President Jokowi Urged to Instruct Termination of Intimidation and the Threat of Murder against Indigenous People of Muara Tae

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Bogor, June 28, 2016: The entry of PT. Borneo Surya Mining Jaya (PT. BSMJ) in Kampung Muara Tae, Jempang Subdistrict, West Kutai Regency, East Kalimantan has led to intimidation and death threats for the Muara Tae indigenous people who chose not to release their land.

This latest incident was triggered by a summons from the Jempang Sector Police Chief on June 22, 2016 to Petrus Asuy (indigenous leader of Muara Tae) to attend a mediation meeting at the request of PT. BSMJ related to indigenous people’s land claims in Kampung Muara Tae. Petrus Asuy was asked to sign the land verification document carried out by the village management and PT. BSMJ.

Through a reply to the summons of the Kapolsek (6/23), Petrus Asuy asserted that he would not attend this mediation meeting because the Kapolsek was not supposed to conduct mediation that was not an agreement of both parties, and it was alleged that the land ownership verification document was invalid. Petrus Asuy also added that this problem had been processed at the national level through the National Human Rights Commission and the Ministry of Villages, Disadvantaged Regions, and Transmigration.

Masrani, another Muara Tae community leader stated, “Due to this refusal, we received intimidation and death threats from corporate support groups. We need legal protection. “

Agrarian conflicts in Muara Tae village have occurred since 1971, even to this day it has multiplied and none has been resolved. Since 1971, Muara Tae Village with an area of 12,000 hectares has been sealed off by six companies. The presence of a number of these companies triggered a prolonged agrarian conflict due to the community’s rejection of HPH companies, HTI companies, oil palm plantations, and mining companies that took turns in controlling land from the Dayak Benuaq.

The chairman of the Kaoem Telapak Association, Zainuri Hasyim, condemned this act of intimidation and death threats. “The problem that occurred at Muara Tae is the impact of the failure of the Government to reform the agrarian sector, which is strongly related to the environment and forestry sectors. This causes uncertainty at the site level, which is then used by parties who have an interest in community land, “he said.

Abdon Nababan as Secretary General of the Archipelago Indigenous People’s Alliance (AMAN) stated, “National Inquiry of the Indonesian National Human Rights Commission has found a variety of collective and individual human rights violations experienced by the indigenous community of Muara Tae Village. The National Human Rights Commission has also submitted recommendations needed to stop human rights violations that happened decades ago. “

The company PT. BSMJ uses security forces to mediate dispute claims among fellow indigenous peoples without proper preliminary preparations for a fair and balanced mediation process, which then creates hostility that results in death threats.

“The government must stop these human rights violations, including efforts to divert the expropriation of customary land in Kampung Muara Tae by PT. BSMJ became a land dispute between indigenous peoples. AMAN urges KAPOLRI to investigate the death threat to Petrus Asuy and his family, and confirms the problems between PT. BSMJ with the Muara Tae Indigenous people can be resolved peacefully without violence “, continued Abdon Nababan.

The Muara Tae indigenous people continue to fight and fight to defend their customary territories, including repeatedly blocking a company bulldozer that is escorted by state officials. In this long struggle, the Muara Tae community experienced various forms of violence, intimidation and criminalization. Various advocacy efforts have also been carried out through reports to local governments, Komnas HAM, the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), and direct letters to the Minister of Villages.

“Sudah saatnya Presiden Joko Widodo turun tangan untuk menuntaskan “It is time for President Joko Widodo to intervene to resolve the problem that has been going on since 45 years ago,” said Zainuri Hasyim. “Resolving the problem in Muara Tae will resolve the suffering of the community, as well as set a precedent for resolving conflicts affecting indigenous peoples in other places,” he said.

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Note for Editor:

  • The persistent and prolonged rejection of the Muara Tae community received the attention of the UN Development Program Agency (UNDP) in the form of an Equator Prize award in September 2015. See more
  • The company that is entrenched in Muara Tae is PT. Sumber Mas (since 1971), industrial plantations (HTI) of PT. Sumber Mas (1993), oil palm plantation of PT. London Sumatra Tbk and coal mining PT. Gunung Bayan Pratama Coal (1995), PT Munte Waniq Jaya Perkasa Palm Oil plantation (2011), PT. Borneo Surya Mining Jaya (2012), as well as coal mining of PT. Rumble of Karsa (2012). The existence of PT. Rumbling Karsa overlaps with the location permit of PT. Borneo Surya Mining Jaya and PT. Munte Waniq Jaya Perkasa.
  • National Inquiry is an effort by Komnas HAM to contribute to efforts to resolve cases of human rights violations. National inquiry applies a monitoring function to investigate (investigate) cases, research and assessment functions to analyze the root of the problem and formulate recommendations for remedying human rights violations. The theme of the rights of indigenous and tribal peoples (MHA) over indigenous territories was chosen because this issue has a strong human rights dimension. More details can be traced at dan halaman 198-215
  • The Indigenous Peoples Alliance of the Archipelago (AMAN) is an independent social organization (ORMAS) whose members consist of indigenous communities from various corners of the archipelago.
  • Kaoem Telapak Association, a transformation organization of the Telapak Association, as a forum for realizing the sovereignty, independence and dignity of its constituents, namely farmers, fishermen, and indigenous peoples in Indonesia. This association aspires to realize justice between natural elements and between generations in the management of living natural resources in Indonesia





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