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Faisal Haharap, slain LGBT activist
Taman Lawang Shooter Claimed to Be Police Officer: Witness

in INDONESIA, 12/03/2011

The shooter responsible for killing a transvestite and wounding two others claimed to be a police officer, says a witness.

Jajang, also known as Santi, told the Jakarta Globe he was at Taman Lawang, Central Jakarta, early on Thursday morning when the shooting took place. He said he overheard a telephone conversation between transvestites Tantan and Faisal Harahap, who was asking Tantan to come to his aid because he was being harassed by a man claiming to be a police officer.

“Tantan went over to Shakira, asking what was going on, and then I heard three gunshots,” Jajang said.

Faisal, also known as Shakira, died from a gunshot to the chest, while Tantan, also known as Astrid, suffered gunshots to the waist and upper left arm. Tantan had already been allowed to leave Cipto Mangunkusumo Hospital on Thursday.

The third victim, Agus, also known as Venus, was still undergoing surgery to remove a bullet from his chest.

Agus,19, had only recently moved to Jakarta from Bandung.

“Agus left Bandung for Jakarta five months ago,,” Agus’s mother Popoy told the Globe. "He came home quite often, but he always said that he like it there."

Popoy and her husband, Adis, had just arrived at Cipto Mangunkusumo Hospital as Agus was going into surgery.

“Agus was planning to come back to Bandung this weekend for his cousin’s wedding,” she continued.

Meanwhile, Nancy Iskandar, the head of Jakarta’s Transvestite Association, said that it was the first time she knew of a transvestite being shot in the city.

“Usually we have things thrown at us, are hit or shot with rubber bullets, but it is never this bad,” Nancy said.

The victims are being represented by Jakarta Legal Aid Foundation, People’s Legal Aid Foundation, transvestites rights group Arus Pelangi, and other transvestite associations

The organizations stated that they would give permission for Faisal’s autopsy on behalf of his family, while efforts to contact them in Medan, North Sumatra, were ongoing.

Faisal left his family home in Medan in 1998.

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