Jakarta. Indonesia's Alliance of Independent Journalists, or AJI, on Monday (19/06) said the police should investigate the beating of a journalist from state news agency Antara by officers from its Mobile Brigade unit at the Indonesian Open badminton tournament in Jakarta on Sunday.
"We urge the police to investigate the incident and bring the perpetrators to justice. There is a video of the incident, the officers involved can be clearly seen in it," AJI Chairman Ahmad Nurhasim said.
On Sunday, Antara journalist Ricky Prayoga was queuing at an ATM when a member of the police’s Mobile Brigade (Brimob) unit approached him and started beating him for no reason.
"[The officer] and three of his friends grabbed me and threw me to the floor like I was a thief," Prayoga said.
A bystander recorded a video of the incident and uploaded it to social media. The recording soon went viral.
Jakarta Brimob Deputy Commander Heru Novianto on Monday offered a formal apology to Ricky and Antara.
"This is an embarrassing incident. On behalf of Jakarta Brimob, I apologize. This is a violation of the law by our officers," Heru said.
The first Brimob officer who approached Ricky on Sunday has been identified as Adam. According to Heru, Adam and his friends are now still being investigated.
"If he is proven guilty, he will be given a disciplinary punishment," Heru said.
Ahmad said legal action needs to continue even after Heru's apology.
"Only legal action will deter other officers from acting in an arrogant and unprofessional manner like what happened on Sunday," Ahmad said.
He stressed that violence is violence, no matter what the reason is, and that no criminal acts should be tolerated.