UN rights expert urges Indonesia to provide emergency medical treatment to jailed activists – JURIST – News
In a declaration published Monday, UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders Mary Lawlor urged Indonesia to provide West Papua human rights defender Victor Yeimo with proper medical treatment to prevent him from dying in prison after reports that his health had deteriorated.
As part of his work, Yeimo had provided information to international media on human rights in West Papua. It was detained in May 2021.
Yeimo was tried in a Jayapura court at the end of August, despite a number of requests from his lawyers for a delay on urgent medical grounds. He was charged with treason and incitement in connection with his peaceful involvement in protests against racism and self-determination in 2019. Yeimo has denied the charges.
In Monday’s statement, Lawlor said she had âseen it before: States deny medical treatment to sick and imprisoned human rights defenders, resulting in serious illness or death. . . Indonesia must take urgent action to ensure that fate does not await Mr. Yeimo. “
It comes after Lawlor and other legal experts raised their concerns over Yeimo’s accusations with the Indonesian government in June. Experts pointed out that Yeimo’s medical conditions put him at risk of COVID-19, which he had not yet been vaccinated against. The report requested information on the legal and factual basis of the charges against Yeimo, and whether they were in line with Indonesia’s obligations under international law.
Lawlor said that Yeimo’s conditions of detention âcould amount to torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatmentâ. She also noted that her treatment appeared to be part of a pattern of reprisals against human rights defenders in Papua and West Papua.