Jakarta. The Indonesian Police on Tuesday welcomed a plan by the National Commission on Human Rights, or Komnas HAM, to launch probe into the killings of six Islamic Defenders Front (FPI) members during a police chase a day earlier.
The police have said the six members of the hardline group were killed in a shootout with officers on a toll road in Karawang, West Jakarta.
In a separate event, FPI senior member Munarman said his six colleagues were armless and “slaughtered”.
“The Komnas HAM has formed a review and investigation team who is currently collecting any information to get a thorough knowledge [of the incident]. The team is also collecting information and facts from those with first-hand knowledge, including the FPI,” the commission said on Twitter.
“We encourage all parties to be cooperative and transparent and this message goes to the National Police as well.”
The National Police responded by saying they welcome an external review by the commission.
“We will provide them with any data they need. We always work transparently so we welcome their plan,” National Police spokesman Brig. Gen. Awi Setiyono said in Jakarta.
He added the internal oversight of the National Police is currently working to verify if the six officers involved in the shootout have followed the procedures.
President Joko Widodo has not commented on the incident.
What did Police Say?
According to the police version of the events that led to the killings, the shootout occurred at around 30 minutes after midnight on Monday.
Officers in three cars were following a convoy of vehicles carrying FPI leader Rizieq Syihab, who has ignored police summonses to face a questioning over alleged violation to the health protocol after he held mass gatherings during the coronavirus outbreak.
Two cars -- a Chevrolet Spin and a Toyota Avanza -- in the convoy made deliberate attempts to distract the officers including by making vehicle contact. Police shot at the tire that eventually stopped the Chevrolet.
Four people came out of the car and one of them began to release shots towards the officers, who returned fires. Two more people came out from the Chevrolet. Police also said some of them brandished machetes.
All the six people were killed by the officers while four other people in the Avanza fled the scene. None of the six officers involved in the shootings was injured.
What did the FPI Say?
Munarman said none of the slain FPI members carried weapon during the time and dismissed police accounts as a slander.
He also said the vehicles involved in the pursuit didn’t carry police symbols and the officers were in plain clothes, making it unlikely to recognize them as law enforcement officials.
The FPI convoy comprises eight cars – four carried Rizieq and family members including three babies and six toddlers.
The other four carried FPI Special Guard members, each car had six people.
The convoy left the Nature Mutiara housing complex in Sentul, Bogor, at around 10.45 p.m. on Monday and took the toll road for Purwakarta. Munarman didn’t specify the exact destination.
The pursuit “and the slaughter of our six guards have been carefully planned by chains of command”, he said in a statement.
The Jakarta Police showed two pistols, ammunitions and at least four machetes as evidence during a press conference hours after the incident.
They later released a conversation from a chat group to prove that some cars in the Rizieq convoy were ordered to attack the chasing officers, including by hitting vehicles.
The Slain FPI Members
The six slain people, aged between 20 and 33, were members of the group’s special guards, according to a police report, which was later confirmed by the FPI.
The group released their identities as follows:
1. Andi Oktiawan, aged 33
2. Ahmad Sofiyan, aged 26
3. Faiz Ahmad Syukur, aged 22
4. Muhammad Reza, aged 20
5. Lutfi Hakim, aged 25
6. Muhammad Suci Khadavi, aged 21
The FPI took their bodies from the Kramat Jati Police Hospital in East Jakarta on Tuesday evening. All but the body of Muhammad Reza will be buried at the complex of an FPI Islamic boarding school in Megamendung, Bogor, the group said.