‘I Can't Breathe’: Nigerian Diplomat Assaulted by Indonesian Immigration Officials

Nigeria has vowed to review bilateral relations with Indonesia after footage emerged of a consular officer screaming in pain as his head is pushed against a seat in the back of a car.
Simon Childs
London, GB
Nigerian diplomat   Abdulrahman Ibrahim is assaulted by Indonesian immigration officials in the back of a car in Jakarta. ​Screengrab: Vanguard TV on Youtube
Nigerian diplomat 

Abdulrahman Ibrahim is assaulted by Indonesian immigration officials in the back of a car in Jakarta. Screengrab: Vanguard TV on Youtube

Nigeria has vowed to review bilateral relations with Indonesia after footage emerged of immigration officials roughly assaulting one of its diplomats in the back of a car.

Video footage that went viral on social media shows several immigration officials shoving Abdulrahman Ibrahim in the back of a car with one official pushing the diplomat’s head with his hand. Ibrahim, a consular officer based in Jakarta begins screaming in pain as his head is pressed against a seat, saying “My head, my neck, I can’t breathe!”

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Ibrahim had been detained on the streets of Jakarta on the 7th August. He screams in distress for almost the entirety of the minute-and-30-second video.

Nigerian newspaper Vanguard reported that “the Nigerian official suffered the maltreatment after he was asked to produce his papers, which he did. Not satisfied, the immigration officials allegedly dragged him out and forcefully tried to apprehend him.”

A statement from the Nigerian foreign ministry condemned “in the strongest terms what is in effect an egregious act of international delinquency by Indonesian State actors against an accredited representative of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, with absolutely no justification and against international law.

“The Nigerian Government demands appropriate sanctions against the relevant officials and has recalled its Ambassador in Indonesia for consultations, including a review of bilateral relations.”

According to Nigerian newspaper the Independent, the government of Indonesia has apologised to Nigeria. “Usra Hendra Harahap, Indonesian Ambassador to Nigeria, tendered the apology when he was summoned by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyema,” the newspaper reported.