Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Stop criminal prosecution of Legal Aid Lawyers Monitoring Peaceful Assembly

2 Legal Aid lawyers,Mr. Tigor Gemdita Hutapea and Mr. Obed Sakti Andre,  monitoring a peaceful protest of about 20,000 workers in Jakarta on 30/10/2015 were arrested, tortured and are now being prosecuted . Below is the protest statement by  Jakarta Legal Aid Institute –LBH Jakarta, which is also endorsed by 34 organisations and individuals

Urgent Letter Nr : 449/SK-KPO/III/2016

To : President of Republic of Indonesia, Mr. Joko Widodo.

RE: Immediately Stop the Criminalization of Human Rights Defender! 

Mr. Tigor Gemdita Hutapea and Mr. Obed Sakti Andre are both legal aid lawyers of Jakarta Legal Aid Institute, or LBH Jakarta, who were conducting legal assistance, documentation, and advocacy of 20,000 labours who expressed their opinion in public to protest against Government Regulation No. 78 Year 2015 on October 30th, 2015. Their conducts were in accordance with Law No. 16 Year 2011 on Legal Aid. However, later on that day, Mr. Tigor and Mr. Obed were arrested and faced charges under Article 216 and 218 of the Indonesian Criminal Code without enough preliminary evidences. 

On October 30th, 2015 at 4.00 PM, LBH Jakarta Team started assisting the peaceful protest of 20,000 labors who demanded the revocation of Government Regulation Nr. 78 Year 2015. Both Mr. Tigor and Mr. Obed immediately coordinated with the Chief of Central Jakarta Police, Lieutenant Colonel Hendro Pandowo, and informed him that they were the representatives of LBH Jakarta and the labors’ legal assistants on that peaceful protest, in case that legal issue occur. The representatives also informed him that their role during the protest is protected by the Law of Legal Aid, therefore they can’t be arrested. 

At 6.00 PM, the labor coordinator requested the permission of Lt Cl. Hendro Pandowo to do evening prayer together at 6.30 PM before the protesters dismissed themselves. After the prayer, protesters started to dismiss themselves from the protest area gradually. This process took time due to the large number of the masses and the transportations that they used.Suddenly at 7.10 PM the Police started to shoot water-cannon against the protesters and their command cars. The Police also shot tear-gases in the direction of the labors who were about to leave the location. 

Due to the water-cannon and tear-gas shots, the dismissed protesters accelerated their pace but tens of policemen chased the labors who were on command cars then violently beat them bare-handedly and by blunt objects, kicked and dragged those who were caught. The police also caught labors who were in the back rows. Three command cars were damaged by the policemen who wearing the T-shirt with ‘Turn Back Crime’ emblem on it. 

Witnessing the incident, LBH Jakarta Team monitored the dismissal, among others by taking documentation. While documenting, Mr. Obed was shouted at by Policemen who told him to not taking any pictures of violence against the labor protesters. They rudely asked Mr. Obed to erase the photos. Mr. Obed felt threatened and ran away from the policemen, who then chased and beaten him when they caught him. The police seized Mr. Obed’s mobile phone. While being beaten, Mr. Obed managed to explain that he is a lawyer of LBH Jakarta who provided legal assistance for the labors, but the policemen did not stop the violence. Mr. Tigor saw the violence against his friend and immediately recorded the incident. The policemen were aware of his action and attacked him too. They both injured physically and experienced traumas. 

Afterwards, Mr. Tigor and Mr. Obed along with 23 labors were forcibly arrested and taken to the head-quarter of Provincial Police of DKI Jakarta (Polda Metro Jaya). On the way to the police head-quarter, the police also did a series of violent against Mr. Tigor and Mr. Obed. 

In Polda Metro Jaya, Mr. Tigor, Mr. Obed and the 23 protesters were forcibly searched and were interrogated by the police until 5.00 PM the next day (October 31st, 2015). Initially, they were examined as witnesses, but few hours later their status changed into suspects under Article 216 and Article 218 of the Indonesian Criminal Code without any elaboration on the two evidences as the basis, as required under Article 184 of the Criminal Procedural Code. At 5.30 PM on the October 31st, 2015, they were released from custody, as suspects.
We believe that the above mentioned ill-treatment, arrest and criminalization against Mr. Tigor and Mr. Obed are constitutes human rights violation under the Declaration on Human Rights Defenders, which has been acknowledged by Indonesia. The Declaration emphasizing the state obligation to take all necessary measures to ensure the protection of human rights defender against any violence, threats, retaliation, de facto or de jure adverse discrimination, suppression or any other arbitrary action as a consequence of his or her legitimate exercise as the human rights defenders (Art. 12 Paragraph 2). 

We believe that the ongoing criminalization against Mr. Tigor and Mr. Obed is the government’s effort to silent and threat human rights defenders’ activity in upholding human rights in Indonesia. Such action will question Indonesia’s commitment before the international community in enforcing human rights in its territory. 

It is also a shame that the Indonesian law enforcement officials do not understand the positive law which provides that legal aid workers cannot be prosecuted when they are exercising their duty, as stipulated under Law No. 16 Year 2011 on Legal Aid. As law enforcement officials, the Police and the Prosecutor should be aware of and comprehend the laws well.
Thus, we urge for immediate termination of criminalisation against Mr. Tigor and Mr. Obed, as well as their release from any legal charges on account of justice and law enforcement in Indonesia! 

Jakarta, 15 March 2016

Jakarta Legal Aid Institute –LBH Jakarta
Alghifari Aqsa, SH.

Organisational supporters; 

1. Aceh Human Rights NGOs Coalition –Indonesia, 
2. Aceh Legal Aid Institute (LBH Aceh) –Indonesia, 
3. Action Against Violence and Exploitation, Inc. (ACTVE) –Philippines, 
4. ASEAN SOGIE Caucus –Southeast Asia, 
5. Asian Human Rights Commission –Hongkong, 
6. Bandung Legal Aid Institute (LBH Bandung) –Indonesia, 
7. Christian NGO’s Network in Indonesia (JKLPK Indonesia) –Indonesia, 
8. Community Resource Centre Foundation –Thailand, 
9. Indonesia for Humanity (IKA) –Indonesia, 
10. Indonesian Mental Health Association –Indonesia, 
11. Institute DIAN/Interfidei, Yogyakarta –Indonesia, 
12. Institute Perempuan –Indonesia, 
13. Knights for Peace International –Korea, 
14. LBH Keadilan Bogor Raya –Indonesia, 
15. Legal Aid for the Press (LBH Pers) –Indonesia, 
16. Makassar Legal Aid Institute –Indonesia, 
17. Malaysians Against Death Penalty and Torture (MADPET) –Malaysia, 
18. Peace Women Across the Globe Indonesia (PWAG Indonesia) –Switzerland, 
19. Protection International (Indonesia Desk) –Brussels, 
20. PUSAKA ( –Indonesia, 
21. Sarawak Dayak Iban Association –Malaysia, 
22. Sawit Watch –Indonesia, 
23. SEALawyers –Southeast Asia, 
24. Semarang Legal Aid Institute –Indonesia, 
25. Surabaya Legal Aid Institute –Indonesia, 
26. Thai Committee for Refugees Foundation –Thailand, 
27. The Alternative ASEAN Network on Burma (ALTSEAN-BURMA) –Burma,
28. The Center for Human Rights Studies of Islamic University of Indonesia (PUSHAM UII) – Indonesia, 

29. Transparency International, Indonesia Desk –Germany, 
30. WALHI National Executive –Indonesia, 
31. Vietnamese Women for Human Rights –Vietnam, 
32. Yayasan Lintas Nusa –Indonesia, 
33. Yayasan Satu Keadilan –Indonesia, 
34. Yogyakarta Legal Aid Institute –Indonesia,

Individual supporters; 
1. Antonio Pradjasto, human rights activist –Indonesia, 
2. Budi Hernawan, PhD., Paramadina Graduate School of Diplomacy –Indonesia, 
3. Elga Sarapung, human rights activist –Indonesia, 
4. Farrastika Shinta, Indonesia civil society –Indonesia, 
5. Indulekshmi Rajeswari, law academics –Singapore, 
6. Maria Christina Yambot, lawyer –Philippines, 
7. Mr. Songkrant Pongboonjun, legal academic –Thailand, 
8. Purwandono, human rights activist –Indonesia, 
9. Willian Nicholas Gomes, human rights defender and freelance journalist –UK, 
10. Zico Mulia, Indonesia citizen –Indonesia,

Surat Desakan
No  :

Kepada: PresidenRepublik Indonesia, Bapak Joko Widodo.

Hentikan SegeraKriminaliasi Pembela Hak Asasi Manusia!

Tigor Gemdita Hutapea dan Obed Sakti Andre adalah Pengabdi Bantuan Hukum LBH Jakarta yang menjalankan tugas pendampingan hukum, dokumentasi, dan advokasi saat berlangsungnya penyampaian pendapat di muka umum untuk menolak Peraturan Pemerintah No. 78 Tahun 2015 pada tanggal 30 Oktober 2015. Tugas yang dilakukan kedua pengabdi bantuan hukum ini telah sesuai dengan Undang-Undang No. 16 Tahun 2011 tentang Bantuan Hukum. Namun kemudian Tigor dan Obed ditangkap dan dijadikan tersangka dalam aksi buruh tersebut dengan tuduhan atas Pasal 216 dan Pasal 218 KUHP tanpa adanya dua bukti permulaan yang cukup.
Pada 30 Oktober 2015, Tim LBH Jakarta mulai melakukan pemantauan aksi damai 20.000 buruh yang menuntut pencabutan Peraturan Pemerintah No. 78 Tahun 2015 tentang Pengupahan. Tigor dan Obed, dua orang Pengabdi Bantuan Hukum dari LBH Jakarta segera berkoordinasi dengan Kapolres Jakarta Pusat, AKBP Hendro Pandowo, mengenai posisinya dalam aksi tersebut untuk melakukan pemantauan dan memberikan bantuan hukum kepada buruh apabila terjadi penangkapan. Pukul 18.00, koordinator massa aksi buruh meminta waktu untuk sholat maghrib berjamaah sebelum membubarkan diri kepada Kapolres Jakarta Pusat. Setelah sholat berjamaah selesai, massa aksi mulai membubarkan diri perlahan-lahan. Proses pembubaran ini memerlukan waktu yang tidak sebentar karena banyaknya jumlah massa aksi dan akomodasi yang digunakan. Pukul 19.10 pihak kepolisian mulai menembakkan water canon ke arah buruh dan mobil komando buruh yang kemudian dilanjutkan dengan penembakan gas air mata kepada buruh yang sudah mulai mengosongkan lokasi aksi.
Setelah adanya penembakan water canon dan gas air mata, para buruh mempercepat langkahnya untuk mengosongkan lokasi. Namun, puluhan polisi melakukan pengejaran terhadap buruh yang berada di mobil komando dan kemudian melakukan rangkaian tindakan kekerasan yaitu pemukulan/pengeroyokan dengan tangan kosong maupun benda tumpul, menendang, serta menyeret buruh yang tertangkap tangan. Polisi juga menangkap buruh yang berada di barisan belakang.
Melihat kejadian tersebut, Tim LBH Jakarta melakukan pemantauan terhadap pembubaran yang terjadi, salah satunya adalah dengan melakukan dokumentasi. Dalam melakukan dokumentasi, Obed dibentak oleh polisi untuk tidak mengambil foto buruh yang terkena tindak kekerasan oleh polisi, dan polisi tersebut meminta kepada Obed untuk menghapus foto tersebut. Obed yang merasa terancam kemudian lari dan dikejar oleh puluhan polisi. Setelah tertangkap, Obed dipukuli, ditendang, dan telepon genggamnya dirampas. Obed sempat menjelaskan kembali bahwa ia adalah Pengabdi Bantuan Hukum dari LBH Jakarta, namun kekerasan tetap dilakukan oleh polisi. Tigor yang menyaksikan kekerasan yang dilakukan oleh polisi terhadap rekannya, Obed, segera melakukan dokumentasi. Namun nahasnya ia terlihat oleh para polisi tersebut sedang merekam kejadian pemukulan terhadap Obed. Akhirnya Tigor juga mendapat serangan kekerasan dari polisi.
Selanjutnya Tigor dan Obed bersama dengan 23 orang lainnya ditangkap paksa dan dibawa ke Polda Metro Jaya. Selama perjalanan menuju Polda Metro Jaya, Tigor dan Obed kembali mendapat serangan kekerasan dari polisi di dalam mobil yang membawa mereka ke kantor Polda Metro Jaya.
Di Polda Metro Jaya, Tigor, Obed, dan 23 massa aksi lainnya digeledah paksa dan diperiksa oleh polisi sampai pukul 17.00 tanggal 31 Oktober 2016. Pada awalnya pemeriksaan dilakukan sebagai saksi namun beberapa jam setelahnya, status diubah menjadi tersangka atas pelanggaran Pasal 216 dan 218 KUHP tanpa menjelaskan 2 alat bukti sebagai dasar penetapan tersangka. Setelah itu pada pukul 17.30, Tigor dan Obed dilepaskan dengan status tersangka.
Kami percaya bahwa penganiayaan, penangkapan, dan penuntutan hukum terhadap Tigor dan Obed merupakan suatu pelanggaran hak asasi manusia yang telah diakui secara internasional di bawah Deklarasi PBB tentang Pembela HAM atau Human Rights Defender, yang sudah diakui oleh Indonesia. Deklarasi ini menghendaki Negara mengambil semua tindakan yang perlu untuk memastikan perlindungan terhadap para Pembela HAM dari setiap pelanggaran, ancaman, balas dendam, diskriminasi de facto atau de jure yang bersifat sebaliknya, tekanan atau tindakan sewenang-wenang lainnya sebagai akibat dari aktifitas mereka yang sah dalam melaksanakan hak-haknya sebagai Pembela HAM. Hal ini sesuai dengan Pasal 12 ayat 2 Deklarasi Pembela HAM PBB.
Kami yakin bahwa adanya kriminalisasi terhadap Tigor dan Obed merupakan suatu upayadari pemerintah untuk membungkam Pembela Hak Asasi Manusia dalam kegiatannya membela hak asasi manuia di bumi pertiwi. Jika kriminalisasi terus berlanjut, maka hal ini akan mencoreng wajah Indonesia di depan komunitas internasional, yang menyatakan diri bahwa Indonesia berkomitmen dalam penegakan HAM di tanah air.
Adalah memalukan juga bagi penegak hukum di Indonesia, yang tidak memahami hukum positif di Indonesia bahwa Pekerja Bantuan Hukum tidak dapat dipidana dalam tugas pemberian bantuan hukumnya. Hal ini sesuai UU No. 16 tahun 2011 tentang Bantuan Hukum, yang seharusnya diketahui secara fasih oleh para penegak hukum baik Polisi maupun Kejaksaan.
Atas kejadian ini, Kami menuntut agar kriminalisasi Tigor dan Obed dihentikan segera secepat-cepatnya dan melepaskan segala tuntutan hukum yang dikenakan kepada Tigor dan Obed, demi keadilan dan penegakan hukum di Indonesia!

Jakarta, 15 Maret 2016
[Nama Organisasi]


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