1 Apr 2009

Reporters Without Borders condemns Indonesian arrest of 4 Dutch journalists

3:11 pm on 1 April 2009

The international media group, Reporters Without Borders, has condemned the arrest of four Dutch journalists in the Indonesian province of Papua.

The four were arrested last month in the Papuan capital after covering a demonstration organised to greet the return of Nicholas Jouwe.

Mr Jouwe, who is one of the founders of the Papuan independence movement, the OPM, had been in exile in the Netherlands for 40 years.

They were released the next day after being held for 12 hours.

Reporters Without Borders says it is outrageous that the Indonesian government prevents foreign journalists from working freely in Papua.

It says closing off a province in this manner violates Indonesia's international undertakings and the country's constitution, which guarantees press freedom.

But Papua police say the journalists violated their visa conditions and immigration regulations.

They say they had not been given permission to film.