel from arhanud platoon led by Captain Sriyanto on Yos Sudarso Street, right in front of North Jakarta County police. Meanwhile, a platoon of police personnel was ready to ambush the crowd under Police Lt. Hery Suntoyo's command. According to the witness, he saw the lamp turned off and heard shooting from automatic weapons.
The second group led by Salim Qadar moved through Deli street and Jampe street which was already blocked as well by the apparatus in front of Koja Polsek. Shooting by the apparatus was also heard by the second group. One witness said that approximately 10 dead bodies were brought to Al Fudhola Mosque before being taken away by the apparatus. Another witness said that shooting was heard from the direction of the pertamina. Burning of shops and drug stores transpired all along the street where the two groups passed through causing the death of nine persons, 8 of whom were Tan Keu Lin family members. According to a witness, at 22:00, he saw more soldiers and one tank arriving at Koja polsek (pocis).
The victims who were held at 0502 District Military Command from the night of 12 September 1984 or after they experienced physical torture by the 0502 District Military Command apparatus before being transferred to Mapomdam Guntur. During their stay there, they were tortured, forced to confess that they fought against security apparatus and participated in as in the incident that night. From Guntur, they were brought to Laksusda Jaya to be examined for around 1 to 3 days, before being handed over to Cimanngis Military Prison. There, the victims were again tortured in a dark room without sun light for 3 months and only fed once a day.
Among those who were killed, only Amir Biki was officially returned to his family to be buried2. Other victims who were not returned to their families, were buried directly by the apparatus. At 06.30 in the morning on 13 September 1984, a witness saw from a distance tens of dead bodies covered by used newspapers in Rawabadak. He could not get close enough to the location because it was guarded by apparatus. According to another witness, a mass grave of Tanjung Priok's victims was prepared in Condet public funeral under a drizzle and without any lights. The grave was guarded by the apparatus, both in the neighborhood of the funeral and on the gateways.
Situation at the trial 3
From the beginning of the trial, a large number of Indonesian Army's (TNI) personnel from Armed, Arhanud , Kodim (District Military Commander) and Kopassus (Indonesian Special Armed Force) filled the court room. They came in full uniform, complete with knives and pistols , both inside and outside the court room. Their presence, especially Kopassus, in uniform or in camouflage, increased up to 300 persons at the first trial with a case dossiers of a defendant named Sriyanto, on 23 October 2003. This trial was also attended by several TNI high-rank officials.
The heavy mobilization of those high-ranking officials and TNI's personnel who were armed and in full uniform at the ad-hoc tribunal of Tanjung Priok's case can be regarded as TNI's defense for those who were convicted of commiting crimes against humanity, which is not so different from TNI's solidarity with the crime itself.
Intimidation of the victims and their associates was carried out before the trial began. At Sriyanto's trial, several victims were not allowed to enter the court room due to TNI personnel's blockade inside and outside the room. The victims and their families were also continuously followed and watched over by the intelligence service, along with the looting of posters and backdrops as well as intimidation in the form of strongly worded -threats including death threats.
During the trial, there was no protection for witnesses and victims from both the security personnel and law upholders. In every trial, only a few policemen were present to provide security during the trial. The judge council made no effort to put control the visitors from Kopassus who filled the room and carried personnel guns and sharp tools.
The act of TNI's apparatus and intelligence who intimidated the victims was an effort to cover up TNI's fear of being convicted for a humanitarian crime. The intimidation was a form of restricting the right to security and self- protection for everyone, as guaranteed by the Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
A very minimal security , both from the police, the attorney general and the court who are supposed to guarantee the security and the safety of witnesses and victims including their associates and it shows a lack of responsiveness on the part of law upholders. It also manifests the TNI's unwillingness to abide by democratic and legal mechanism in facing problems.
As a consequence of the efforts to freeze the Tanjung Priok case and hamper all legal responsibility, many parties have been trying to use economic situation of Tanjung Priok victims and their families who are structurally discriminated against and impoverished. One of the efforts is by offering material benefits to the victims and their families to prevent them from bringing their case to court.
Since the Islah Islamic Peace Settlement incident between Tanjung Priok victims, their families and security personnel who were involved and on duty on the 12 September 1984 , different objectives coming from the victims and their families can now be seen . They can be segregated into 2 groups, the Islah and non-Islah victims. The Islah victims, who have the objective of making peace before the trial , have refrained from bringing the case and the perpetrators to court. The non-Islah victims have the wish to reveal their cases in court, first, in order to determine the truth and legal responsibility of the perpetrators of crimes against humanity. Only then, they believe can reconciliation be possible.
The Islah victims are quite large in number. There are around 40 persons. The non-Islah victims are approximately only 15 persons. The Islah victims are accostumed to wearing shirts and hats inscribed with "Islah is our pride" and they occupy almost all of seats in the court room. On the contrary, the non-Islah victims are a small group who often cannot find seats in the court room and stand either the back of the room or outside.
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