Acheh, 23 Juni 2005
Assalamu'alaikum wr wbr.
GAM-TNA DEMANDS A FULL AND IMMEDIATE IMPARTIAL INVESTIGATION OF THE SHOOTING OF A RED CROSS WORKER
Acheh - SUMATRA.
THE ARMED FORCES OF GAM-TNA DEMANDS A FULL AND IMMEDIATE IMPARTIAL INVESTIGATION OF THE SHOOTING OF A RED CROSS WORKER FROM HONG KONG
Acheh-Sumatra National Liberation Front, Military Central Command, The Commander-In-Chief. Press release 22.06.05
The armed forces of GAM - TNA - demands a full and immediate impartial investigation of the shooting near Lamno Wednesday night of a Red Cross worker from Hong Kong.
Indonesia has already blamed us for the incident. But according to reports from my commanders in the area, none of our fighters were within 15 km of the incident. There was also no armed clash, as Indonesia claims. However, Indonesian troops do patrol the area day and night.
As GAM's spokesman explained in an earlier statement, we Achehnese have no motivation to shoot foreigners. Indonesia does.
Since the tsunami, the Indonesian government and military have tried to push the international community out of the province, while holding on to the money. Indonesia does not want foreigners poking around the politics of the place or finding out who is responsible for the steady toll of tortured, murdered Achenese civilians.
For years, Indonesia has sought to restrict foreign visitors, whether journalists, peace monitors, human rights groups or anyone else.
Two years ago, Indonesian soldiers shot to death a German bicycle tourist as he bedded down in his tent on the beach. They jailed for four months a nosy Scottish academic and a nurse from Iowa who treated victims of Indonesian beatings. They kicked out a Japanese, a Korean and several other photographers who tried to take photographs in the non-tsunami struck areas.
During martial and civil emergency rule, Indonesia denied entry to dozens of foreign journalist. They refused to renew the visa of a highly respected Jakarta-based Australian journalist who accurately reported that an Indonesian soldier poured boiling water on an Achehnese baby. They hunted, nearly killed and then jailed the only foreign journalist brave enough to report from the front lines of the war.
For years, we Achehnese and foreign human rights groups have called for an international investigation into the grave human rights abuses committed in our troubled homeland. Despite a succession of Indonesian presidents promising to shed no more Achehnese blood, pull the troops out and put people responsible on trial, nothing has changed. And the world was kept out.
Sadly, it has taken the tsunami to bring the world here. We Achehnese want the world to stay.
The shooting of a foreign relief worker would seem to serve a dual purpose: driving the world away and making GAM look bad. A prompt and proper investigation will establish the real facts, not Indonesia's wishful fictions.
MILITARY CENTRAL COMMAND
Received from: Sofyan Dawod