18 Dec 2013

Cyclist says misrepresented by Indonesian media on West Papua

4:41 pm on 18 December 2013

A Canadian man who cycled around the world to raise awareness of human rights abuses in West Papua says Indonesian media outlets have insulted him by distorting comments he made about prisoners' conditions.

Jeremy Bally completed his 12,000 kilometre cycling trip this month and is soon to fly out of Jakarta to return home.

Mr Bally says The Jakarta Globe and the Jakarta Post both misquoted him about his recent visit to West Papua to meet political prisioners.

He says the news articles reported him as saying the prisoners were treated well and had no problems.

"It's extremely insulting to me to be characterised in that way and to the efforts of the prisoners, first of all, and to everyone who helped organise this action to have it just so blatantly distorted in the media. So I am going to make a callout to my network today to write letters to the editor to the Jakarta Post to make sure that it is well known that this is unacceptable."

Jeremy Bally says the Jakarta Globe has now removed the inaccurate comments.

Mr Bally says West Papuan political prisoners are regularly subject to torture, poor living conditions and poor medical care.