Friday, June 27, 2014

1) MSG defers to Jakata on West Papua bid

1) MSG defers to Jakata on West Papua bid
2) Dutch New Guinea veterans 'angry' over flag ban
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1) MSG defers to Jakata on West Papua bid

Originally aired on Dateline Pacific, Friday 27 June 2014

Melanesian Spearhead Group leaders meeting in Port Moresby have indicated that the West Papua National Coalition for Liberation's bid to join the group will have to return to the drawing board.

Audio duration:  3′ 23″ 

TRANSCRIPT

Melanesian Spearhead Group leaders meeting in Port Moresby have indicated that the West Papua National Coalition for Liberation's bid to join the group will have to return to the drawing board.
The coalition lodged its application over a year ago.
The MSG had postponed its decision on the application pending the report from an MSG Foreign Ministers fact-finding mission to Papua.
Johnny Blades reports:
MSG leaders have indicated that West Papuans would need to re-apply for membership as an "inclusive and united" group. The response to a membership bid which captured international attention seems to reflect the influence on Melanesian governments of Indonesia which itself enjoys observer status at the MSG. PNG's Prime Minister Peter O'Neill says the West Papuan group would have to consult with Jakarta in future about applying to join the MSG.
PETER O'NEILL: We feel that it must be representative of all Melanesians that are living in Indonesia, and that the application be made in consultation with the Indonesian government just as we have done with FLNKS membership in the MSG.
West Papuans have long argued that their case gument for membership is similar to the FLNKS organisation, representing the indigenous Kanaks of New Caledonia, which joined the MSG years ago despite not being an independent country. A spokesman for the coalition, Andy Ayamiseba, points out that the FLNKS didn't have to ask permission of France when it became a member of the MSG. He questions the merits of consulting with Jakarta when he says it has attempted to sabotage the coalition's bid all along. Mr Ayamiseba also distinguishes the West Papuan position from other Melanesians in Indonesia.
ANDY AYAMISEBA: We have nothing to do with the Malukans. Our fight is in regard to our right that has been manipulated during the Act of Free Choice. We don't speak for the malukans, we don't speak for the Timorese.
Andy Ayamiseba says the MSG Foreign Ministers fact-finding mission, which Vanuatu boycotted, didn't even get close to hearing from the right people.
ANDY AYAMISEBA: This report of the Foreign Ministers is totally misleading.. totally misleading. I mean, how could they take the report that we are not representing the majority when it's never met with any one of the representative groups or even civil society.
Although the coalition presented documents of support from over seventy representative groups in Indonesia's Papua region, questions linger over its validity as a representative group. An organisation calling itself the Federal Republic of West Papua, while affiliated with the Coalition, claims it is the representative body for West Papuans. Melkias Okoka is the media liaison from this organisation's Department of Foreign Affairs.
MELKIAS OKOKA: WPNCL is part of the Federal Republic of West Papua. But I think last year, it made a mistake by applying for MSG membership under its own name instead of the Federal Republic of West Papua. So I think that is the problem.
The Federal Republic of West Papua's top leadership remains incarcerated in an Indonesian prison for declaring independence.
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2) Dutch New Guinea veterans 'angry' over flag ban

Updated at 2:31 pm today


The Free West Papua Campaign says Dutch New Guinea veterans are angry they have been stopped from carrying the West Papuan Morning Star flag during a a march this week in The Hague.
The Netherlands celebrates National Veterans Day on Saturday and veterans will march through the city but for the first time in 10 years New Guinea veterans will not be allowed to carry the flag.
The campaign's coordinator in the Netherlands says the Dutch Veterans Day Committee is apparently responsible for banning the flag and the Government has denied any involvement.
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