An Indonesian court on Wednesday ruled that President Joko Widodo acted unlawfully by shutting down internet services in Papua province during last year’s deadly unrest.
The Jakarta State Administrative Court ruled in favour of a lawsuit brought by freedom of information advocacy groups, who argued that the government’s decision to shut down mobile data during the riots violated people’s right to information.
Joko and his information minister, Johnny G Plate, were co-defendants in the lawsuit.
“The action taken by the defendants was unlawful,” the panel of judges ruled in their verdict.
About a dozen people were killed during the two weeks of unrest. It was sparked by perceived heavy-handed and racist treatment of Papuan students by security personnel on Java island.
The Papua region, which makes up the Indonesian part of New Guinea island, has been the scene of a low-level separatist insurgency since the 1960s.