Tuesday, February 23, 2016

1) Indonesian police to question priest on treason charge

1) Indonesian police to question priest on treason charge
2) Indonesia environment ministry detects 370 plus forest ‘hotspots’ in West Papua
————————————————————————-

1) Indonesian police to question priest on treason charge

Father John Djonga led prayer service attended by members of alleged Papuan separatist group


Father John Djonga leads a prayer service to inaugurate the office building of the Papuan Customary Council in Wamena, Indonesia, on Feb. 15. Police later sought to question the priest on possible treason charges. (Photo courtesy of Flori G.)
Benny Mawel in Jayapura and Ryan Dagur in Jakarta, Indonesia


February 23, 2016



Indonesian police are seeking to question a Catholic priest over possible treason charges for leading a prayer service attended by members of an alleged Papuan separatist group.
Father John Djonga was summoned by police to appear at the station in Wamena on Feb. 19. However, the priest refused to appear, telling ucanews.com that police also needed to contact his superiors at Jayapura Diocese and that he needed to retain counsel before agreeing to meet with investigators.
Father Djonga led a prayer service on Feb. 15 to inaugurate the office building of the Papuan Customary Council, where a banner of the separatist United Liberation Movement for West Papua was unveiled.
"I came to the program as a priest on behalf of the Catholic Church. I just led the service," he said.
"The council fights for the Papuan people so that they can be free from poverty. It also fights against human rights violations and for other social issues. I prayed for this during the service," he said.
Father Djonga, a noted human rights activist in the province, said he told police to send him a second letter in which diocesan officials also were notified "as I serve the diocese."
He faces up to four months in prison by declining to answer the initial summons.
Father Yulianus Bidau Mote, chairman of the diocese's Commission for the Laity, said Father Djonga's presence at the ceremony was a priest representing the diocese, therefore police needed to contact the diocese before summoning one of its priests for questioning.
"Don't just send a letter. As an institution, the local police must be able to provide the diocese with notification," he told ucanews.com.
Police said they wanted to interview Father Djonga as a possible witness to an act of treason; it was unclear if the priest was a suspect himself.
According to Papua Police Chief Inspector Gen. Paulus Waterpauw, police had questioned three witnesses so far.
—————————————————————-
2) Indonesia environment ministry detects 370 plus forest ‘hotspots’ in West Papua
Indonesia’s Environmental Affairs and Forestry Minister Siti Nurbaya says her ministry’s team has found some 370 to 500 “hotspots” of forest fires in the West Papuan 
province of Papua earlier this year.
“It is a matter of worry since there was no hotspot in Papua last year, and this year the number is already around 370 to 500,” Nurbaya said.
The fires were not being caused by any act of corporations but resulting due to the indigenous people’s lifestyle habits, she said.
Her ministry and the newly set up Peatland Restoration Agency (BGR) continue to coordinate to curb forest fires in Papua, which is one of  seven Indonesian 
provinces being closely monitored.
The ministry sent a team to Papua in January and found local people burning old grass in order to prepare the ground to grow fresh grass for cattle.
Besides, fires were also lit up on purpose along the banks of rivers and lakes to catch fish.
The central and local governments need to inform the communities regarding certain traditional slash and burn methods that are allowed, the minister said.

“It should be firmly ensured that there must be no fire in peatland area, and that it is allowed in other areas with clear restrictions,” she said.
She said use of fire in hunting must be avoided because it could spark a bigger fire.
————————————————-

No comments:

Post a Comment