Sunday, February 22, 2009

The following is a news story from the Asian Anarchist Network. It concerns the struggle of local farmers in Pati Indonesia against the construction of a cement plant that would contaminate their water supply. the following has been slightly edited for English grammar.
Fight The Law: Solidarity!‏:
From: super samin
Fight The Law: Solidarity!
Once again we have to face another obstacle in stopping the corporations from destroying our environment, culture and economy. Together with the plan to built the cement factory in Pati, Central Java that caused lots of conflicts and problems among local people because the factory will be built on the North Kendeng Mountain where are most rivers and lakes are located, the authorities has arrested nine farmers and activists that joined the protest.
This rejection of the cement factory not only comes from Sukolilo's farmers but also the Sedulur Sikep community or as it used to be called Wong Samin, the local community being known in Javanese society as very wise and humble environment fighters.
But this effort now facing an obstacle related with the arrests of nine farmers and environment activists during their protest to close this cement factory.
The chronology of the events started Thursday morning, 22 January 2009 when the people tried to have a dialog with their village authority about the news of the selling of their land to the Semen Gresik, one day after they made posters with the statement that Our Land Belongs To Us because of zero response from their village authority regarding this news. Because the authorities seemed to refuse to meet them, they decide to block and close the road to the four survey cars from Semen Gresik that arrived that day. But then when the night came and there is was no news from the authorities about having that dialog with them, those people just sat and wait patiently without making any violence acts at all.
The situation got intense when 250 Brimob and Samapta suddenly moved towards the people that sat around the Semen Gresik's cars. They screamed and swore at the people while trying to make them move away from those cars violently. They kicked, hit, stepped on and threw woman and men that insisted on staying. Women and children screamed in panic. Then people started to fight back. Children, women, men and even elders throwing rocks towards those officers while the sound of gunshots filled the air. Thirteen police officers were wounded and three Semen Gresik's cars destroyed. Many people, men and women, being victims of those police's brutality. Video camera and digital camera belonging to our friends were also heavily damaged. Without having strong evidence the police then arrested those nine people. They are under arrest with accusation of violence, persuasion and doing unpleasant activities(Molly can only imagine the contents of this charge. Sorta like "disturbing the peace I guess). Among those nine people that being arrested there were Kamsi (65 yrs), Sunarto (52 yrs), Sudarto (48 yrs), Sukarman (26 yrs),Sutikno (26 yrs), Gunarto (25 yrs), Purwanto (22 yrs), Mualim (21 yrs) and Zainul (20 yrs).
These police brutality actions are still continuing after the arrest by physical and mental torture, by hitting those nine farmers on their heads, eyes and other parts of their bodies.
At present, those nine farmers are still under arrest at the Semarang Police Station, in central Java, waiting for their further trial. Therefore, in the name of our land and people's fight against those tyrants, we are calling out all of our friends out there to be actively involved on this solidarity effort.
Release our nine brothers from prison as soon as possible!
Stop the Semen Gresik project at Central Java right away!

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