The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) is outraged at the news that the Indonesian police and telecommunications company P.T. Telkom have tapped a journalist’s telephone line.
According to IFJ affiliate, the Alliance of Independent Journalists (AJI) the Indonesian police and P.T. Telkom, have been secretly tapping the cellular telephone account of TEMPO magazine journalist Metta Dharmasaputra, as well as circulating copies of text messages and conversations recorded without Mr. Dharmasuptra’s consent. The tapping came after Metta received information from a source about a high-profile tax fraud case.
P.T Telkom acknowledges that it released the documents at the request of the police.
The IFJ and AJI support the efforts by TEMPO magazine to defend press freedom, which is under significant threat in Indonesia.
“This is a clear intrusion on a journalist’s privacy, and a violation of professional rights,” IFJ Asia Pacific Director Jacqueline Park said. “The Indonesian police action obstructs the emergence of a free media in Indonesia.”
The IFJ and AJI also condemn P.T. Telkom for ignoring laws in Indonesia which protect journalists from this invasion of privacy in their professional practice.
The IFJ supports AJI’s call to the public to take action by sending appeals to the National Police chief and the director of P.T. Telkom asking for the immediate investigation of this case and legal action to be taken against those found responsible.
For further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific +61 2 9333 0919
The IFJ represents over 500,000 journalists in more than 115 countries