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DISAPPEARANCES - INDONESIA: Profiles of 13 Activists Still Missing

The following is a list of missing people documented and handled by Kontras, the Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence, and the Legal Aid Office in Yogyakarta, which is working with Kontras. Although former missing activist Pius Lustrilanang has claimed that he saw two of the missing persons on the list, Sonny and Yani Afri, release on 12 March 1998 from the detention centre they shared, the men have not returned to their families. The two are among the longest missing since the last positive sighting of them was 26 April last year.

1. Deddy Hamdun, 43, last seen on 29 May 1997, during the general election, with Noval Alkatiri and his driver Ismail. Some suspect he was kidnapped because of his involvement in campaign rallies supporting the United Development Party (PPP). Others believe the kidnapping of the father of three was linked to his land selling activities.

2. Noval Alkatiri, 31, last seen 29 May 1997, is a businessman who has his own travel agency, PT Sangkuriang Tour and Travel, and a labour supply company. Born 25 May 1967, he has a daughter, Nafilah, 8, from his former wife Vivi. His family insists that he was not an activist; they say he left to meet Deddy after the latter called him.

3. Ismail, 31, Novalís driver, was with his employer on 29 May 1997. His family in Ambon relies on Novalís family for information on him.

4. Herman Hendrawan, 28, last seen 12 March 1998. Although news had broken that Hendrawan was in the Philippines, there has been no confirmation whether it was true. He chairs the National Committee for Democratic Struggle (KNPD) and the East Java branch of Perjuangan Buruh Indonesia (Indonesian Labour Struggle, PBI, under the banned Peopleís Democratic Party, PRD). The student of social and political sciences at Airlangga University in Surabaya is believed to have been kidnapped shortly after holding a committee media conference at the Jakarta Legal Aid Institute on Jl. Diponegoro 74, Central Jakarta. Activist Pius Lustrilanang has also claimed to have communicated with Herman in detention.

5. Suyat, 23, a student of Slamet Riyadi University, Surakarta, Central Java. The activist of the KNPD was last seen early February this year. He was abducted from his parentsí home in Surakarta by men claiming to be security officials.

6. Petrus Bima Anugerah, 25, last seen 31 March 1998, and believed to be kidnapped in South Jakarta. Born 24 September 1973, he is a member of the Association of Indonesian Students for Democracy (SMID) and a student at the Driyarkara Theology Institute. He is the second of four children. His mother is a recently pensioned school teacher, and his father is a hospital paramedic in Malang, East Java.

7. Yani Afri, better known as Rian, 27, a public transportation driver last seen 26 April 1997. His family denies reports of his political activities. It has been reported that he is a supporter of the Indonesian Democratic Party and its North Jakarta branch in Tanjung Priok. He and his friend Sonny were arrested by North Jakarta Military District soldiers. They were interrogated regarding accusations of involvement in a bomb plot targeting the Kelapa Gading Mall in North Jakarta during the election campaign period in May last year. Released after one night, the two were picked up by four unknown men outside the military facility. They have not been seen since.

8. Sonny, 28, a part-time public transportation driver, last seen 26 April 1997. Like Yani, he rented an apartment in Tanah Abang, Central Jakarta.

9. Ucok Munandar Siahaan, last seen 14 May 1998, a student at the Perbanas banking academy. He lives in Depok.

10. Hendra Hambali, 19, a student last seen 14 May during the riots at Glodok Plaza, Central Jakarta.

11. M. Yusuf, last seen 7 May 1997, is a school teacher. According to reports he was taken from his home on Jl. Raden Saleh, Central Jakarta, by unknown men. His family says he was not engaged in any political activity.

12. Y. Muhidin, 22, last seen around Sunter, North Jakarta, near his residence on 14 May 1998. Tanjung Priok police have said they detained him for two days until 16 May, after which his whereabouts are unknown.

13. Triyono, 23. His mother in Yogyakarta received an unsigned telegram saying Triyono was kidnapped on 13 May 1998 in Jakarta. "We are suspicious of the telegram claiming it was sent by the Gadjah Mada University senate," Budi Hartono, a lawyer at the Yogyakarta Legal Aid Institute, said. The senate said it sent no such telegram, and Triyono was not registered as a student. Earlier this week, his mother, Sunartin, a resident of Ponorogo, Central Java, brought a photograph to LBH picturing Triyono addressing a seminar at a hotel. Budi said the hotel has refused to give any information on the seminar and who its organisers were. "We canít say whether heís an activist or not," he added.

This list does not include other missing people whose families have not reported their relatives to the above bodies, such as Wiji Thukul, 35, a poet and member of PRD who was last seen at the end of August 1996. Reports claim he told his family he was going to have his eye checked after sustaining injuries during a labour demonstration in Surakarta. His family lives in Yogyakarta. An anonymous source said he was in hiding and would not reveal his whereabouts even to his family. Of the initial list of missing students of the University of Lampung, the Legal Aid Office (LBH) in Bandarlampung says at least two are still missing, but it could not yet reveal their identities nor their genders. They went missing after students clashed with security officers in a demonstration on 19 March 1998 at the university. About 10 of the initially reported missing students have turned up on campus, said Edwin Hanibal, head of the social and political division of LBH Bandarlampung. Meanwhile, one of the missing people has been found dead: Leonardus "Gilang" Nugroho Iskandar, a street musician in Surakarta. He was found dead from a gun shot wound in a forest near Magetan on 23 May 1998 after being missing for two days.

(Source: The Jakarta Post, 2 August 1998.)

Posted on 2001-08-27
     
 
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