Ita Martadinata Haryono

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Ita Martadinata Haryono was an Indonesian human rights activist, who was murdered in 1998, a case which is still unsolved.

Her real name was Martadinata Haryono, however, she was better known by her nickname, Ita. At the age of 18 and while a senior year student in her high school, Ita was found dead on October 9, 1998 in her bedroom in Central Jakarta. Her stomach, chest, and right arm were stabbed ten times, while her neck was slashed. The murder occurred just three days after a Jakarta press conference held by the human rights organizations Ita had been involved with. The groups claimed that several of their members had received death threats in an attempt to stop them calling for an international investigation into the gang-rapes, murder, and burning of Indonesian Chinese girls and women during the May 1998 riot; a riot which ultimately forced Suharto to step down from the presidency.

Police concluded that Ita's death was an ordinary crime, committed by a drug addict who had entered Ita's home to rob it. According to the police statement, he was caught in the act by Ita and therefore decided to kill her. However, others question this statement because Ita and her mother, Wiwin Haryono, were due to leave in a few days for the United States together with four victims of the May 1998 riot to present their testimony before the U.S. Congress. Ita and her mother had been deeply involved in giving help and counseling to the victims of the riot.

The group Ita and her mother had worked most closely with, an organization called Tim Relawan (the Volunteer Team for Humanity), concluded that Ita's murder was a warning to them and others who were involved in this humanitarian effort, to discontinue their activities.

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