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International Forum for Aceh
50-02 47 Street, 2nd Floor, Woodside, New York 11377, U.S.A.
Phone: (1-718) 392-9781, 937-0510
Fax. : (1- 718)786-2935
October 22, 1999
His Excellency Mr. Kofi Annan
United Nations Organisation
New York, USA
Request for the United Nations Immediate Action
to Stop the Indonesian Atrocities Against the Acehnese People.
We have the honour to introduce ourselves to your Excellency and to the august world community body that you are leading, the United Nations
Organization. We are the International Forum for Aceh, a non-profit NGO registered in New York. On this particular occasion we have the
honour to represent the Support Group for Human Rights in Aceh (SCHRA) that was formed last July 24th during the Asian Conference on Aceh
organized jointly by the Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (Forum-Asia) and ourselves.
Founding members of SCHRA include such international NGO as TAPOL, Asian Network for
Democratization of Indonesia (ANDI), FORUM-ASIA, well-known Indonesian human rights NGOs such as KONTRAS, SOLIDAMOR and FOPKRA and Acehnese NGOs such as SIRA, FARMIDIA and SMUR.
The situation in Aceh continues to deteriorate. Killings and kidnappings of civilians by the Indonesian military occur almost everyday. Only last week the head of a student
organization in Lhok Seumawe, North Aceh, was picked up by uniformed gunmen wearing hoods; he is still missing. Yesterday, 3 students helping refugees in a camp were arrested by the paramilitary police and until now are still being held incommunicado. Following an attack by independent fighters of an army truck last week, the soldiers went to a nearby village and burnt down 10 houses and 10 shops then arrested 13 youngsters from a refugee camp.
Massacres after massacres have been perpetrated by the Indonesian military in full view of the international media. Last month in Geneva the United Nations Human Rights Commission issued a Chairman's declaration condemning the human rights violations by the Indonesian military in Aceh, whereby he promised to send a fact-finding delegation to Aceh.
There seems to be no follow-up on this pledge.
We would like to impress on Your Excellency that the only way to stop the atrocities perpetrated openly by the Indonesian military against the ordinary people in Aceh, which are much and much more terrible by comparison than those perpetrated in East Timor (so far 36 mass graves have been discovered one of which contained more than 200 bodies), is by the direct involvement of the United Nations, in order to pressure the Indonesian government to stop immediately its laissez-faire attitude towards the atrocious actions of its military and police forces. We trust that Your Excellency would heed our call for help in this matter immediately and not wait until more and more people are murdered.
We remain, Your Excellency, at your disposal for any information you may require on this matter,
Most sincerely yours,
Jafar Siddiq Hamzah
Her Excellency Ms. Mary Robinson
United Nation High Commission
On Human Rights