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Amnesty urges probes into police violations

Rights groups says acts of abuse can not be allowed to continue

Police behind razor wire near the state palace in Jakarta Police behind razor wire near the state palace in Jakarta
  • ucanews.com staff, Jakarta
  • Indonesia
  • April 5, 2012
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Amnesty International has called on the government to immediately launch swift and thorough investigations into allegations of serious rights abuses committed by the police.

“We are continually receiving reliable reports of torture, mistreatment or other cruel, inhumane and disgraceful punishments,” said Amnesty’s Deputy Director for the Asia-Pacific, Donna Guest, in an open letter yesterday.

The letter was sent to the minister of law and human rights, and to the national police chief and human rights commissioners.

Guest cited four cases that require immediate attention, including the killing of two teenage brothers while in detention in Sijunjung prison, in West Sumatra.

Police arrested the boys in December for allegedly stealing a mosque’s charity box and a motorbike. They were found dead a few days later.

Police said the boys hung themselves in their cells, but the family believes they died under torture because bruises were found on their bodies.

“We believe one possible reason why such torture and other mistreatment keep occurring in Indonesia is because of the failure to revise the Penal Code. It has not yet included a section on torture as regulated in the United Nations Convention against Torture,” Guest said.

Authorities must “make sure fast, thorough and effective investigations by independent and impartial bodies into reports on police torture and mistreatment are carried out,” the letter said.

It also called for those allegedly involved in committing acts of torture and abuse to be brought to trial.

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