Wednesday, January 15, 2014

1) Melanesians respect RI’s sovereignty

1) Melanesians respect RI’s  sovereignty
2) Watch this video : Foreign Minister of Melanesian countries had blocked by Papuan Students in Jakarta
3) Vanuatu defends boycott of MSG mission


1) Melanesians respect RI’s  sovereignty
Ina Parlina and Margareth S. Aritonang, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Headlines | Thu, January 16 2014, 8:52 AM
Men in black: President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (right) meets with Melanesia Spearhead Group (MSG) delegates at his office in Jakarta on Wednesday. The dignitaries are in Indonesia on the invitation of the Indonesian government, which intends to boost economic and development cooperation with the Pacific countries. (Antara/Andika Wahyu)

Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) member nations that have often voiced concerns over alleged human rights abuses in Papua said on Wednesday they fully respected Indonesia’s sovereignty.

High-ranking representatives of MSG nations made the comment after they witnessed the latest developments in the country’s most remote and backward provinces of Papua and West Papua, earlier this week.

The move increased speculation the group may oppose a membership bid into the bloc by a West Papua pro-independence group, the West Papua National Coalition for Liberation (WPNCL).

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono received the Papua New Guinea (PNG) Foreign Minister Rimbink Pato, Fiji’s Ratu Inoke Kubuabola, Solomon Islands’ Clay Forau Soalaoi and Yvon Faua, an envoy from the Socialist National Liberation Front (FLNKS), a pro-independence group from French-ruled New Caledonia, in a courtesy call meeting at the State Palace.

In a joint statement, Indonesia and the MSG concluded they “supported respective sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity and the principle of non-interference in each other’s internal affairs, consistent with the Charter of the United Nations”.

Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa, who attended the meeting, said the final statement produced during the visit had emphasized the fundamental principle of cooperation between Indonesia and the MSG countries.

“Mutual respect of sovereignty and territory is a fundamental principle of cooperation,” said Marty.

Melanesia is a subregion of Oceania extending from the western end of the Pacific Ocean to the Arafura Sea and eastward to Fiji.

Indonesia had invited the officials to Papua and Jakarta to receive briefings on development in Papua between Jan. 11 and 16, a move that could be seen as a way of obtaining international support for the country’s sovereignty following the bid by the WPNCL.

The WPNCL is pushing for independence from Indonesia and sees membership of the MSG as a step toward international recognition, while human rights watchdogs have often criticized Indonesia for state violence against Papuans.

In June last year, an MSG summit meeting deferred the WPNCL bid by at least six months, saying it was important to engage with Indonesia.

They agreed to establish a consultation with Indonesia and welcomed the invitation to visit the country, although they also concluded that the group fully supported the rights of the people of West Papua to self-determination and mentioned concerns about human rights violations.

During Wednesday’s press conference, PNG’s Pato said the delegation had formed “a definite opinion” on their findings and would forward it to the MSG leadership, who he said would then “determine what is to be done in relation to a certain application the MSG group has received”.

Yet, the call and visit were made without the presence of Vanuatu’s representative.

Several foreign media have reported that Vanuatu’s absence was due to the argument that the visit would not give the delegation the opportunity to meet civil society groups in West Papua.

Vanuatu, which harbors several high-ranking Free Papua Movement (OPM) officials, has also internationalized the Papuan human rights issue by discussing it in the UN General Assembly last September.

Without revealing the reason behind Vanuatu’s absence, Pato however said that Vanuatu would be informed of the results of the visit before MSG leaders reached a decision on the WPNCL membership application.

Pato also refused to reveal his recommendation. “Unfortunately, I cannot say because I will preempt the decision of the leaders,” he said.

When asked about the human rights issue, Pato said: “I have not seen the evidence. As I’ve said, we have a clear mandate and we have conducted an investigation. The report will go back to the leadership in terms of the mandate that we’ve come to exercise and our mission has been completed.”
2) Watch this video : Foreign Minister of Melanesian countries had blocked by Papuan Students in Jakarta
Jayapura, 16/1 (Jubi) – A video duration 1 minute 16 seconds about an action by Papuan students to blocked the delegates of the Melanesian countries have circulated on youtube . This video shows the panic of the Indonesian Foreign Ministry staff and hotel management are assigned to bring the Foreign Minister of Melanesian countries to met the President of Indonesia.
Papuan students in Java and Bali successfully blocked a convoy of Minister of Foreign Affairs of Fiji , Solomon Islands , Papua New Guinea and some staff of Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, precisely when the group will leave the Hotel Borobudur , Wednesday ( 15/1 ) morning , to meet Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yoedhoyono .
In this video, Papuan students have expressed their disappointment to the Foreign Minister of Melanesian countries as follows :
1 . Students Papua disappointed because the MSG’s representatives did not meet the people of West Papua, religious leaders , traditional leaders , and pro- independence Papuan activists, included representatives of WPNCL in West Papua .
2 . Students reject the signatories of collective agreement between Melanesian countries and Foreign Minister of Indonesia, which is likely to reject membership of WPNCL in MSG.
3 . Students want a direct dialogue with the Foreign Minister of Melanesian Countries to convey the attitude and demands that WPCNL to be accepted as a member of the MSG.
4 . Students questioned the visit schedule of Foreign Minister of Melanesian countries in Papua. The schedule initialed the duration of visit  was two days but the visit only for 8 hours in Jayapura, And the Foreign Minister of Melanesian countries had evacuated by military helicopters to Sentani Airport before left Jayapura in the same day.
5 . Students also want a dialogue with the Foreign Minister of Melanesian countries to convey the demand of the people of West Papua in matter of  self-determination . (Jubi/Victor Mambor)

3) Vanuatu defends boycott of MSG mission

Updated 16 January 2014, 12:05 AEST
Vanuatu's Foreign Minister Edward Natapei says the Melanesian Spearhead Group is split over the issue of membership for the West Papua National Coalition for Liberation.
He says it is now unlikely the Vanuatu-based West Papuan separatist group will be admitted as a full member. Last week Mr Natapei boycotted an MSG foreign ministers mission to Indonesia, saying it's agenda had been hijacked by Jakarta. But he says Vanuatu won't be giving up on its quest to have the West Papuans admitted.
Presenter: Hiliare Bule
Edward Natapei, Vanuatu's Foreign Minister
NATAPEI: Soon after the meeting, the MSG meeting in New Caledonia, we had actually made it very clear to the MSG leaders and the government of Indonesia that we were going to participate only if the visit involved civil society in West Papua, and if in the visit we will be given the opportunity to speak to civil society, the church leaders and people who actually were concerned about human rights violations in West Papua. So we had made that clear to the Indonesian authorities, and to the MSG Secretariat. Just one day before we were to depart Vanuatu to travel to Indonesia, we got the program of the visit, which neglected, it did not involve a meeting with civil society, it did not involve a meeting with the West Papuan people, the leadership in West Papua, who are concerned about human rights and who could give us more information about the West Papua National Coalition for Liberation that is based in Vanuatu. We realised that in fact it was being hijacked by the government of Indonesia to work on another issue, which was to promote economic ties and development cooperation with the government of Indonesia. We felt that we were going to fail in the mission.
BULE: Do you think that it is necessary to plan for another visit?
NATAPEI: I do not believe it's going to be worth trying to organise another meeting to Indonesia. Perhaps another alternative or another option would be to actually organise to meet with the leaders of West Papua at a different venue.
BULE: There were also some MSG countries who were not sharing the same view as Vanuatu. Do you think that MSG is still one on the issue of the independence of West Papua?
NATAPEI: I think it is going to be difficult this time round basically because after the MSG meeting in New Caledonia there were some other visits organised by Indonesia where they invited the head of the government of Fiji, head of the government of Papua New Guinea, in fact Papua New Guinea Prime Minister was in Indonesia during the MSG meeting in New Caledonia, and much later the Prime Minister of the Solomon Islands was also in Indonesia. Now Vanuatu is going to still push ahead for the admittance of the West Papua National Coalition for Liberation to be admitted as a member of the MSG, but considering that the three leaders of MSG have been in Indonesia and they have entered into some agreements with the government of Indonesia, I believe it's going to be a lot more difficult this time to try and push this agenda forward. But that is not to say that Vanuatu will give up, Vanuatu will continue to push for membership of the WPNCL in the MSG, membership of the MSG.
BULE: It has … West Papuan was arrested during the visit of the MSG ministerial meeting in West Papua?
NATAPEI: Yes we are also very concerned about that. We believe that the reason West Papuans were put on this demonstration was basically because they knew that the visit was not going to achieve what the MSG had set out to achieve. And so they are protesting because they are not involved in the visit and they were not allowed to meet the MSG leaders during the visit.

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