Wednesday, January 7, 2015

1) Former top spy appointed to lead troubled Freeport Indonesia

2) Call for NZ action on West Papua
3) Papua-PNG border rife with  smuggling

4) With Kalla, Jokowi can  seize rights momentum


1) Former top spy appointed  to lead troubled Freeport  Indonesia 
Raras Cahyafitri, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Business | Wed, January 07 2015, 6:56 PM - 
Copper and gold miner PT Freeport Indonesia (PTFI), a subsidiary of US-based giant mining firm Freeport McMoRan Inc., has appointed a former military officer and the country's spy agency chief as its new president director.
Freeport Indonesia said on Wednesday that it had installed Maroef Sjamsoeddin as the new president director, replacing Rozik Soetjipto.
Maroef is a retired Air Vice Marshal from the Indonesian Air Force and served as the deputy chief of the State Intelligence Agency (BIN) from 2011-2014. Maroef is also a younger brother of Sjafrie Sjamsoeddin, a retired Army lieutenant general and former defense deputy minister during Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono's presidency.
The newly appointed Maroef said he expected to cooperate with all stakeholders as the company sought to execute its long-term investment strategy in Papua.
“This is an exciting time for PTFI as we build new mines in Papua that will provide benefits to our employees, the local community, the government of Indonesia and all stakeholders for decades to come,” Maroef said in a statement.
Freeport Indonesia has implemented the change in its top management while the company is at a crucial time in the drafting of an amendment to its contract of work with the government.
Last year, the company and the Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry's directorate general for minerals and coal signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) that highlighted principal agreements regarding the adjustment of six issues from its previous contract of work. The MoU must be followed by a definitive amended contract of work.
The drafting of the contract of work should be completed within six months, the deadline for which will fall on Jan. 24. However, to date, the process is still ongoing. (nvn)(++++)
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2) Call for NZ action on West Papua

Updated at 8:38 pm on 7 January 2015

West Papua Action Auckland is urging the government to do more to protect people from ongoing security force violence in Indonesia's Papua region.
Spokesperson Maire Leadbeater said Indonesia was reponsible for decades of human rights abuses and the West Papuan people wanted self-determination.
She said New Zealand was a regional leader and was failing to take a stand against what was happening to its Pacific neighbours.
"We're on the Security Council, we've got high international profile and to some extent we are seen as a country with an independent foreign policy," she said.
"We have these opportunities that we seem to just let slip in favour of quiet diplomacy and good relations with Indonesia."
Ms Leadbeater said New Zealand should sever all military ties with Indonesia.
"Our military ties with Indonesia are not great. They are very small so it wouldn't be a huge issue really, just to cut them off altogether as a strong statement of our disapproval for the ongoing abuses committed by the Indonesian military and their failure to call to account those responsible for decades of documented human rights abuses against the West Papuan people."
The West Papua situation made international headlines in mid-December when Indonesian authorities opened fire on a peaceful protest in Papua's Paniai, killing five school students and injuring 20 others.
Ms Leadbeater said there must be an independent investigation into those events.
"The government should be openly, in a megaphone kind of way, calling for a truly independent investigation of the events that took place in Paniai. That's the kind of thing I would like to see them do much more strongly."
3) Papua-PNG border rife with  smuggling
The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Archipelago | Wed, January 07 2015, 7:44 AM - 
Border areas between Indonesia and Papua New Guinea (PNG), especially Merauke, Papua, and Daru, PNG, are prone to smuggling, says a local military commander.
Merauke naval base commander Brig. Gen. Buyung Lalana told Antara news agency on Tuesday that the areas were prone to smuggling due to limited equipment, such as motorboats.
The smugglers, added Buyung, were mostly Indonesians and smuggled goods from PNG, usually in the form of marine resources, such as sea cucumbers and fish stomach as well as marijuana.
“Many Indonesians enter PNG to buy marine yields from PNG residents as they are lured by the price, which reaches millions, such as for sea cucumber,” said Buyung.
He added that his command was only able to monitor the traffic of people from Indonesia and PNG if they reported at the Torasi border crossing manned by a platoon of marines.(***)
4) With Kalla, Jokowi can  seize rights momentum

Hafid Abbas, Jakarta | Opinion | Wed, January 07 2015, 10:53 AM - See more at:
The agenda of President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo and Vice President Jusuf Kalla called Nawa Cita indicates their solid commitment to promoting human rights for all citizens. In particular, Kalla’s background provides a great opportunity to address human rights under this administration.

As part of the promotion of economic rights, Kalla, as vice president from 2004-2009, succeeded in converting the use of kerosene and firewood into gas.

Kalla was also among the prominent figures who promoted and protected our cultural and natural heritage. To preserve East Nusa Tenggara’s natural heritage in his capacity as the Komodo Island Ambassador, Kalla succeeded in getting Komodo Island named as one of the New Seven Natural Wonders in a tough global contest. As a potential second Bali among tourist destinations, the new global status of Komodo could improve the lives of the 23 percent of the population of East Nusa Tenggara who currently live below the poverty line.

To restore civil and political rights, Kalla mediated between the warring parties in the communal strife in Maluku and Central Sulawesi, where sectarian conflict in Poso claimed some 960 lives and displaced 80,000 residents. Heavier losses and damage were incurred during the years of bloodshed in Maluku.

Furthermore, in Aceh, in the course of some 30 years of conflict, no fewer than 50,000 were killed, including civilians, police and military personnel as well as fighters of the Free Aceh Movement (GAM), equivalent to 4 to 5 deaths per day for three decades. On Dec. 26, 2004, the earthquake and tsunami that devastated Aceh left over 200,000 people dead and missing and more than 500,000 were displaced.

Under such tragic conditions, Kalla with the approval of then president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, initiated peace talks with GAM leaders in Sweden, which led to a peaceful agreement. The mediator Martti Ahtisaari was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts in this and other instances of conflict resolution.

In the promotion and protection of civil and political rights, especially the right to life, Kalla, as chair of the Indonesian Red Cross, also attempted to reduce tensions between Hindus and Muslims in Myanmar. On Sept. 19, 2011, in Phnom Penh, Cambodian King Norodom Sihamoni made him an officer of the Royal Order of Sahametrei in recognition of his achievement as a peacemaker, especially in the Asia Pacific region.

With such a track record, Kalla and Jokowi shoulder high expectations to resolve past human rights cases through judicial and non-judicial means, especially those that have been recommended by state bodies such as the National Commission for Human Rights following the results of government-appointed fact-finding teams.

The cases that should be their first priority are those related to the 1965-1966 bloodshed, the mysterious shootings of 1982-1985, the Talangsari killings in Lampung in 1989, the forced disappearances of 1997-1998, the May 1998 riots, the shootings at Trisakti, Semanggi I and II the same year, and the Wasior and Wamena cases in 2003 in Papua.

There should be no reason to preserve the dark past in its status quo, without any resolution, in our modern democracy.

The President has at least started addressing minority-rights protection, a second matter of urgency, including the continued victimization of Ahmadiyah followers. A third human rights priority should address agrarian and land conflicts, including tensions among local indigenous communities with regard to their rights in forest areas.

Fourth is the urgent need to reform the National Police, corporations and local governments as they are the most frequently reported actors behind human rights violations all across Indonesia.

Fifth, the state should also address comprehensively all human rights cases in Papua if it wishes to prevent internationalization of this issue.

A sixth item on the agenda is the improvement of the conditions of some 6 million Indonesian migrant workers around the world. Annually they contribute over US$10 billion, but some 92,000 have legal problems and 278 of them are facing death sentences, mostly in Malaysia and Saudi Arabia.

A seventh priority is the promotion of economic, social and cultural rights, especially the right to quality education. Our educational standards are now among the lowest in the world, equal to Syria, Palestine, Oman, Ghana and Botswana, although the funding given to education accounts for 20 percent of the total national budget.

Any reluctance and delay in addressing these human rights issues will lead Jokowi’s Nawa Cita agenda to remain a pipedream, at the cost of the nation’s level of civilization.
There should be no reason to preserve the dark past in its status quo, without any resolution.
The writer is the current chair of the National Commission for Human Rights and president of the Southeast Asia National Human Rights Institutions Forum (SEANF) 2014.

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