Indonesia: Hidayat, Locked Inside the Prison ‘Red Zone’

From Hidup Biasa, translated from Kokemi:

This news that follows is just one story of how horrible life in prison is. Even worse than that, of being already locked up inside one prison and then finding another prison inside that one. This is what our comrade Hidayat is suffering right now, isolated under lock and key in a place that is known as the Red Cell, a miniature prison 2m by 1m, darkened and subject to the prison guards’ stifling intimidation and terror.

From what we have heard, Hidayat has been confined in this claustrophobic space for five days. Apart from reports that he is frequently intimidated and beaten, Hidayat has never received the whole packages of food and drink that visitors bring him. And what pains us the most, his visitor access has been limited. No-one has been allowed to meet with him.

A colleague has become our informant during the time Hidayat has spent confined in this cramped prison. He has said that Hidayat was always cornered into exploitative schemes devised by the guards and other prisoners who act as the guards’ right-hand men inside the prison.

The informant explained:
“The guards and their lackeys are always pushing Hidayat, his books and possessions are often stolen. He is also excluded in the interactions that take place on our block, and worst of all he is always targeted by the guards for repeatedly resisting the exploitation that is disguised as compulsory rules inside the prison. Maybe because he can no longer contain his anger, he fights back, punching prisoners which he believes are colluding with the guards!” our informant said explicitly.

Since Hidayat’s anger broke out and he openly hit back at the guards and their lackeys he has been locked in a room which prison staff refer to as the Red Cell, a prison-within-a-prison for inmates that have resisted the guards’ rules and the custom of seniority which they have fostered inside the prison.

What exactly Hidayat’s status is as a prisoner has also not really been clearly established. Not only because of the lack of clarity of his hearing, but also colleagues have informed us that the prosecution service has also confirmed that they do not have any clear understanding of his case, despite the fact that he has spent almost a month behind bars.

From the few short messages we have received, it appears that in the next few days Hidayat’s lawyers will meet with police and the prosecution to ask for an explanation for this situation which befell Hidayat as he demonstrated his support for the people of Bima’s struggle against mining corporations, in Makassar recently.

Once again, with smouldering rage, we call out for solidarity.
Not one of our comrades will be left alone to fight tyranny.
Because anger must always be encouraged, even when we are already being consumed by the flames of the furnace.
Tyranny must be destroyed, just as our anger must break apart the prisons.

In Solidarity,
Kokemi editorial.

(06/02/2012)

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