Papuan families’ lawyer criticises murder reconstruction, calls for independent probe

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The reconstruction of the murder and mutilation of four West Papuans
The reconstruction of last month's murder and mutilation of four West Papuans at the Mimika Resort Police Headquarters last weekend ... questions about its validity. Image: Jubi/Papuan DPR Team

Tabloid Jubi in Jayapura

The lawyer of the families of the victims of the Mimika murder case has criticised the military reconstruction of the killings and mutilation of the four Nduga residents, describing it as “odd” and calling for an independent investigation.

“The reconstruction of the murder by the security forces is very odd,” lawyer Gustaf R Kawer said in Jayapura yesterday.

“It is mostly the version of the perpetrators and less from the witnesses.”

According to Kawer, the reconstruction that took place last Saturday demonstrated 40 scenes. Of these, only 10 showed the role of the Raider/20 Ima Jaya Keramo Infantry Brigade soldiers accused over the murder and mutilation.

Kawer questioned how the reenactment of the crime emphasised the role of Roy or RMH — a fugitive still at large who did not participate in the reconstruction.

“The story that was built in the reenactment from the beginning to the end revolved around Roy. But the person was not even there.

“It was as if Roy was made the sole perpetrator even though there were Indonesian military [TNI] members named as suspects,” Kawer said.

‘Finding it strange’
The murder and mutilation of four civilians from Nduga Regency occurred at Settlement Unit 1, Mimika Baru District, Mimika Regency on August 22, 2022.

The four victims were Arnold Lokbere, Leman Nirigi, Irian Nirigi and Atis Tini.

Kawer said the reenactment showed one of the victims, Arnold Lokbere, in front of a mosque at 10pm local time.

“We find it strange that people around the location who are mentioned in the reenactment do not know about the murder,” he said.

Kawer called for an independent team to fully investigate the chronology and reconstruction of the Mimika murder and mutilation.

“The case has now been handed over to the military police and the police, and will be tried in the general court and military court as a general criminal case,” Kawer said.

Meanwhile, Papua Legislative Council member Namantus Gwijangge said the victims’ families considered the reenactment of the murder scene as “rushed”.

Call for ‘death sentence’
“The family asked the Papua Legislative Council to have the case investigated by an independent team, and the perpetrators be sentenced to death,” Gwijangge said.

On Monday, the Papua Office of the National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM Papua) said the reconstruction had not fully revealed the murder and mutilation.

Komnas HAM Papua head Frits Ramandey noted that several accused refused to act out certain scenes so some roles were replaced by other people.

Komnas HAM Papua also said that the reconstruction raised suspicion that there were two more soldiers of the Raider/20 Ima Jaya Keramo Infantry Brigade involved in the murder and mutilation but they had not been named as suspects.

However, Komnas HAM Papua did not mention the names or ranks of the two other soldiers allegedly involved.

Republished from Tabloid Jubi/West Papua Daily with permission.

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