SAR’s Academic Freedom Monitoring Project investigates and reports attacks on higher education with the aim of raising awareness, generating advocacy, and increasing protection for scholars, students, and academic communities. Learn more.

Date of Incident: November 15, 2022

Attack Types: Imprisonment

Institution(s):Unspecified Institution(s)

Region & Country:Southeastern Asia | Indonesia

New or Ongoing:New Incident

On November 15, 2022, Indonesian police forces arrested approximately 14 students, affiliated with a civic group known as the Indonesian People’s Assembly (IPA), for planning a demonstration in criticism of the G20 summit, which was held in Bali from November 15 to 16.

Police forcibly arrested students who had gathered in the city of Mataram to denounce the ongoing summit and transported them to a local police station. Police also arrested students planning a coordinated protest in Selong City (see report)

Prior to the demonstration, the group had requested permission from the police. However, their request was denied because of the summit. The event was part of a series of protests organized by IPA across the country.

The students were released the next day, on November 16.

Scholars at Risk is concerned about the detention of students for nonviolently exercising their rights to freedom of expression and freedom of assembly – conduct that is expressly protected by international human rights instruments including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which Indonesia is a party. State authorities have a responsibility to refrain from restricting nonviolent expressive activity. The detention of students for nonviolent expression, undermines academic freedom and democratic society generally.

*SAR identified this incident in data made publicly available by the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project (ACLED)