Wednesday, January 28, 2015

1) Three more members of armed group arrested in Jayapura

2) West Papuan front preparing Melanesian Spearhead Group application
3) Prosecutors pursue fugitive  Papua policeman with fat  bank account 
4) Deforestation may be ramping up in Papua, West Papua
5) AMP Ask PT Nabire New "Lift Foot" and Pull Military of Papua

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1) Three more members of armed  group arrested in Jayapura 
Nethy Dharma Somba, The Jakarta Post, Jayapura | Archipelago | Wed, January 28 2015, 4:13 PM - See more at: http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2015/01/28/three-more-members-armed-group-arrested-jayapura.html#sthash.j79WB2ef.dpuf
Three more members of an armed group led by Puron Wenda were arrested at a trade center in Jayapura, Papua, on Wednesday.
The three, identified as Rais Wenda, 27, Albert Jikwa, 29, and Fredi Kagoya, 15, were arrested as they traveled on a minibus in the Papua Trade Center in the city.
Papua Provincial Police spokesman Sr. Comr. Rudolf Patrige said the three were still undergoing an intensive interrogation in connection with their alleged involvement in recent bloody assaults in Timika and Jayapura.
“But the three are being grilled on their status as witnesses to the incidents,” he said.
The arrest of the three was conducted by the police following the arrest of two other members of the armed group in Wamena on Saturday.
Patrige denied spreading rumors that an Army soldier had been arrested for selling guns and ammunition to the armed group.
Meanwhile, Maj. Gen. Fransen G. Siahaan, chief of the Cendrawasih Military Command overseeing Papua and West Papua, also denied the rumors and said that only the three members of the armed group were arrested in a joint raid launched by the police and the military in the province. (rms)(+++)

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2) West Papuan front preparing Melanesian Spearhead Group application
Updated 27 January 2015, 17:59 AEDT
The executive members of the West Papua National Liberation Front are currently in the Vanuatu capital, Port Vila, preparing to submit an application to become a full member of the Melanesian Spearhead Group later this year.
The spokesman for the front, Benny Wenda, says that the members represent the different political groupings of West Papua.
On Monday, Vanuatu's prime minister Joe Natuman vowed to maintain support for New Caledonia and West Papua, saying the his country must assist them gain their independence.
Part of that strategy is attaining the long sought-after membership of the MSG.
Presenter: Hilaire Bule
Speaker: spokesman for the West Papua National Liberation Front in Vanuatu

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3) Prosecutors pursue fugitive  Papua policeman with fat  bank account 
Nethy Dharma Somba, The Jakarta Post, Jayapura | Archipelago | Wed, January 28 2015, 9:47 PM - See more at: 
The Sorong Prosecutor’s Office said it was continuing to pursue Labora Sitorus, a Raja Ampat Police precinct officer with a bank account containing Rp 1.5 trillion (US$119.8 million), who had fled after he was sentenced to 15 years in prison and ordered to pay a fine of Rp 5 billion.
“Sitorus has been included on the Sorong Prosecutor’s Office most wanted list [DPO] because he vanished when we wanted to execute the Supreme Court verdict after it ruled against his appeal,” Sorong Prosecutor’s Office head Damrah Muin told The Jakarta Post in Sorong, Papua, on Wednesday.
He said the Prosecutor’s Office issued the DPO after its officers, who were going to execute the court verdict, could not find Sitorus at either the Sorong Penitentiary or his home in Sorong.
Originally, the Sorong District Court sentenced Sitorus to two years in prison and fined him Rp 500 million. The prosecutors appealed the verdict and the Papua High Court accepted the appeal and sentenced the policeman to eight years in prison.
Sitorus’ lawyers then filed an appeal with the Supreme Court, which rejected the appeal and increased both the sentence and the fine.
Damrah said the verdict should have been executed on Nov. 4, 2014.
“Anyone who sees or knows the whereabouts of Labora Sitorus ought to immediately report it to Sorong Prosecutor’s Office,” said Damrah, citing the DPO letter.
Sorong Penitentiary warden, Maliki Hasan, said Sitorus had left the detention facility on March 17, 2014, saying he wanted to seek medical treatment. The prison’s physician, who had examined Sitorus, said the policeman suffered pains in his waist while his right leg was numb.
“Since then, he has never returned to the prison; consequently Sorong Prosecutor’s Office issued a DPO letter,” said Maliki. (ebf)(++++)

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http://news.mongabay.com/2015/0127-gfrn-harfenist-papua-deforestation-ramping-up.html

From mongabay.com (includes maps/photos)

4) Deforestation may be ramping up in Papua, West Papua

Ethan Harfenist, mongabay.com correspondent
January 27, 2015



Deforestation near Lake Sentani, Papua. Photo by Rhett A. Butler. 

Despite being covered in commodity concessions and viewed by some as becoming a focal point for the Indonesian government’s palm oil development in the country’s eastern half, the provinces of Papua and West Papua have, rather mysteriously, recorded very low deforestation rates compared to the rest of the archipelago. This may seem odd to some observers, especially given the number of reports and photos that have poured out of the two provinces highlighting the exploitation of their jungles.

But rather than represent a pleasant surprise for environmentalists and the peoples inhabiting these restive lands, the reality of the situation is a bit more complex. While it may be understood that large-scale deforestation in Papua and West Papua is still in its early stages, finding accurate deforestation data for these two provinces is no easy task. As a result, conflicting numbers published by the government and NGOs tell vastly different stories about what’s really happening on the ground. 

Let’s start out with official government data. The Indonesian Ministry of Forestry, an agency viewed by some as corrupt and mismanaged, claims in its 2013 Forest Area Statistics report that West Papua lost 20,285 hectares of forest from 2011-2012, while it provided no deforestation data for Papua province. Attempts by mongabay.com to clarify this absence of data with the ministry were unsuccessful. 

Meanwhile, data from Global Forest Watch (GFW) largely uphold the government’s numbers for West Papua, with 22,389 hectares of tree cover lost from 2011-2012, and Papua losing 64,230 hectares during the same time period. In all, Papua and West Papua lost 250,542 hectares and 122,885 hectares, respectively, from 2001-2012. 



Data from Global Forest Watch show Papua and West Papua have significant concession coverage, with logging concessions dominating the lowlands. Many intact forest landscape (IFL) areas have been degraded since 2000. Click to enlarge. 



In comparison to the forest loss of Indonesia as a whole, which reached 840,000 hectares in 2012 alone, the forests of Papua and West Papua have remained relatively unscathed. But although deforestation has not been as rampant in these regions as it has been for other Indonesian provinces, Charles Tawaru, Greenpeace’s forest campaigner in Papua, says that one thing is for certain: “The forests of Papua and West Papua continue to be degraded.” 

Global Forest Watch data show an upward trend of deforestation in Papua, with tree cover loss nearly doubling between 2011 and 2012, and GFW maps indicate that much of Papua’s tree cover loss occurred in the large number of timber and, to a lesser extent, palm oil and wood fiber concessions that dot its land. As timber concessions become depleted across other parts of the archipelago, namely Sumatra and Kalimantan, intact forests in Eastern Indonesia risk further depletion. 

“At the moment, logging — legal and illegal — and plantations are the main drivers [of deforestation] in Papua,” Yuyun Inradi, Greenpeace’s forest political campaign team leader, told mongabay.com

Logging has traditionally driven most of the provinces’ deforestation, but West Papua, according to Greenpeace, is currently undergoing something of a palm oil boom in certain regencies. Indonesia remains the world’s largest producer of palm oil and, as stated in a recent working paper published by the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), the country is targeting to produce 40 million tons a year by 2020 — twice the output it recorded in 2010. 

“In the provinces of Papua and West Papua, the area of oil palm plantations is low compared to other regions,” states the CIFOR paper. “However, it is growing at a steady rate.” 

But not all concessions in Papua and West Papua are being developed at the same pace. Global Forest Watch shows some concessions in the provinces contain intact forest landscapes (IFLs) that have been degraded, while others are completely void of IFLs. On the other hand, many of the concessions on the map appear to have large swaths of IFL. 

The Merauke region of Papua, which borders Papua New Guinea to the east, is dominated by concessions, many of which contain intact forest landscapes (IFLs). Map courtesy of Global Forest Watch. Click to enlarge. 

Still, given how much area concessions cover in the provinces, deforestation figures remain unusually low. After all, according to government figures cited by Greenpeace, Papua contains about a third of the remaining rainforests in Indonesia, a country that not too long ago gained international notoriety for surpassing Brazil as the world’s largest deforester in terms of annual rate. 

Yuyun claims that the presence of concessions doesn’t necessarily translate to active deforestation, especially when it comes to timber plots. “There are a lot of logging concessions that still have active licenses but have no activity on the ground,” he said. “Those that still have tracts of IFL could be new or inactive old concessions.” 

Meanwhile, palm oil concessions represent both a present and future issue for Papua’s forests. Sorong and Manokwari regencies are currently palm oil hotspots in West Papua, a province that has seen its area of palm oil estates increase from 31,000 hectares in 2007 to 70,000 in 2011, according to CIFOR. 

Landslide on a deforested hillside near Jayapura, Papua. With fewer tree roots to hold soil, landslides can become more common in deforested areas. Photo by Rhett A. Butler. 

In Papua province, the Merauke Integrated Food and Energy Estate (MIFEE) has attracted a lot of attention from activists and local communities alike for its wide-ranging concession grants. According to a 2012 Greenomics report, MIFEE is slated to cover over one million hectares of agricultural land in the Papuan region of Merauke. 

Although only two of 10 proposed blocks were to include palm oil, Greenpeace has previously noted that “significantly” more palm oil concessions were to be included. According to Yunyun, roughly 600,000 hectares included in the project’s limits have thus far been opened up for production. 

Because of how sensitive they are politically and how valuable they are economically, the provinces of Papua and West Papua represent major development priorities for the Indonesian government and are therefore prone to the effects of extractive industries. Although the situation may be hard to definitively gauge given spotty information, deforestation in Indonesian New Guinea may be more widespread than any published data purport. 


Citations:
  • Greenpeace, University of Maryland, World Resources Institute and Transparent World. 2014. Intact Forest Landscapes: update and degradation from 2000-2013. Accessed through Global Forest Watch on Jan. 27, 2015. www.globalforestwatch.org
  • Hansen, M. C., P. V. Potapov, R. Moore, M. Hancher, S. A. Turubanova, A. Tyukavina, D. Thau, S. V. Stehman, S. J. Goetz, T. R. Loveland, A. Kommareddy, A. Egorov, L. Chini, C. O. Justice, and J. R. G. Townshend. 2013. “Hansen/UMD/Google/USGS/NASA Tree Cover Loss and Gain Area.” University of Maryland, Google, USGS, and NASA. Accessed through Global Forest Watch on Jan. 27, 2015. www.globalforestwatch.org.
  • “Logging.” World Resources Institute. Accessed through Global Forest Watch on Jan. 27, 2015. www.globalforestwatch.org.
  • “Oil Palm.” World Resources Institute. Accessed through Global Forest Watch on Jan. 27, 2015. www.globalforestwatch.org.
  • UNEP-WCMC, UNEP, and IUCN. “World Database on Protected Areas.” Accessed on Jan. 27, 2015. www.protectedplanet.net.
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  • A google translate of article in 

    Be-aware google translate can be a bit erratic.

    Original bahasa link at

  • 5) AMP Ask PT Nabire New "Lift Foot" and Pull Military of Papua
  •   Author: Admin MS | Wednesday, January 28, 2015 18:22 Viewed: 310 Comments: 0
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  • Deforestation in Nabire for oil palm plantation in New Nabire Nabire by PT. Photo: mongabay.co.id.

  • Yogyakarta, STEP MAGAZINE - Papua Students Alliance (AMP) Yogyakarta City Committee condemns the palm oil companies that use the services of the security forces to protect themselves from the customary communities in Sima village, Nabire, Papua New requiring PT Nabire "foot lift" of their land.

  • Palm oil company PT. New Nabire, according to AMP, operates in Nabire without the approval of a large majority of indigenous tribes Yerisiam and several other tribes as customary rights owners.

  • "Without a clear legal basis PT. Nabire New entry and operation, the local tribal chiefs have rejected the company's presence, let alone use the services of the security forces," wrote AMP through a written statement to majalahselangkah.com Tuesday (01.27.15).

  • AMP assess, since the annexation of Papua previously self-determination (December 1, 1961), the military in Papua into its own fear in the hearts of every Papuans.

  • Indonesian military, obviously AMP, often so "guard dogs" are each on the side of investors, protecting their investments through companies who also operate by not giving a profit on indigenous peoples.

  • "The military action as a massacre, shooting, and pemenjarahan still do to this day, particularly in the area of the PT. Nabire New, they should be withdrawn from Nabire," wrote AMP.

  • "The massacres carried out by the Indonesian political game to exterminate ethnic Papuans slowly."

  • During Papua exist in the country and the people of Indonesia, according to AMP, the exploitation of the natural resources of Papua from Indonesian foreign and will remain present state permission. It also continued AMP, will expand opportunities Indonesian military to be "dogs" guard.

  • In fact, again according to AMP, the reality speaks that Papuans do not enjoy the fruits of exploitation, especially the Indonesian military presence frightening because the act of killing, torturing, raping, and a series of other reports relating to their red.

  • AMP requires, first, Indonesian military interesting (military / police) organic and non-organic from the entire land of Papua. Secondly, Indonesia halt all exploitation activities throughout Papua.

  • Third, AMP demanding to Indonesia and the world, will access to Papuan people's right to freedom of self-determination as a democratic solution for all the people of Papua, in ways that are elegant and dignified, unlike Act of 1969 that manipulative, intimidating and full of terror. (BT / 014 / MS)
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