Monday, January 4, 2016




4) ’Soft Approach’ in Din Case Should Be Upheld in Papua, Experts Say

By Theo van den Broek

                                                                Theo van den Broek – Jubi

Jayapura, Jubi – President Joko Widodo visited Papua, once again. His attention to Papua is admirable and should be appreciated. Some activities are on his agenda. His visit to Merauke was a kind of symbolic by planting the ‘time capsule’ containing his long-term visions (expected to be realized in 2085).
There are seven points that reflect his ideal image. Mostly, his hopes are related to the social-economy issues (human resources development, technology education center, equal infrastructure, world economic growth barometer, influential and independent State) and two are related to socio-cultural (upholding the pluralism, cultural, religious and ethic values; citizens and State apparatuses are corruption free). Those aspects are certainly very important and thankfully it becomes a core and a policy’s platform to be executed by the president.

For Papuans, hearing these, the seven points contains the meaning and hope. We also realized these seven points were revealed in the midst of a reality of violence occurred in Papua. In fact, before the president’s visit, the cruel violence was occurred in Sinak. It impress the pattern of violence in Papua is still becoming a chosen way by several parties to resolve the problem.
Along with this background, perhaps people in Papua are actually hoped another expectation could be included in the president’s sequence of hope, such as the expectation for Papuans to live in peaceful and free of violence, as well as to change the security approach to dialogue approach as the only dignified way in resolving the problem, despites how hard it is; it was certain that intended dialogue is much more wider than development dialogue sought by the president up to day.
Such a hope has become one of the highest ranks of wishes of Papuans, therefore it needs to be regretful that this aspect has less attention by the president when he filled the ‘time capsule’
Furthermore, the recent president’s visit could not be separated from his previous visits. So, it’s not exaggeration if then he was questioned about the resolution of several human right violations in Papua, including the severe human rights violation that was occurred in Enarotali on 8 December 2014.
The president’s commitment on this case has been said for several times, but the revelation of the case was still left by. We hope in his recent visit, he could give a clear point towards the settlement of Paniai Case (8 December 2014). The president’s visit would add value if the earlier commitment could be realized; if not, we are worried his visit would be categoried as such a ceremonial event. (*/rom)

Writer is former Director of SKP Keuskupan Jayapura

Statement – For Immediate Release

Press Contact Email:
Dear everyone,
As the New Year dawns and the suffering people of West Papua look to the future with renewed hope for liberation, the President of Indonesia, Joko Widodo set his feet down in West Papua in an attempt to legitimise the continued Indonesian military occupation of the country. Neither he nor the Indonesian police or military are welcome in West Papua as we West Papuans know that they are only there to continue to oppress us and exploit our natural resources.

The Indonesian government is doing all they can to try and draw attention away from the increasing human rights abuses in occupied West Papua. They do not want the world to find out about the ongoing genocide which has resulted in the deaths of over 500,000 West Papuan people. Such brutal killings have continued unabated ever since Indonesia illegally annexed West Papua in what we West Papuans refer to as the Act of NO Choice in 1969.
As part of this attention shifting, earlier this week the Head of the Indonesian Police, Badrodin Haiti childishly blamed myself for the recent deaths of 3 Indonesian policemen in West Papua which obviously I had nothing to do with whatsoever. I completely refute the ridiculous allegation which is just the latest in the surge of outright lies and propaganda being spread by the Indonesian government in an attempt to direct the blame for violence in West Papua away from the perpetrators.
The Indonesian police know very well that not only do I live 9000 miles away in exile in the United Kingdom, but also that I am an entirely peaceful Independence Leader.
As a peaceful leader and a Nobel Peace Prize Nominee, I have always advocated an entirely peaceful solution for West Papua whereby all West Papuans will be able to peacefully fulfil our fundamental right to self-determination through an Independence referendum.
Despite these facts, the Indonesian Head of the Police, Badrodin Haiti alleges that “Benny Wenda’s group” was directly response for the deaths of these Indonesian police officers, even though he knows that I have never taken part in any violence whatsoever and I do not control any group which does.
I seriously doubt that the Indonesian Police Chief genuinely believes that I am responsible for the deaths of these policemen but if he does then he is seriously deluded. I suggest he checks the real facts and gets properly educated. This finger pointing attitude is so unprofessional for a Police Chief it is almost laughable. He should be deeply ashamed for deliberately scapegoating peaceful leaders while his own police officers get away with impunity after killing West Papuan people in cold blood.
The Indonesian military and police have had a long history of trying to draw attention away from their human rights atrocities and this latest allegation is just the same old story being repeated over and over again. I remember clearly how the Indonesian government tried to silence the campaign by imposing an Interpol “Red Notice” on me in 2011 which was later dropped by Interpol themselves who deemed it “predominately political in nature”.
Why is it that after more than one year the Indonesian authorities are still unable to find any perpetrators of the massacre of West Papuan schoolchildren in Paniai, yet within 24 hours they immediately placed the blame on myself for deaths of Indonesian policemen?
Time and time again, West Papuans are massacred by the Indonesian authorities but the perpetrators never face justice.
Has there been any justice after the Paniai massacre? No.
Has there been any justice after the 2 West Papuan boys were shot in Timika on 28th September? No.
Has there been any justice after the 4 West Papuans were shot and tortured to death in Yapen on 1st December? No.
The list goes on and on.
Papuan lives do not matter to the Indonesian government but when Indonesian authorities die, West Papuans are blamed immediately. In fact, in retaliation 50 Indonesian military and police personnel have already been dispatched to the area where these 3 Indonesian policemen were reported dead.
On top of being blamed by the Head of the Indonesian Police, I was also been threatened by the Indonesian Intelligence Agency (BIN). According to CNN, the Indonesian Intelligence Agency declared it will implement a “soft approach” against Benny Wenda but “if he refuses to cooperate” then “another method is prepared”. They said ‘this method is secret and cannot be disclosed.’
I know that these threats are meant to scare me but I refuse to be intimidated by the Indonesian authorities who occupy my country, kill my people and then try to force me to “cooperate” with their schemes.
After being arrested and tortured in West Papua for peacefully leading my people, I escaped and was granted political asylum in the United Kingdom in 2003 where I now reside in exile.
What sort of methods is the Indonesian Intelligence Agency going to impose on me to try and force me to “cooperate”?
Is the Indonesian Government threatening to interfere with British law and prosecute me on false charges once again? Or will this “other method” involve sending Indonesian soldiers to come and kill me in the United Kingdom?
If the Indonesian Intelligence Agency want me to “cooperate” then they should let my people to exercise our fundamental right to self-determination in a peaceful Independence referendum as promised to us in 1962.
Neither I nor my people will be intimidated by the threats of these human rights abusing Indonesian authorities which feel they can bully their way around the world demanding that West Papuans who have been already granted political asylum are illegally extradited to be locked up and tortured again by the Indonesian authorities.
I therefore hope very much that despite the ongoing barring of foreign media by the Indonesian government, CNN and other media around the world will continue to report on the truth about occupied West Papua. I also hope that the Indonesian police and intelligence services will stop their childish finger pointing and threats towards entirely peaceful people.
This week, the world entered into a New Year, 2016. It is another year in which we West Papuans will continue to intensify our actions to peacefully struggle for the freedom of our people though exercising our fundamental right to self-determination.
We West Papuans will not be provoked or intimidated. We will continue our peaceful struggle until West Papua is finally free and Independent at last.
Papua Merdeka – Free West Papua
Benny Wenda
West Papuan Independence Leader
Spokesperson for the United Liberation Movement for West Papua


Nabire, Jubi – The coordinator of the Meepago Customary Council, Okto Marco Pekei, said illegal logging and pollution by mining companies are the main contributors to enviromental destruction in Papua.
According to him, illegal logging is difficult to control because it is carried out by the local people; meanwhile such destruction by the companies was often associated with the Environmental Impact Assessment.
“Deforestation in Meepago customary area could affect the relations between the forest and people, because it is the source of life for the indigenous Papuans in general and the local people of Meepago in particular,” he told through text message to Jubi on Saturday (2/1/2016).
Therefore, he collaborated with the Regional Customary Council (DAD) to identify the border area and forest tenureship.
The Chairman of Wolani, Mee and Moni Customary People Development Institute (LPMA SWAMEMO), Thobias Bagubau said based on the collected data from 2003-2015, about 50 hectares of customary forests in surrounding Degeuwo illegal mining area have been destructed. Therefore it formed a security team in attempting to safe the remaining customary forest.
“In the future, we will make coordination with the Regional Customary Council (DAD) and Meepago Customary Council (DAW) as well to discuss on customary forest sustainability. Currently we do not start the meeting yet, but few days ago I provided them some data to be reviewed. DAW and DAD to work together to defend the people’s interest by enforcing this customary forest issue,” he said.(Hengky Yeimo/rom)

4) ’Soft Approach’ in Din Case Should Be Upheld in Papua, Experts Say
By : Alin Almanar | on 8:32 PM January 04, 2016

Jakarta. Months-long talks by Indonesia's spy officials with Aceh's rebel leader that culminated in his surrender showed “what a soft approach can do” in dealing with militant groups in conflict areas, experts have said.
Nurdin Ismail, known as Din Minimi, turned himself in last week to authorities alongside 30 of his men after State Intelligence Agency (BIN) chief Sutiyoso personally approached him.
Din's group, allegedly responsible for a string of attacks throughout 2015 against police officers and soldiers in its East Aceh district stronghold, also gave up 15 assault rifles and a sack of ammunition.
This showed “the fruitfulness of a dialogic approach," Jaleswari Pramodhawardani, a senior researcher with the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI), said over the weekend.
BIN's moves were an antithesis to repressive measures usually taken by security personnel against militant groups, she said.
“There has been no proof that repressive approaches have reduced [violence]," she said.
As such, Jaleswari added, peaceful dialogue should be put forward to resolve security issues in other conflict areas.
In the far eastern province of Papua, the Free Papua Organization (OPM) has for decades mounted a low-level insurgency, complaining that the central government has given the resource-rich region an unfair share of the state's wealth after it became part of Indonesia in 1969.
“Sutiyoso should also go to Papua,” said Arbi Sanit, a political observer with the University of Indonesia.
He called for a peaceful dialogue to resolve conflicts in the restive region, with foreign parties as mediators and witness. Dialog between Jakarta and Papua has been a long-lasting government future goal for years.
“Putting dialogue forward in such areas is not an easy process, but we should move on with it,” Jaleswari said. “Din Minimi's case is an entry point.”

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