National Sections of the L5I:

Halt right-wing militia attacks against the Indonesian left

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On Sunday the 4th of March the East Java regional conference of the Indonesian National Liberation Party of Unity, or PAPERNAS, was viciously attacked by the right wing and anti-communist FAKI militia (Front Anti Komunis Indonesia). About a hundred FAKI thugs, wielding knives, fought their way into the conference venue, where PAPERNAS activists fought to defend themselves and their conference. PAPERNAS activists sent out urgent appeals for solidarity from inside the venue. Among them where Dita Sari, a famous trade union organiser and the PAPERNAS candidate for presidential elections in 2009.

The attack took place against the background of an increase in repression against the Indonesian left from both the state and right wing militia forces. FAKI also attacked the PAPERNAS founding congress held in Yogjakarta in January. On the first day of the congress 100 black uniformed thugs, and more again on the second day, tried to halt the congress. They were unsuccessful thanks to the self-defence organised by participants with support of local students. But there were injuries amongst the 380 delegates from right across the huge country. Not long ago too a meeting organised by the Marxist influenced group Rumah Kiri (Left House) in Bandung was attacked and broken up by the police. These attacks are proof that the state forces, in collusion with right wing militias, are trying to halt the advance of the workers and social movements in Indonesia. The PAPERNAS party, for example, has locals in 23 of the provinces and about 140 cities. It is a unification of a number of organisations, including the People’s Democratic Party (PRD) formed on a limited programme which centres on nationalising Indonesia’s oil and gas industry, and canceling its the foreign debt.

The attack against the PAPERNAS is an attack against all progressive and social forces. It is urgent that all workers, students, and progressive organisations publicly declare their opposition to such attacks, defending hard-won democratic rights against state repression and the reactionary FAKI militia. However the workers movement cannot rely on the Indonesian state, the police forces etc, to defend its democratic rights. The left, trade unions political parties and progressive student movements should immediately join forces to organise its own independent and democratically controlled self-defence militia. They should launch a campaign against the right wing violence. Socialist, trade unionists, worldwide should support them with declarations of solidarity, protests to the Indonesian government and material assistance.

Protests should be faxed/e-mailed to Indonesian embassies in every country and phone or SMS messages to national police chief General Sutanto on +62 818315703.

Also send a solidarity message to Papernas, email <kp_papernas_pusat@yahoo.com> or phone +62 21 8305819 or
+62 815 843 68608 (Katarina Pujiastuti, International Department,
KP-PAPERNAS) or +6281771122 (Dita Sari)

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