Filep Karma Needs Urgent Help

December 16, 2010

By Carole Marzolf, Indonesia Country Specialist

The global Write for Rights write-a-thon may have ended last week, but Filep Karma still needs your help more than ever.

While thousands of people were writing on behalf of Filep, who’s imprisoned in Indonesia for raising a flag, he was arbitrarily transferred from Abepura prison where he was held to a police lock-out in neighboring Jayapura. His transfer, along with political prisoner Buchtar Tabuni and others, followed a prison riot triggered by the killing of an escaped convict by prison authorities on December 3rd.  Filep Karma and Buchtar Tabuni (along with another prisoner) were interrogated by police officials as witnesses to the riot.  News reports claim that the police have not charged the men with any criminal offenses.

Since their relocation to police headquarters in Jayapura, Filep Karma, Buchtar Tabuni and other prisoners have reportedly suffered degrading treatment, including denial of access to food and drinking water, medicine, family and legal counsel. Karma, whose health has been fragile since major surgery in July, protested these detention conditions with a several-day hunger strike. Amnesty International is concerned that Filep Karma may be denied access to adequate medical attention.  The men should be granted immediate access to legal counsel of their own choosing, and any medical attention they may require.

The Write-a-thon may be over but there is no time for respite.  Join us in taking action for Filep Karma now.