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The Indonesian People Outraged: Stop Police Brutality, Repeal The Omnibus Law NOW

Indonesian People’s Faction Press Release

Jakarta, October 8, 2020

We, the Indonesian people, would not have to spill our rage had it not been for the Indonesian Government and House of Representatives that have betrayed us by passing the Omnibus Law that we have long opposed. The wave of demonstrations and strikes from October 6-8 across all provinces in Indonesia by students, college students, workers, farmers, the general public and other various concerned groups are proof of the Indonesian people’s outrage and disappointment towards the Indonesian Government and House of Representatives. 

Based on what we experienced and witnessed, as well as reports from various elements of society, directly and indirectly, with visual and empirical evidence that we have gathered, it is our assessment that the state has systematically prepared to deploy violent security forces in its response to the protests by various groups of society, from workers, farmers, students, college students, Indigenous Peoples, fishermen, women and other minority groups. 

In addition, we also found that the state has systematically planned to influence public opinion to discredit the voices of the protests from various groups of society and influenced opinion by using false facts. The state has also specifically used taxpayers’ money to pay and mobilize social media Buzzers and Influencers to mislead public opinion from the truth. All the narratives that discredit the people’s protest, such as allegations of sponsorship behind the mobilization of the people, are false information created by the state. 

As a result, there have been countless victims of violence that have fallen due to the violent acts of the state. From Aceh to Papua, from Gorontalo to Nusa Tenggara, the people’s outrage was met with baton beatings, tear gas shots and rubber bullets. The clash that occured in various cities in Indonesia is a result of provocation by violent security forces that have clearly prepared weapons, barricades and all forms of violent weapons. 

We have also experienced first hand, and received reports that demonstrators who have fallen and are in need of medical care were continually treated violently, threatened and terrorized by security forces. Access to medical supplies and medical help were also obstructed and seized by security forces in the field. 

We protest against some of the news coverage from large mainstream media that do not stand for the truth by clearly framing the events by leaving out the fact that people are enraged to discredit the mass actions. Mainstream media has straight out dismissed the facts about what is being demanded by the Indonesian people and the betrayal by the Indonesian Government and House of Representatives. Mainstream media have also not fairly covered the indiscriminate acts of brutality committed by security forces. 

We, the Indonesian people, order the Indonesian President Joko Widodo to order the Indonesian Chief of Police (Kapolri) Idham Azis to stop all forms of excessive violence and the deployment of security forces. The Chief of Police must order police officers on duty to stop the use of tear gas, rubber bullets and batons used to beat demonstrators, and stop the confiscation of logistical support given by the people to support medical officers in aiding demonstrators. 

We, the Indonesian people, order the Leaders of Political Parties and the President to take responsibility for the passing of the Omnibus Law that have triggered the outrage of all Indonesian people to flood the streets. 

We, the Indonesian people, order the Indonesian President Joko Widodo and all members of Parliament to take responsibility for the countless victims of violence perpetrated by security forces as a result of passing the Omnibus Law. Responsibility must be immediately taken to repeal the Omnibus Law. 

We, the Indonesian people, order the Indonesian President Joko Widodo to order the subordinate of Chief of Police Idham Azis to immediately and transparently make public the names and locations of the demonstrators that were arrested today across Indonesia. We demand that the demonstrators that were arbitrarily arrested 1) to have access to legal aid independently, 2) to be treated humanely without violence in custody, 3) to be immediately released without conditions, 4) to guarantee their safety and health based on health protocols to prevent the COVID-19 transmission.

In the name of the Indonesian People

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