AI Index: ASA
30 March 1998
UA 100/98 Incommunicado Detention / Fear of ill- treatment / Health concern
Andi Arief has been in incommunicado detention since 28 March 1998. There is grave concern that he is at risk of torture or ill-treatment. He is also known to have been seriously ill recently and in view of this there is concern that he may require immediate medical assistance.
Andi Arief was taken into custody by a number of plain-clothes men who arrived in two vans to collect him from his parents' shop in Lampung, Sumatra. They neither provided information concerning their identity nor produced an arrest warrant.
Despite efforts by Andi Arief's family to trace their son through human rights lawyers no information has been forthcoming. Local police and military authorities have denied any knowledge of his whereabouts.
Andi Arief is the leader of SMID, the Indonesian Students' Solidarity for Democracy, an organization regarded as illegal by the Indonesian Government. SMID is affiliated to the People's Democratic Party (PRD), an unofficial political party banned by the government in 1997.
In July 1996, fourteen members of the PRD were arrested and tried following riots in Jakarta and sentenced to prison terms of up to 13 years. Amnesty International believed they were detained as a result of their non-violent political activities. Since then, the PRD has been linked to the discovery of explosives in Jakarta and several members of the party have been arrested in connection with this. Most recently three PRD activists were detained by military in March 1998 and reportedly beaten and given electric shocks immediately after their arrest prior to being handed over to police custody.
Since January 1998, over 300 peaceful political activists have been taken into custody in Indonesia amidst a climate of increased repression surrounding the March Presidential elections when President Suharto was returned for a seventh consecutive term. This has resulted in an increase in the number of activists held in incommunicado detention. In addition, several are known to have been tortured or ill-treated in military custody and denied access to human rights lawyers or their families.
In February, five student activists from West Java were held for two days in incommunicado detention by the military and ill-treated. Two other activists, Pius Lustrilanang and Desmond J Mahesa (see UA 46/98, ASA 21/07/98, 11 February 1998 and follow-up) have both been missing since early February and are believed to be held in military custody.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/faxes/express/airmail
letters in Bahasa Indonesia or English or your own language:
- urging the authorities to clarify the whereabouts of Andi Arief and the precise charges under which he is being held;
- urging the authorities to grant Andi Arief access to independent human rights lawyers, his family and medical professionals;
- urging the authorities to release Andi Arief unless he is to be charged with a recognisably criminal offence.
COMMANDER OF THE ARMED FORCES (ABRI)
[Salutation: Dear General Wiranto]
Markas Besar ABRI
Jl. Medan Merdeka Barat No 13
Telegrams: General Wiranto, Jakarta, Indonesia
Faxes: + 62 21 36 1471 (Armed Forces HQ) / + 62 21 37 8144
PLEASE SEND COPIES OF YOUR APPEALS TO: Embassy of Indonesia, 38
Grosvenor Square, London W1X 9AD. Fax: 0171 491 4993
AND, IF POSSIBLE, TO THE FOLLOWING:
MINISTER OF JUSTICE
Jl. H.R. Rasuna Said Kav. 6-7
Faxes: + 62 21 525 3095
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Please do not send
appeals after 11 May 1998.
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