Soldiers go on trial in Aceh for brutalising civilians
BANDA ACEH: Indonesian soldiers accused of beating up civilians in Aceh went on trial on Tuesday in the province where a major military offensive against separatist rebels is in its third week.
First Private Saiful Bakri and second privates Tony Nuryanto and Agus Hidayat were accused of injuring three people at Lawang in Bireuen district during a May 27 search for rebels.
The charge carries up to two years and four months in jail.
Military prosecutor Captain Siregar told the court-martial in Lhokseumawe that the soldiers became angry after villagers claimed they did not know anything about members of the Free Aceh Movement (GAM).
The village head was beaten up and suffered an eye injury, a woman was beaten up thoroughly and another man lost consciousness, the prosecutor said. An ambulance brought the victims from hospital to the court on Tuesday but they did not testify. Two showed signs of bruising on their faces. —AFP