Manokwari- Four Political Prisoners on Treason Charges

 Sayang Mandabayan was arrested on 2 September 2019 while carrying 1,496 small Morning Star flags at Manokwari airport. She participated in and gave speeches at the Uprising protests on 19 and 27 August 2019 in Sorong. When she was arrested at Manokwari airport on 2 September 2019, she had just arrived from Sorong to attend a protest in Manokwari that day. An inspection was conducted because a lifejacket was missing from the aircraft. Airport staff found 1,496 small Morning Star flags made from paper in her bag. The police were called and subsequently arrested her. She has been charged under Article 106 of the Criminal Code. Ms Mandabayan was an employee of the Sorong City Council but she was dismissed from this post due to the allegations made against her. Shortly after her arrest, a photo of Ms Mandabayan breastfeeding her infant baby behind bars went viral. Since this time, access to Ms Mandabayan, including from her family, had been difficult. She suffered from toothache but was not afforded proper medical treatment. Her trial began on 13 February 2020. Prosecutors sought a ten month jail term for her. She was found guilty of incitement, not treason, and sentenced to nine months in jail, being freed on 3 June 2020. Three days later, she spoke about racist Indonesian law as an ex-political prisoner in a webinar held by the student body of Universitas Indonesia. She has been campaigning for West Papua’s right to self-determination. On 29 July 2020, she was interrogated for hate speech at the police station after police summoned her over a Facebook post.

Erik Aliknoe, Yunus Aliknoe and Pende Mirin are students at Universitas Papua and were arrested without a warrant on 19 September 2019 on the basis of having organised a protest on 3 September 2019 at which two Morning Star flags were flown and where they delivered pro-West Papuan independence speeches. They were charged under Articles 106 and 110 of the Criminal Code, along with Articles 160, 212 and 213. Their trials began on 13 February 2020. Prosecutors demanded ten months jail terms for incitement instead of treason. They were sentenced to nine months jail for incitement. Erik Aliknoe and Pende Mirin were released on 6 June 2020, while Yunus Aliknoe was released on 17 June 2020.