The Volunteers of Humanity, a prestigious Indonesian human rights organization, has condemed the rapes of (mostly) Chinese women during the riots in Jakarta last month, and claimed that twenty women died after being raped. Seventeen people died during the riots, and three died shortly after the riots ended. Nine victims of rape were abandoned in burning buildings where their rapists had left them to die. Two victims committed suicide and several victims died on the spot or in the hospital.
The rapes that occurred in Jakarta during the riots have been shown to follow a systematic pattern and many now believe they were planned and organized. Some of the girls raped were as young as nine and family members were often made to watch the rapes. Most rapists took identification from their victims and at least one victim received a telephone threat after she reported the rape. The description of the rapists received so far prompted the Volunteers of Humanity to believe that the assailants may have been part of the security force. Even though these rapes have been reported, witnessed and verified, the head of Indonesia’s armed forces still maintains that there is no proof that rape occurred during the riots.