1 Sep 2006

Papuans ask for securtity for detained students

1:43 pm on 1 September 2006

Activists and church groups in Indonesia's Papua province are demanding security guarantees for nine Papuan students being held in police custody in Jayapura.

The Protestant church Gereja Kristen Indonesia, or GKI, has set up a vigil outside the prison with hundreds of supporters, protesting over alleged beatings and torture of the students.

The nine, who are charged in connection with the murder of four Indonesian policemen and an intelligence officer, boycotted their trial yesterday.

The Foreign Affairs spokesman for the Papua National Authority, Jacob Rumbiak, says the Papuans have clearly stated that they cannot go to court...

"It's not safe for them so they say that they will come to the court when the government guarantees their security. The government didn't respond so yesterday court contacted police for nine of the students should be moved from the prison back to police custody and it's made the church and women organisations very worried."

Jacob Rumbiak of the Papua National Authority.