On 26 August 2008 at 2:30 pm, 200 local township guardian police (SATPOL PP) attacked the office building of National Council of Churches Indonesia and GMKI (SCM Indonesia). This attack was done by the police as a response to GMKI’s position against local bill no. 8/2007, a public security Bill restricting the people from expressing openly their opinions on matters related to government policies.
The police force prevented the SCM Indonesia from displaying banners against the bill no.8/2007 around the GMKI’s National Secretariat office. The police cajoled, insulted the SCM students, threw stones, destroyed windows and doors of the GMKI’s office including the Communion Churches of Indonesia’s (CCI) office.
Following this incident, the Vice Governor of Jakarta Province visited the damaged area and apologized to the leaders of the CCI through a press conference. However, the police force returned for the second time to inflict more damage and destroy properties, worst than the first attack. Students were reportedly beaten-up and injured during this time.
Prior to this attack, the police force (Satpol PP) was already in conflict with GMKI on the issue of ownership of the land where the national office of GMKI is located in Salemba Raya or Salemba Street in Central Jakarta. Despite the High Court’s decision to stop demolishing the building, following the appeal from GMKI, the violent occupation by the Police continued. PT Kencana Indotama Pratama’s company, the claimant of the disputed land ordered the use of bulldozer to destroy the buildings where GMKI’s office is situated. Half of the GMKI’s office premises has been destroyed by this violent take-over.
Therefore, Indonesian SCM appeals to the Indonesian government, the police force and general public:
- To condemn any forms of violent repression against civilian by the police force;
- To calls for the investigation of the police attack on GMKI and CCI building;
- To demand for disciplinary actions against that the police engaged in the violent attack;
- For the Jakarta Provincial Government to take immediate action to stop the attacks and to make a public apology to the Christians institution around Salemba area;
- To all Indonesian people to understand the incident objectively.
Goklas Nababan (General Chairperson)
Naftali Jarin (General Secretary)