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URGENT APPEAL:  The On Going Criminalization of Mr. Karjana- Human Rights Defender on Land Rights in Indonesia

Dear Friends,

The Commission for the Disappeared and Victims of Violence (KontraS) writes to inform you a criminalization case of Human Rights Defender in Indonesia, Mr. Kardjana who advocate for land rights in Indonesia

Case Details

The Commission for The Disappeared and Victims of Violence KontraS has obtained a consent from the victim to submit this letter and by this letter we would like to inform you the case relating to the Human Rights Defender in Indonesia, Mr. Kardjana-a which criminalized by local government. Mr. Kardjana has been doing advocacy for land rights conflict which covers around ??80.680 hectares of grazing land. The land right conflict occurred between the residents (mostly farmers) in Bogor Village and the local government of Indramayu. of In this conflict, the local government has insisted to make the land under their authorities, while the Supreme Court has issued the verdict on 2012 that the land is owned by the farmers of Bogor Village. The conflict itself has started from Colonial era up to now.

The residents of Bogor Village have been trying to resist the arbitrary and irresponsible acts of local governments on grazing land. In example, the local government forcibly took the land including the fruits and criminalized one farmer namely Kardjana- who is advocating the land rights of the residents and establishing the Association of Farmers on Grazing Land of Bogor Village. In 1968, Kardjana with some farmers of Bogor villages forcibly arrested by police officers to Sub-district military Command on charges of grabbing and manipulating the land, fortunately the district court has decided that he was not guilty for the case and release him.

Kardjana has continue to advocating the land rights, and get the criminalization again in the year of 2012-2013 when he and 37 farmers were arrested by police and charged with land lease for private purposes and provocating the farmers, but the allegations are not proven and he has been release.

In regards with the struggle over the grazing land status in 2009, H. Kardjana and farmers from Bogor Village took up the legal process by filing the grazing land rights to the District Court until the Supreme Court and won the case. Contradict to it, in 2012 the Major of Indramayu has  issued a decree related to the takeover of grazing land status. As a result, the farmers of Bogor Village could not work because the local government officers use the security and thug to intimidate the farmers.

Up to now, the Major of Indramayu does not obey the verdict issued by Supreme Court. He continue to instruct state apparratus for controlling the land. The farmers experienced intimidation, expulsion, threat for using molotov bomb, burning banner and shack. Those irresponsible act has implication on the livelihood of the citizen.

Explanation above illustrates that there has been many forms of violence and also violated the civil and political rights committed by the police, the army and local government officials. In other words, the state has lost its role in the protection of its own citizens. In fact, as has been stipulated in Article 28G (1) of the 1945 Constitution, the state must provide protection of a person, family, dignity, property under his control to be a sense of security and protection from threats to its citizens. More over, those acts has clearly violated the provisions on Article 15 paragraph (1 & 2) and Article 17 paragraph (1) Police Regulation No. 8 of 2009 on the Implementation of Principles and Standards of Human Rights and also Human Rights Law No. 39 of 1999 article 34 on Human Rights and Article 9 paragraph 1 of the international Covenant on Civil Rights and Political related to freedom and personal security.

Currently grazing land still controlled by the local government and leased to the business sector. While the ‘leasing land’ policy has coming from the Indramayu local government regulation up to now. The Bogor Village residents itself are afraid to control the land because of many terrors coming from the thugs which allegedly under the Major’s control. 

We urge the government of Indonesia to take several measures below, inter alia ;

a. The government of Indonesia to recognize the work and existance of Human Rights Defenders such as Mr. Karjana. Moreover to adopt regulation regarding the recognition and protection towards human rights defender, such as Mr. Kardjana.

b. The Government of Indonesia to stop the violence and any form of criminalization towards Mr. Kardjana and farmers in Bogor Village Indramayu.

c. The Government of Indonesia to protect the land rights of the residents of Bogor Village from the Indramayu local government authorities.
Thank you for your consideration. We look forward to hear back from you.
Jakarta, 18 September 2014

 

 

Suggested Action :
Government Official Address :
1. Mr. Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono
President of the Republic of Indonesia
Jl. Veteran No. 16, Central Jakarta
Tel: +62 21 3458 595
Fax: +62 21 3483 4759

2. Ms. Harkristuti Harkrisnowo
General Director of Human Rights
Ministry of Law and Human Rights
Jl. HR Rasuna Said Kav. 6–7
Kuningan, Jakarta 12940
Tel: +62 21 525 3006, 525 3889
Fax: +62 21 525 3095

3. Gen. Sutarman
Chief of the Indonesian National Police
Jl. Trunojoyo No. 3
Kebayoran Baru, Jakarta Selatan 12110
Tel: +62 21 384 8537, 726 0306
Fax: +62 21 720 7277
E-mail: info@polri.go.id

4. Mr. Djoko Suyanto
Chairperson of National Police Commission
Jl. Tirtayasa VII No. 20
Kebayoran Baru, Jakarta Selatan
Tel: +62 21 739 2317
Fax: +62 21 739 2317
E-mail: secretariat@kompolnas.go.id, skm@kompolnas.go.id
5. The Office of  Local Government of Indramayu
Jl. Mayjen. Sutoyo No.1/E, Indramayu – Jawa Barat
Telp. (0234) 2722454
Fax : (0234) 272797
Humasindramayu@gmail.com