DVI Indonesia an Overview

In this last few years, DVI or Disaster Victim Identification becomes a popular term along with many disaster events in Indonesia as part of police role in disaster handling, which is managed by Indonesian National Police through Indonesian DVI Committee as its suborganization in a systematic capacity building to deal with any kind of disaster in the country or abroad.

DVI is an identification process of dead bodies aftermath a disaster which is an internationally recognised sequence of activities that has been developed over several years by the Interpol and published in its guideline where the first INTERPOL DVI Guide was published in 1984 and subsequently revised over several years, and the newest one was published in 2014, to fulfill the observance of human rights of the victim and the next of kin, also as part of police investigation, that legally defensible and scientifically accountable. (insurance, inheritance, marital status).

It has been tested in large scale disasters in many regions across the world and has proven to be a reliable method by which victim data in the form of “post-mortem material” can be matched against “missing person data”.

The philosophy was reinforced by the INTERPOL Secretary General at an international conference in The Hague, Netherlands, where he said; “experience had shown that field deployments are complex and require a uniform response when providing onsite support following a disaster, whether natural or man-made…” (INTERPOL Media Release, 2013).

DVI is a formal process of identifying multiple dead victims due to disasters through the application of scientifically proven techniques, in consonance with the provisions of the INTERPOL DVI Guidelines, that applied in the event of disaster with mass casualties, such as bus and plane crashes, collapse of building or conflagration, marine vessel accidents, acts of terrorism or even natural disasters.

The existence of the National Committee of DVI Indonesia were commenced with the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding between the Chief of INP and the Ministry of Health on the 27th July 2003 regarding the Handling of the Dead Victims in a Mass Disaster, then followed by the formation of the DVI Indonesian National Committee which was consists of a composite of personnel from the National Police (Police Medicine and Health Centre), Ministry of Health, Faculty of Medicine, Forensic Experts (Police Forensic Laboratory and INAFIS), another Disaster Management Team (Firefighters, and SAR).

The organizational structure of the National Committee of DVI Indonesia itself adopted the Universal Disaster Organization structure based on the National Law No 24/ 2007  regarding Disaster Handling, and Regulation of the Minister of Health No.21/2008 on Technical Manual for Crisis Catastrophic Health, which was formulated during the 2nd National DVI Meeting in Jakarta in 2007 as outlined in the Decree of the Chief of INP: No. Pol. Skep/450/IX/2007 dated 14 September 2007, regarding the composition of National, Regional, and Provincial DVI Team Indonesia for the Period of year 2007-2010.

The reason of the formation of Regionals DVI in between the National and Provincial DVI was to shorten the chain of command which will be needed for any prompt action aftermath a disaster, therefore the whole 32 provincial DVI then divided into 4 regionals called as: the 1st West DVI Region with its center in Medan, covering the area of Aceh, North Sumatera, Riau, Riau Islands, Jambi and West Sumatera; 2nd West DVI Region with its center in Jakarta, covering the area of South Sumatera, Bangka Belitung, Bengkulu, Lampung, Jakarta, West Java and Middle Java, Yogyakarta, Banten, West Kalimantan and Central Kalimantan; the Central DVI Region with its center in Surabaya, covering the area East Java, South Kalimantan, Bali, West Nusa Tenggara and East Nusa Tenggara; and the East DVI Region, covering the area Sulawesi, Maluku, Papua and West Papua.
Identification of dead bodies aftermath a disaster may take a long time, sometime become a never ending activity when there are still unidentified body at the morgue due to the lack of reference information from the family or the conditions of the dead body itself, however the DVI team will keep commit to do their best in repatriating the right dead body to the right next of kin, and with its motto “Better not to be identified rather than misidentified” and the slogan “Respect to the death”.

To comply with the Interpol DVI Guide as a universal method of identification, a DVI Operation comprises of 5 initial phases, eventhough it is not a must to run the whole phases in sequence, usually it is started with the scene processing at the scene, then the post-mortem phase where the experts doing dead body or postmortem examination in the mortuary, the ante-mortem phase to collect referral information or sample from the victim’s family in the most convenient place, then reconsile those datas from those two phases above to match each other, and lastly to evaluate the whole operation in the debriefing phase.

Capacity building of DVI Indonesia were noted after the convening of the first Asia Pacific Rim INTERPOL DVI Meeting in Makassar on 25 January 2000, which was followed-up with the completion of 5 year Diploma Forensic Medicine (DFM) program from the year 2000 – 2004 in collaboration with Groningen University in the Netherlands,  experiencing the International DVI Operations during the handling of the victims of the Bali Bombings in 2002, and DVI operations which over a bus accident “Situbondo Tragedy” on 8 October 2003, then wrapped with the sustainable National Program on DVI in Jakarta and the JCLEC in Semarang in collaboration with the Australian Federal Police since 2006.

Prominent Events
Experience over experience kept coming since Bali bombing 2002, with some prominent local and international events such as Hotel J.W.Marriot bombing in 2003, Australian Embassy Bombing in 2004, Tsunami Aceh in 2004, Mandala Airline Crash in Medan in 2005,  Senopati sea craft Accident in Java Sea in 2006, Tsunami in Pangandaran in 2006, Earthquake in Yogyakarta in 2006, Garuda Airline Crash in Yogyakarta in 2007, IAF Cassa A212-200 crash in Bogor in 2008, collapse of the Situ Gintung dam in Tangerang in 2009, IAF plane crash in Bandung and Magetan in 2009, Victoria Bushfire Australia in 2009, Earthquake in Padang in 2009, Jakarta Mega Kuningan bombing in 2009, Train collision in Pemalang in 2010, Warior Flash Flood in 2010, Earth Quake and Tsunami in Mentawai in 2010, Mount Merapi eruption in 2010, INP Plane crash in Nabire in 2010, the stranded ship of illegal migrants in Trenggalek in 2010, Sukhoi crash on Mount Salak Bogor in 2012, Army helicopter crash in North Kalimantan in 2013, Malaysian MH17 crash in 2014, Air Asia QZ 8501 crash in 2014, and Air Force Hercules plane crash in 2015.

The Milestone
Over so many DVI events, it was noted that Sukhoi DVI Operation in 2012 was recognized as the milestone when DVI Indonesia conquered the public trust as a great performance of Indonesian National Police as well as a learning event for the people to know about DVI and how to cooperate with DVI team, thereafter followed by various successful DVI operations that attract National and International concern as the later DVI operation on the crash of MH 17 and Air Asia QZ 8510 in 2014.

Eventhough no one DVI Operation would be the same one to another, but always need an imagery to picturize how the DVI Team working, where MH 17 DVI Operation was one of a great picture of an international DVI cooperation. The event was begun when the Flight MH 17 of Malaysia Air Service from Amsterdam to Kualalumpur was reported missing in the area of Ukraine on July 17th, 2014, the immediate action of DVI Indonesia was to cooperate with the Indonesian embassies in Kuala Lumpur, Kiev, and the Hague, aiming to obtain the confirmation of the existence of the flight itself and to collect information regarding the possibility to have Indonesian citizen onboard, that unfortunately there were listed 12 Indonesian citizen among those 298 people onboard which were consist of 15 crews and 283 passangers with different country of origin from 11 citizenships consist of Australia, USA, the Netherlands, Belgium, England, Germany, Canada, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, and Indonesia.  Further action was to anticipate for a Join DVI Operation and any possible assistance toward a mass identification process by preparing antemortem data or the referal information from the family of those Indonesian in collaboration with Provincial DVI in Jakarta, North Sumatera, Central Java, and Bali, including collecting the DNA reference sample from the closest relatives, medical and dental records from the family doctor or dentist,  any specific physical characteristic,  and fingerprints from Police and Civil Registration.

A week later when it was confirmed that the crash site were found in the eastern area of Ukraine, there was a immediate request from the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia to The Head of Indonesian National Police to dispatch Indonesia DVI team to join the International DVI Operation in  Hilversum the Netherland to identify the entire victims of the MH17 crash.  Carrying logistics and antemortem information from Indonesia, the small DVI Team consist of 6 personnels departed Jakarta to Hilversum, where they had to cooperate with an international DVI Community from Australia, Belgium, England, Germany, Indonesia, Malaysia, New Zealand, and the Netherlands, headed by Dutch DVI Commander under the supervision of Interpol DVI to run one of the best International DVI Operation. There, it proved that the anticipation and the preparedness really helped DVI Indonesia to contribute in accelerating the completion of the whole DVI Operation, and won praises from the INTERPOL, when the speed of the processes and effectiveness to precede the confirmation of the crash itself really pleases the families of the Indonesian victims and assured them of the true identification and fast repatriation of their love one.

The Future
As one of 12 representatives sitting as the Board Member of Interpol Steering Group on DVI, Indonesia keep working in establishing its capability on DVI, creating breakthrough to increase its performance in public service, and become a simple model on how a developing country with a very limited resources to develop its DVI capacity.

Therefore, Indonesian DVI since the year 2010 commenced National and International DVI programs at the JCLEC (Police Academy) to campaign for the establishment of DVI capability in the regions, gathered Medico Legal Institutions from Islamic countries, Asia Pacific and ASEAN regions, and under the facilitation of the INTERPOL dan the ASEANAPOL trying to establish a hub for any DVI training and operation that could help member countries in the region.

In line with the DVI works, Indonesian National DVI Committee will manage a new unit called  Missing Person and Unidentified Body or MPUB Unit with the objectives of receiving, storing, displaying of data, and making it available as matching data with reported missing persons and unidentified dead bodies over the country jurisdiction, through the operational system within the Police Medical and strengthened by online system that can be accessed by law enforcement, medical, and the public in general through websites, emails, social media, text message, and telephone, toll free.

Reports of missing persons or unidentified bodies will be incorporated into a database system on a national server that consist two big folders named as Missing Person Database containing information that can be accessed by law enforcement officers, media, and public to report the missing person,  and Unidentified Body Database that containing information that can be accessed by law enforcement officers, doctors, or any forensic institutions to submit their finding of any unidentified body, that already set in a certain format to comply with Interpol DVI system.

While the information on missing persons or unidentified dead bodies entering the system, it will automatically perform benchmarking process to search for a match or similarity, and the result will goes to the reconsiliation team to assure its accountability from scientific and legal aspects.

Finally, DVI Operation again a multi dimensional and multiaspects operation that can not be accomplished by a single expert or institution, hopefully through facilitation of expert and police association in the region and interegion such as ASEANAPOL and INTERPOL, could encourage the formation of the new era of international cooperation on DVI for the sake of Humanitarian efforts and Law enforcement.

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38 Setia: DVI Indonesia an Overview
DVI Indonesia an Overview
38 Setia
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