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JAYAPURA, Indonesia (Jan. 3, 2000 – koridor.com/Kabar-Irian)---Chairman of the Papua Council, Theys Hiyo Eluay, is happy being transferred from Irian Jaya Regional Police Headquarter to Abepura Prison. In fact, he is starting to enjoy his detention period by keeping himself busy with activities like badminton, morning walks, and reading the newspaper.

All of these are possible because the facilities in Abepura Prison (10 kilometers/6 miles west of Jayapura) are more humane compared with the detention cell at Irian Jaya Regional Police Headquarter.

Theys and four of his friends -- namely, Don Flassy, Thaha Al Hamid, Pastor Herman Awom and John Mambru -- along with all the material evidence in the form of documents were officially submitted by the Irian Jaya Police to the State Prosecutor's Office in Jayapura last Friday.

Theys and his friends are accused of violating article 106 of the Criminal Code Procedures (KUHP) and threatened with 20 years to life imprisonment.

They are detained in a 5 x 6 meter (16.5 x 19.8 foot) sized special cells in the prison.

Theys is in one cell with John Mambru while Thaha Al Hamid, Herman Awom and Don Flassy are in the cell next to Theys. These special cells are separated by about 20 meters (66 feet) from the other cells.

"The cell doors are even open from 06:00 until 19:00 Eastern Indonesian time. As such, there is plenty of time for them to socialize or engage in sports. This could sufficiently lessen the psychological impact on them," said Anum Siregar, legal counsel of Theys and friends, when phoned by koridor.com today.

Another activity that can be enjoyed by Theys and friends is reading various newspapers and magazines. They also can view a small television.

"They are also allowed to accept guests in their cells without strict limitations. Even their families are happier with a condition like this," said Anum.

During the conversation with Theys this afternoon, he attested to not withdrawing from his plans to carry out the mandate of the Second Congress of the People of Papua, that is to ask for independence.

KABAR-IRIAN ("Irian News") Websites: http://www.irja.org/index2.shtml and http://www.kabar-irian.com 

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