Sunday, May 5, 2013

Summary of events in West Papua for April –beginning of May 2013


Australia West Papua Association (Sydney)
PO Box 28, Spit Junction, NSW 2088


Summary of events in West Papua for April –beginning of May 2013 
1st May
There was a crackdown by the security forces on peaceful rallies held by civil society organisations in West Papua to protest the handover of West Papua by UNTEA to Indonesian administration. Fifty years ago on the 1 May in 1963, the United Nations Temporary Executive Authority (UNTEA) transferred administration of the Dutch colony of Netherlands New Guinea to Indonesia. From the moment Indonesia took over the administration from UNTEA, the oppression of the West Papuan people began and 50 years later the oppression continues and so does the struggle of the West Papuan people for self-determination During the crackdown two people were killed and three seriously wounded in the town of Sorong. In Timika fifteen people were arrested for simply raising their national flag, The Morning Star and six were arrested in Biak. In the town of Fakfak, the police hauled down the Morning Star flag which had been raised in a local school. Local people were intimidated by the security forces during these rallies. http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/news/police-separatists-clash-on-50th-anniversary-of-integration-of-papua/
NGO groups around the world condemned the crackdown and The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay expressed stating,  “These latest incidents are unfortunate examples of the ongoing suppression of freedom of expression and excessive use of force in Papua,” and. “I urge the Government of Indonesia to allow peaceful protest and hold accountable those involved in abuses.”http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=44812&Cr=indonesia&Cr1=#.UYWfBJXWE5Q AWPA also wrote to Senator Carr re the crackdown at http://awpasydneynews.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/media-release-2-may-2013-awpa-letter-to.html and previously concerning statements from the security forces leading up to the 1 May http://awpasydneynews.blogspot.com.au/2013/04/1-awpa-letter-to-sen-bob-carr.html   Other groups raising concern included West Papua Action Auckland, the Foundation Pro Papua in the Netherlands and the Papuan peace negotiators team. The East Timor and Indonesia Action Network (ETAN) and West Papua Advocacy Team (WPAT) in the US strongly urged the U.S. government to condemn the unwarranted assault by Indonesian government security forces on peaceful May 1 demonstrations in West Papua. Some photos of the rallies on the KNPB web page http://knpbnews.com/blog/archives/1710

MSG
West Papuan representatives have been lobbying the MSG in support of their application for membership. A report by Johnny Blades of RNZI at http://www.rnzi.com/pages/news.php?op=read&id=75172

Papuans behind bars 
Papuans Behind Bars, launched in April 2013, is an online resource about political prisoners in West Papua. This site aims to raise awareness about Papuan political prisoners so that nobody is forgotten. Many of the prisoners have suffered arbitrary arrest, violence, abuse, torture, unfair trials, intimidation and neglect. Papuans Behind Bars is a collective project initiated by Papuan civil society groups working together as the Civil Society Coalition to Uphold Law and Human Rights in Papua. It is a grassroots initiative and represents a broad collaboration between lawyers, human rights groups, adat groups, activists, journalists and individuals in West Papua, as well as Jakarta-based NGOs and international solidarity groups.  www.papuansbehindbars.org

New Report by Tapol
A new report was released by TAPOL, ‘No political prisoners? The suppression of political protest in West Papua,‘ documents the cases of 40 detainees who were known to be in prison at the end of March 2013, challenging the government’s claim that there are no political prisoners in West Papua, but only criminals who have broken the law. The report at http://tapol.org/sites/default/files/sites/default/files/pdfs/Suppression%20of%20political%20protest%20in%20West%20Papua.pdf

Campaign office opened in Oxford
A new campaign office for the Free West Papua campaign was opened in Oxford by Benny Wenda http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/news/10387703.West_Papua_s_fight_for_freedom_gets_city_base/ The British Ambassador to Indonesia Mark Canning responded to the opening of the office stating that the “UK government did not support the activities of the separatist Free Papua Movement”. 

The Ambassador issued the statement following a plan by the Indonesian government to summon him to clarify whether his government was supporting Papua’s secession from Indonesia by allowing UK-based Papuan exile Benny Wenda to set up the office. 
“The views of the UK government are well known. We regard Papua as part of this country and want it to enjoy the same peace and prosperity as other parts of this nation,” Canning said in a press release on Saturday. http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2013/05/05/papua-a-part-indonesia.html


Australian and Indonesian ” dialogue
The second annual “2+2” dialogue between the defense and foreign ministers of Australia and Indonesia on Wednesday reaffirmed the good, comprehensive and strategic cooperation, particularly in the defense and military sectors, between the two neighboring countries. http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2013/04/04/australia-indonesia-boost-security-defense-ties.html  Letter in Jakarta Posthttp://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2013/04/04/your-letters-papua-aspect-ri-aussie-ties.html During his visit to Indonesia, Senator Carr announced that Australia would provide an additional $99 million in funding over the next two years towards a poverty reduction program in Indonesia. The National Program for Community Empowerment provides grants for education, health and infrastructure."Almost 120 million Indonesians, nearly half the population, live on less than $2 a day," Senator Carr said during a visit to the Manarul Huda Madrasah, an Islamic school in south Jakarta. The new funding takes Australia's total support for the empowerment program to $314 million. It will also contribute to targeted support in remote villages in the provinces of Papua and West Papua, including training for local school graduates in basic engineering skills to build village infrastructure. http://www.theaustralian.com.au/higher-education/no-aussie-funds-going-to-radicals-jakarta/story-e6frgcjx-1226612677940

NZ Papua is ‘a part of Indonesia’
The Jakarta Post reported that the New Zealand government had allocated Rp 20 million (US$ 2 million) in aid for the Papua Community Policing program, which is slated to commence in September. It is a three-year program in which members of the NZ police will run a Training for Trainers (TOT) program to work on
community-based approaches for Indonesian Police officers in Papua. However,  RNZI reported there were doubts about the program.  The Attorney-General, Chris Finlayson, speaking on behalf of the Foreign Minister, suggested the reports were premature. “On behalf of the minister, the media reporting in the Jakarta Post, which I assume the member is referring to, is wrong. The minister has received no advice on the design, timing and funding of the project. There will be an announcement when a decision is made.” Chris Finlayson. http://www.rnzi.com/pages/news.php?op=read&id=75376


Urgent Action
The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) released an urgent action concerning the detention of two activists by the Sausapor Sub-District Police in Papua. The activists were taken from their house to the police station and were being interrogated in relation to an investigation they conducted regarding the death of villagers in Tambrauw Regency due to the lack of medical treatment. It was reported that the two activists as well as others who were engaged in the investigation were previously followed by police officers. http://www.humanrights.asia/news/urgent-appeals/AHRC-UAC-062-2013          


In brief
US envoy meets Neles Tebay to discuss peace in Papua
 May 3 2013 Jakarta (ANTARA News) - US Ambassador Scot Marciel met on Thursday with Neles Tebay, the leader of the Papua Peace Network and recent winner of the Tji Hak-Soon Peace and Justice Award, according to the US embassy here on Friday.  The two have met regularly, both in Papua and Jakarta, to discuss developments in Papua, including shared aspirations for peace and security in Papua.  The U.S. Government recognizes the territorial integrity of Indonesia, with Papua as an integral part.  The U.S. Government also encourages development and dialogue that go to the heart of settling long-standing grievances.(*)Editor: Heru http://www.antaranews.com/en/news/88711/us-envoy-meets-neles-tebay-to-discuss-peace-in-papua



Workers at Freeport projects end three-day strike
Fri, May 3 2013 14:19 | 40 Views
Timika, Papua (ANTARA News) - Around 1,500 workers of three local contractors for PT Freeport Indonesia in Papua, resumed work on Friday ending a three day strike. "Mobilization of the workers will start this morning by the three contractors after the agreement on Thursday with the contractors and representatives of PT Freeport," a local union leader Irwanto Hasan told Antara new agency here on Friday.  Leaders of the local units of Indonesian labor union (SPSI) had reached an agreement on pay hike with the managements of PT Jasti Pravita, PT Osato Seike and PT Srikandi Mitra Karya (JOS), which are carrying out projects owned by the US company which has big copper and gold mines in Papua.  Irwanto said part or around 650 workers would be transported to Tembagapura and the rest to LIP Kuala Kencana and the port town of Portsite Amamapare, the places where they had worked for the contractors.  Irwanto said under the agreement, the minimum hourly pay is Rp11,850 calculated on minimum monthly pay of Rp2,050,000 on regular time. They pay agreement is retroactive as from January 2013, he said.  Overtime pay is Rp13,563 per hour, he said, adding the difference in pay until April would be paid in May.  The pay increased by 3 to 6 percent depending on the duration they have worked for the companies, Irwanto said  It was also agreed that the companies may not take disciplinary action against striking workers and reduce allowance and other rights entitled to them earlier, he said.  The workers, therefore, will fully receive pay for regular time of seven hours per day during the strike from April 30 to May 2.(*)Editor: Heru http://www.antaranews.com/en/news/88714/workers-at-freeport-projects-end-three-day-strike


Most HIV patients in Papua co-infected with TB
The Jakarta Post, Jayapura | Archipelago | Wed, April 24 2013, 3:11 PM
An official said Wednesday that around 60 percent of HIV-infected people in Papua are known to have also suffered from tuberculosis (TB) and that up to 40 percent of TB patients in the province are also HIV-positive. Papua health agency head, Yosep Rinta, said in Jayapura that such a high number of HIV patients co-infected with TB was caused by a continuous decline of the strength of their immune system so that they were easily infected with the TB bacteria. He said that many TB patients had never truly had a cure despite ongoing medical treatment and after a thorough examination, it was later found that they had contracted HIV. Promiscuity or risky sexual behavior was the leading cause of high HIV prevalence in Papua. With a decline in the body’s immunity, they got TB infection easily, he went on. “HIV patients can be co-infected with a wide vary of illnesses; yet, TB is the most common illness among HIV-positive people,” said Rinta as quoted by Antara news agency. TB patients who are also HIV-positive will receive not only drugs commonly used to treat TB but also anti-retroviral (ARV) therapy to increase the strength of their immune system. “HIV-infected patients must take the ARV drugs every day for the rest of their life,” said Rinta. Unfortunately, only 2,091 out of 13,726 HIV-infected patients in Papua are taking the ARVs. (ebf) http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2013/04/24/most-hiv-patients-papua-co-infected-with-tb.html

Lack of Care in Papua Proves Deadly
Jayapura. Sixty-one people have reportedly died in the past three months in the Samenage district of Yahukimo, Papua, due to the lack of health-care facilities.


Reports/opinion pieces/letters etc.
They're taking our kids West Papua's youth are being removed to Islamic religious schools in Java for "re-education"


“He put electric shock on me”: a glimpse of the persistent, widespread practice of torture in Papua


The ‘dirty secret’ of the region

Collective grief’ leads to dream of freedom


Papua under Indonesia: A fire in the husk


Autonomy plus
The Indonesian Government is hoping an update version will be accepted by the West Papuan people. A Radio Australia report at



Your letters: Papua’s May Day
Summary of events in West Papua for April –beginning of 
1st May
There was a crackdown by the security forces on peaceful rallies held by civil society organisations in West Papua to protest the handover of West Papua by UNTEA to Indonesian administration. Fifty years ago on the 1 May in 1963, the United Nations Temporary Executive Authority (UNTEA) transferred administration of the Dutch colony of Netherlands New Guinea to Indonesia. From the moment Indonesia took over the administration from UNTEA, the oppression of the West Papuan people began and 50 years later the oppression continues and so does the struggle of the West Papuan people for self-determination During the crackdown two people were killed and three seriously wounded in the town of Sorong. In Timika fifteen people were arrested for simply raising their national flag, The Morning Star and six were arrested in Biak. In the town of Fakfak, the police hauled down the Morning Star flag which had been raised in a local school. Local people were intimidated by the security forces during these rallies. http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/news/police-separatists-clash-on-50th-anniversary-of-integration-of-papua/
NGO groups around the world condemned the crackdown and The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay expressed stating,  “These latest incidents are unfortunate examples of the ongoing suppression of freedom of expression and excessive use of force in Papua,” and. “I urge the Government of Indonesia to allow peaceful protest and hold accountable those involved in abuses.”http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=44812&Cr=indonesia&Cr1=#.UYWfBJXWE5Q AWPA also wrote to Senator Carr re the crackdown at http://awpasydneynews.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/media-release-2-may-2013-awpa-letter-to.html and previously concerning statements from the security forces leading up to the 1 May http://awpasydneynews.blogspot.com.au/2013/04/1-awpa-letter-to-sen-bob-carr.html   Other groups raising concern included West Papua Action Auckland, the Foundation Pro Papua in the Netherlands and the Papuan peace negotiators team. The East Timor and Indonesia Action Network (ETAN) and West Papua Advocacy Team (WPAT) in the US strongly urged the U.S. government to condemn the unwarranted assault by Indonesian government security forces on peaceful May 1 demonstrations in West Papua. Some photos of the rallies on the KNPB web page http://knpbnews.com/blog/archives/1710

MSG
West Papuan representatives have been lobbying the MSG in support of their application for membership. A report by Johnny Blades of RNZI at http://www.rnzi.com/pages/news.php?op=read&id=75172

Papuans behind bars 
Papuans Behind Bars, launched in April 2013, is an online resource about political prisoners in West Papua. This site aims to raise awareness about Papuan political prisoners so that nobody is forgotten. Many of the prisoners have suffered arbitrary arrest, violence, abuse, torture, unfair trials, intimidation and neglect. Papuans Behind Bars is a collective project initiated by Papuan civil society groups working together as the Civil Society Coalition to Uphold Law and Human Rights in Papua. It is a grassroots initiative and represents a broad collaboration between lawyers, human rights groups, adat groups, activists, journalists and individuals in West Papua, as well as Jakarta-based NGOs and international solidarity groups.  www.papuansbehindbars.org

New Report by Tapol
A new report was released by TAPOL, ‘No political prisoners? The suppression of political protest in West Papua,‘ documents the cases of 40 detainees who were known to be in prison at the end of March 2013, challenging the government’s claim that there are no political prisoners in West Papua, but only criminals who have broken the law. The report at http://tapol.org/sites/default/files/sites/default/files/pdfs/Suppression%20of%20political%20protest%20in%20West%20Papua.pdf

Campaign office opened in Oxford
A new campaign office for the Free West Papua campaign was opened in Oxford by Benny Wenda http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/news/10387703.West_Papua_s_fight_for_freedom_gets_city_base/ The British Ambassador to Indonesia Mark Canning responded to the opening of the office stating that the “UK government did not support the activities of the separatist Free Papua Movement”. 

The Ambassador issued the statement following a plan by the Indonesian government to summon him to clarify whether his government was supporting Papua’s secession from Indonesia by allowing UK-based Papuan exile Benny Wenda to set up the office. 
“The views of the UK government are well known. We regard Papua as part of this country and want it to enjoy the same peace and prosperity as other parts of this nation,” Canning said in a press release on Saturday. http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2013/05/05/papua-a-part-indonesia.html


Australian and Indonesian ” dialogue
The second annual “2+2” dialogue between the defense and foreign ministers of Australia and Indonesia on Wednesday reaffirmed the good, comprehensive and strategic cooperation, particularly in the defense and military sectors, between the two neighboring countries. http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2013/04/04/australia-indonesia-boost-security-defense-ties.html  Letter in Jakarta Posthttp://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2013/04/04/your-letters-papua-aspect-ri-aussie-ties.html During his visit to Indonesia, Senator Carr announced that Australia would provide an additional $99 million in funding over the next two years towards a poverty reduction program in Indonesia. The National Program for Community Empowerment provides grants for education, health and infrastructure."Almost 120 million Indonesians, nearly half the population, live on less than $2 a day," Senator Carr said during a visit to the Manarul Huda Madrasah, an Islamic school in south Jakarta. The new funding takes Australia's total support for the empowerment program to $314 million. It will also contribute to targeted support in remote villages in the provinces of Papua and West Papua, including training for local school graduates in basic engineering skills to build village infrastructure. http://www.theaustralian.com.au/higher-education/no-aussie-funds-going-to-radicals-jakarta/story-e6frgcjx-1226612677940

NZ Papua is ‘a part of Indonesia’
The Jakarta Post reported that the New Zealand government had allocated Rp 20 million (US$ 2 million) in aid for the Papua Community Policing program, which is slated to commence in September. It is a three-year program in which members of the NZ police will run a Training for Trainers (TOT) program to work on
community-based approaches for Indonesian Police officers in Papua. However,  RNZI reported there were doubts about the program.  The Attorney-General, Chris Finlayson, speaking on behalf of the Foreign Minister, suggested the reports were premature. “On behalf of the minister, the media reporting in the Jakarta Post, which I assume the member is referring to, is wrong. The minister has received no advice on the design, timing and funding of the project. There will be an announcement when a decision is made.” Chris Finlayson. http://www.rnzi.com/pages/news.php?op=read&id=75376


Urgent Action
The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) released an urgent action concerning the detention of two activists by the Sausapor Sub-District Police in Papua. The activists were taken from their house to the police station and were being interrogated in relation to an investigation they conducted regarding the death of villagers in Tambrauw Regency due to the lack of medical treatment. It was reported that the two activists as well as others who were engaged in the investigation were previously followed by police officers. http://www.humanrights.asia/news/urgent-appeals/AHRC-UAC-062-2013          


In brief
US envoy meets Neles Tebay to discuss peace in Papua
 May 3 2013 Jakarta (ANTARA News) - US Ambassador Scot Marciel met on Thursday with Neles Tebay, the leader of the Papua Peace Network and recent winner of the Tji Hak-Soon Peace and Justice Award, according to the US embassy here on Friday.  The two have met regularly, both in Papua and Jakarta, to discuss developments in Papua, including shared aspirations for peace and security in Papua.  The U.S. Government recognizes the territorial integrity of Indonesia, with Papua as an integral part.  The U.S. Government also encourages development and dialogue that go to the heart of settling long-standing grievances.(*)Editor: Heru http://www.antaranews.com/en/news/88711/us-envoy-meets-neles-tebay-to-discuss-peace-in-papua



Workers at Freeport projects end three-day strike
Fri, May 3 2013 14:19 | 40 Views
Timika, Papua (ANTARA News) - Around 1,500 workers of three local contractors for PT Freeport Indonesia in Papua, resumed work on Friday ending a three day strike. "Mobilization of the workers will start this morning by the three contractors after the agreement on Thursday with the contractors and representatives of PT Freeport," a local union leader Irwanto Hasan told Antara new agency here on Friday.  Leaders of the local units of Indonesian labor union (SPSI) had reached an agreement on pay hike with the managements of PT Jasti Pravita, PT Osato Seike and PT Srikandi Mitra Karya (JOS), which are carrying out projects owned by the US company which has big copper and gold mines in Papua.  Irwanto said part or around 650 workers would be transported to Tembagapura and the rest to LIP Kuala Kencana and the port town of Portsite Amamapare, the places where they had worked for the contractors.  Irwanto said under the agreement, the minimum hourly pay is Rp11,850 calculated on minimum monthly pay of Rp2,050,000 on regular time. They pay agreement is retroactive as from January 2013, he said.  Overtime pay is Rp13,563 per hour, he said, adding the difference in pay until April would be paid in May.  The pay increased by 3 to 6 percent depending on the duration they have worked for the companies, Irwanto said  It was also agreed that the companies may not take disciplinary action against striking workers and reduce allowance and other rights entitled to them earlier, he said.  The workers, therefore, will fully receive pay for regular time of seven hours per day during the strike from April 30 to May 2.(*)Editor: Heru http://www.antaranews.com/en/news/88714/workers-at-freeport-projects-end-three-day-strike


Most HIV patients in Papua co-infected with TB
The Jakarta Post, Jayapura | Archipelago | Wed, April 24 2013, 3:11 PM
An official said Wednesday that around 60 percent of HIV-infected people in Papua are known to have also suffered from tuberculosis (TB) and that up to 40 percent of TB patients in the province are also HIV-positive. Papua health agency head, Yosep Rinta, said in Jayapura that such a high number of HIV patients co-infected with TB was caused by a continuous decline of the strength of their immune system so that they were easily infected with the TB bacteria. He said that many TB patients had never truly had a cure despite ongoing medical treatment and after a thorough examination, it was later found that they had contracted HIV. Promiscuity or risky sexual behavior was the leading cause of high HIV prevalence in Papua. With a decline in the body’s immunity, they got TB infection easily, he went on. “HIV patients can be co-infected with a wide vary of illnesses; yet, TB is the most common illness among HIV-positive people,” said Rinta as quoted by Antara news agency. TB patients who are also HIV-positive will receive not only drugs commonly used to treat TB but also anti-retroviral (ARV) therapy to increase the strength of their immune system. “HIV-infected patients must take the ARV drugs every day for the rest of their life,” said Rinta. Unfortunately, only 2,091 out of 13,726 HIV-infected patients in Papua are taking the ARVs. (ebf) http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2013/04/24/most-hiv-patients-papua-co-infected-with-tb.html

Lack of Care in Papua Proves Deadly
Jayapura. Sixty-one people have reportedly died in the past three months in the Samenage district of Yahukimo, Papua, due to the lack of health-care facilities.


Reports/opinion pieces/letters etc.
They're taking our kids West Papua's youth are being removed to Islamic religious schools in Java for "re-education"


“He put electric shock on me”: a glimpse of the persistent, widespread practice of torture in Papua


The ‘dirty secret’ of the region

Collective grief’ leads to dream of freedom


Papua under Indonesia: A fire in the husk


Autonomy plus
The Indonesian Government is hoping an update version will be accepted by the West Papuan people. A Radio Australia report at



Your letters: Papua’s May Day


Ted talks
Jen Robinison and Benny Wenda spoke at the Ted talks at the Sydney Opera House The audience gave a standing ovation when Ms Robinson introduced West Papuan exiled independence leader Benny Wenda wearing national costume, including headdress.


Indon police allegedly detain and torture non-violent activist on Yapen Island
by westpapuamedia  Credible but unconfirmed reports have been received via sms by the West Papua Media team on Sunday, April 28, detailing Indonesian police behaviour of torture Yahya Bonai, a 33 year old, non-violent activist from Menawi village in the district of Angkaisera, east of Serui on Yapen Island.


Demo-Global Day of Action on Military Spending

Deaths Mark 50 Years Of West Papua Occupation

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