Australia West Papua Association (Sydney)
Media release 30 April 2016
AWPA condemns the arrest of 41 KNPB activists in Jayapura
The Australia West Papua Association condemns the arrest of 41 KNPB activists in Jayapura on Friday 29 April, reported by surapapua.com. The activists were arrested simply because they were handing out leaflets informing people of a rally to be held on the 2nd May. The purpose of the rally was to commemorate and protest the tragic betrayal of West Papua by the international community when West Papua was handed over by United Nations Temporary Executive Authority (UNTEA) to Indonesian administration on the 1st of May 1963, 53 years ago. The KNPB also called on people to show support for the meeting of the International Parliamentarians for West Papua in London.
Joe Collins of AWPA said “ hopefully those arrested will be released and the security forces will not interfere with any peaceful rallies that take place on the 2 May. It should be remembered on the 1 May last year up to 270 people were arrested. The arrests of activists on Friday the 29 April are obviously an attempt by the security forces to intimidate local people into not taking part in any rallies called”.
“Joe Collins said , hopefully the international community is beginning to realise that if West Papuans are continuing to protest after 53 years of Indonesian administration, willing to face arrest and torture, then their cries of help to the international community should be heeded. A good start would be for the PIF countries to continue to press Jakarta to allow a PIF fact finding mission to West Papua”.