Friday, June 14, 2024

West Papua calls out Indonesia's 'hypocritical' stance

 https://www.rnz.co.nz/international/programmes/datelinepacific/audio/2018942765/west-papua-calls-out-indonesia-s-hypocritical-stance 


West Papua calls out Indonesia's 'hypocritical' stance



West Papua Liberation Army members outside the torched base camp of Indonesian logging company PT Bangun Katu Irian Photo: Supplied


From Pacific Waves, 6:02 am today 

Listen duration4:37

 West Papua pro-independence supporters are calling Indonesia's condemnation of Israel hypocritical considering its occupation in Papua for 61 years. 

The United Liberation Movement for West Papua is asking for the United Nations Human Rights Council to immediately form a fact-finding mission to investigate alleged human rights violations in the area. 

RNZ Pacific's Caleb Fotheringham reports.


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Thursday, June 13, 2024

1) From social media to the Supreme Court: The battle to save Papua’s forests


2) Peaceful demonstration led by Papua Bali Student Community met with police repression in Denpasar – five arrested and at least five injured

3) IDP Update June 2024: Urgent call for humanitarian access to conflict areas

4) Australia should seek a trilateral partnership with Indonesia and PNG

5) Tyranny of proximity



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Human Rights Monitor 

https://humanrightsmonitor.org/news/from-social-media-to-the-supreme-court-the-battle-to-save-papuas-forests/

1) From social media to the Supreme Court: The battle to save Papua’s forests



The recent slogan “All Eyes on Papua” emerged in response to the viral “All Eyes on Rafah” campaign on Instagram. Indigenous communities and the youth in Papua hope that this movement will foster real solidarity with Papuan issues. The first post, shared more than three million times, called for support for the Awyu people in Boven Digoel, who are battling deforestation caused by the palm oil company PT Indo Asiana Lestari.

The fight for customary land

The Awyu tribe is striving to protect 36,094 hectares of customary land from palm oil expansion. The campaign, initially focused on agrarian conflicts, has now broadened to address issues such as education, health, hunger, and armed conflicts in Papua. These issues have led to numerous deaths and displacements over the decades.
Hendrikus Franky Woro, a representative of the Awyu Tribe, has become a central figure in this movement, despite not using social media. He recently expressed gratitude for the support from netizens and emphasized the tribe’s reliance on the Supreme Court to fairly resolve their lawsuit against PT Indo Asiana Lestari.

Broader socio-political issues

The campaign gained traction after the Awyu representatives held a protest in front of the Supreme Court office in Jakarta on 27 May 2024. They performed traditional dances and chants, displaying posters with messages like “Save Papua’s Customary Forests” and “Papua is Not Empty Land.”
The “All Eyes on Papua” slogan went viral shortly after this protest. The campaign was bolstered by public figures, including Indonesian national footballer Sandy Walsh, and it drew significant attention to the extensive deforestation in Papua, documented by Yayasan Pusaka Bentala Rakyat. This deforestation, notably in Boven Digoel, threatens the livelihoods and heritage of indigenous communities.
The movement has highlighted not only environmental but also socio-political issues in Papua. Campaigners, such as Greenpeace’s Sekar Banjaran Aji, stress the importance of public support in pressuring the Supreme Court to protect the forests. The campaign also seeks to raise awareness about the broader challenges faced by indigenous Papuans, including economic, health, and human rights issues.

Government response and criticism

The Indonesian government has responded with mixed signals. Presidential special staff Billy Mambrasar claimed to have recommended a review of the company permits to President Joko Widodo. However, this claim was questioned by researchers and activists who pointed out the government’s historical neglect of indigenous rights and environmental concerns.
The United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) criticised the Indonesian government for ignoring long-standing conflicts and human rights abuses in Papua while condemning international conflicts like those in Palestine. They argue that the Indonesian government’s approach has resulted in slow-motion genocide, ethnocide, and ecocide in Papua.

The legal battle continues

The legal battle for the Awyu and Moi tribes continues, with hopes pinned on the Supreme Court’s upcoming decision. Despite setbacks in lower courts, the tribes remain determined to defend their customary lands. Their struggle represents not only a fight for environmental justice but also a broader call for recognition and protection of indigenous rights in Indonesia.
The “All Eyes on Papua” campaign serves as a powerful reminder of the ongoing struggles in Papua and the urgent need for solidarity and action to protect the region’s people and environment. The movement urges the public to educate themselves about Papuan issues and support the indigenous communities’ efforts to secure their rights and heritage.




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Human Rights Monitor 

https://humanrightsmonitor.org/case/peaceful-demonstration-led-by-papua-bali-student-community-met-with-police-repression-in-denpasar-five-arrested-and-at-least-five-injured/

2) Peaceful demonstration led by Papua Bali Student Community met with police repression in Denpasar – five arrested and at least five injured

On 10 June 2024, the Papua Bali Student Community Student Association, in collaboration with IMMAPPA Bali and AMP KK Bali, organised a peaceful demonstration in Denpasar to support the indigenous Awyu and Moi tribes in their struggle to protect their customary lands and forests. The event was marked by a series of significant confrontations with local police forces.
At 09:30, demonstrators gathered at the East Renon Parking Gathering Point. The coordination team, led by the “Korlap,” organized the protesters into a neat formation, displaying banners and posters advocating for indigenous rights.

Confrontation with police and arrested

Shortly after, the group proceeded towards the Renon roundabout, a location strategically chosen for its visibility, being in front of the US Consulate. However, the procession was halted en route by a heavy police presence, with around 200 officers, 2 Dalmas cars, and 1 command car forming a blockade. The police cited the presence of a counter-demonstration by the PGN mass organization as the reason for the obstruction.
For almost four hours, the demonstrators maintained their position, engaging in political speeches and poetry readings. Despite their peaceful stance, the police refused to allow them to move to the designated action point.
Tensions escalated when the Korlap decided to lead the protesters through the police barricade towards the police station. The police responded with force, using water cannons and tear gas to disperse the crowd. Several demonstrators were beaten and kicked while in handcuffs and transported to Renon Police Station. Among the injured were individuals identified by their initials: HM, SG, MA, LM, and IK.
Additionally, four protesters and one member of LBH Bali, an allied legal aid organisation, were forcibly handcuffed and taken into custody. The individuals taken to the police station were identified as AM, MK, MA, HM, and one unnamed friend from LBH Bali.
Approximately 40 minutes later, a group of protesters arrived at the Renon police station to demand the release of their detained colleagues. Following pressure from the demonstrators, the police released all detainees. The group then reconvened at the Putra Papua rented house, where they read a formal statement of attitude.

Statement by Papuan the Community and Student Association (IMMAPA) Bali and Bali City Committee

On 11 June 2024 the Papuan Community and Student Association (IMMAPA) Bali and Bali City Committee issued a statement of attitude containing the following main issues and demands: 

Revoke Company Licenses:

  • Urges President Joko Widodo and the Supreme Court to revoke licenses of companies operating on Awyu and Moi tribal lands.

Protection of Customary Lands:

  • Emphasizes the need to save the forests of the Awyu and Moi tribes from the encroachment of palm oil companies.
  • Highlights lawsuits filed by the tribes against government-issued permits to companies like PT Indo Asiana Lestari (IAL), PT Kartika Cipta Pratama, PT Megakarya Jaya Raya, and PT Sorong Agro Sawitindo (SAS).

Environmental and Cultural Impact:

  • Points out that the activities of these companies threaten the indigenous forests, which are vital for the tribes’ livelihood, culture, and biodiversity.
  • Notes the potential release of 25 million tons of CO2e due to deforestation, exacerbating the climate crisis.

Legal Battles and Government Inaction:

  • Details the complicated legal journey of the Awyu and Moi tribes, including lawsuits that have been dismissed or are pending in higher courts.
  • Calls for the Supreme Court to issue a ruling that favors environmental protection and indigenous rights.

Broader Context of Exploitation and Rights Violations:

  • Describes other instances of land grabbing, illegal operations, and environmental destruction across Papua, including:
    • The MIFEE project in Merauke.
    • Petroleum exploration in Timika Agimuga.
    • Illegal gold mining in Deiyai and Yalimo.
    • The construction of government and military facilities on customary lands without consent.

Human Rights Concerns:

  • Highlights ongoing human rights abuses, including criminalization, intimidation, and violence against indigenous people.
  • Mentions specific cases of police and military repression, such as the shooting of civilians in Yahukimo and large-scale evacuations due to conflicts.

Specific Demands:

  • Calls for the Supreme Court to prioritize environmental and climate justice.
  • Demands the revocation of all permits in Awyu and Moi lands.
  • Urges the Indonesian government to stop criminalizing indigenous peoples and to withdraw military forces from Papua.
  • Appeals for public support for the Awyu and Moi tribes’ struggle and for the preservation of Papuan forests.
  • Requests open access for national and international journalists to West Papua.
  • Advocates for the right to self-determination for the West Papuan nation as a democratic solution.
The statement underscores the urgent need for legal and governmental action to protect the rights and lands of the Awyu and Moi tribes. It highlights the broader issue of environmental and human rights abuses in Papua and calls for solidarity and support from the public and international community to address these injustices. The statement portrays the struggle of the indigenous tribes as a crucial effort not only for their survival but for the broader fight against climate change and the preservation of cultural heritage.

Photos of protestors injured on 10 June in Bali

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Human Rights Monitor 



3) IDP Update June 2024: Urgent call for humanitarian access to conflict areas

As of June 2024, over 76,919 people in West Papua[1], predominantly indigenous Papuans, remain internally displaced due to the armed conflict in the region. While around two to three thousand people in the Maybrat Regency have reportedly returned home, new internal displacements have occurred. These arose from the assassination of a military member in the Paniai Regency on 11 April 2024 and new outbreaks of armed violence in the Intan Jaya Regency in early May 2024.
Human Rights Monitor has not received updated information on the condition and numbers of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Pegunungan Bintang and Puncak regencies in the past eight months. Many of these IDPs are believed to still reside in towns like Nabire, Wamena, Jayapura and other locations across West Papua. These areas remain extremely isolated from media coverage and human rights reporting due to heavy security force presence and ongoing clashes between security forces and the West Papua National Liberation Army (TPNPB). Information from local informants suggests entire villages and districts have been abandoned, such as Suru-Suru District in Yahukimo Regency. Villagers there continue to live in the forest or have relocated to villages in the neighbouring Asmath Regency. The health and education facilities in Suru-Suru have been devastated by security force members and remain inoperative.
The government continues to disregard the humanitarian crisis in West Papua, leaving IDPs without access to humanitarian assistance from national or international organisations.  …………...



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4) Australia should seek a trilateral partnership with Indonesia and PNG
13 Jun 2024|Ridvan Kilic

With relations between Australia, Indonesia and Papua New Guinea (PNG) strong, the time is right for Australia to advocate for a high-level Australia–Indonesia–PNG trilateral strategic partnership.
Australia’s 2016 Defence White Paper identified the Pacific and Southeast Asia as Australia’s second strategic defence interest, behind a secure and resilient Australia itself. Geography makes Indonesia and PNG the most important neighbours to Australia. They (and East Timor) are the closest. They also stand between Australia and China. At the same time, Indonesia is Southeast Asia’s largest country, and PNG is the largest Pacific Island nation.
While the strengthening of the set of three bilateral ties is welcome, a trilateral arrangement would be even better. Through it, the three countries could collectively address shared challenges. Achieving this would certainly be in Australia’s interest.
As part of such an arrangement, annual trilateral leaders’ and ministerial-level summits should be held. The partnership should also reaffirm the territorial sovereignty of all three countries, including unwavering support for freedom of navigation in the Indo-Pacific, and reinforce the need for the peaceful resolution of regional maritime disputes in accordance with the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.
The partners could focus on areas of shared interests and concerns and promote cooperation in traditional security issues such as border security, maritime security, defence infrastructure development, and policing. For instance, they could together increase their maritime security capabilities by running regular maritime patrols, holding annual joint military exercises and training, and sharing critical information about maritime safety.
Illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing continues to pose a direct threat to all three neighbours’ maritime resources and borders. For example, PNG is losing 1 billion kina (US$260 million) annually due to IUU fishing, while Indonesia’s losses are US$23 billion a year. Meanwhile, Australia has the world’s third-largest exclusive economic zone and is therefore wary of the growing IUU fishing threat. In the trilateral partnership, an Australia–Indonesia–PNG hotline could be established to prevent illegal vessels from sailing from one country’s territorial waters to another’s.
The partnership should also collaborate on non-traditional security areas such as climate change, critical infrastructure, cybersecurity, health security, disaster risk reduction and transnational crime. Climate change, in particular, remains a major environmental security threat for Indonesia, Australia and PNG. Through the trilateral partnership, the neighbours could deepen their climate cooperation and strengthen the climate adaptation and infrastructure capacities of each of them.
Despite Indonesia’s and PNG’s geostrategic importance, Australia’s 2023 Defence Strategic Review failed to mention them. Canberra has deepened its two bilateral security relationships with them but has made scant efforts to advance a trilateral partnership.
In 2020, Canberra and Port Moresby elevated their relationship to a comprehensive strategic partnership (CSP), and last year the two countries signed a historic security agreement. Since 2020, through the Lombrum Joint Initiative, Australia has also been supporting PNG in its efforts to redevelop the Lombrum Naval Base on Manus Island, north of the mainland. Last year, Australia gave four Guardian-class patrol boats to PNG, helping it to guard territorial waters from transnational crime and IUU fishing.
With Indonesia, Australia shares the world’s longest maritime boundary. The two countries upgraded their strategic ties to a CSP in 2018. In recent years, the bilateral relationship has been further boosted by the graduation of Indonesian military cadets for the first time from the Royal Australian Military College, Duntroon. The two neighbours are also planning to sign a new treaty-level defence cooperation agreement this year. In the Australia–Indonesia CSP, they committed to working together in the Pacific in trilateral cooperation with an unnamed third country from the Pacific.
Indonesia–PNG relations improved in 2023 when they ratified an agreement governing their border, which is sometimes crossed by insurgents opposed to Indonesian possession of West Papua. PNG unequivocally recognises Indonesia’s sovereignty over West Papua.
This year Jakarta and Port Moresby ratified and expanded their defence cooperation agreement. PNG hopes that the new deal will expand bilateral security cooperation in the areas of ‘joint border patrols, and military exercises’.
Ultimately, amid growing unpredictability in the Indo-Pacific, a solid Australia–Indonesia–PNG trilateral partnership would contribute to greater stability in Australia’s immediate region.

Ridvan Kilic is a recent graduate of the Master of International Relations course at La Trobe University. His main focus is on Australia, Indonesia, Southeast Asian regionalism and the Indo-Pacific. Image of PNG Prime Minister James Marape: Hilary Wardhaugh/AFP via Getty Images.

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5) Tyranny of proximity

Jun 14, 2024

The pundits are already in a tizz: What’ll happen to defence, AUKUS, trade and other relationships should Trump win in November? More pressing and certain is how we’ll cope when Indonesia’s President-elect Prabowo Subianto takes office in October.

Next door there’ll be a leader “with demonstrated disregard for the rule of law …seen by many as a war criminal” and not the person most voters wanted in the February poll.

Proof is that two earlier stabs at the Presidency and one at the VP job by the disgraced and aging former general were all been trashed by the electorate.

Prabowo only won this year when coupled with Gibran Rakabuming son of the current and popular President Joko ‘Jokowi’ Widodo with voters hoping the lad will be Dad Version Two.

It’s widely accepted that the youngster’s presence on the ticket has put right-wing Prabowo in power.

But for how long? The life expectancy for Indonesian men is 68. Prabowo will be 73 when inaugurated. About half the population of the world’s fourth-largest nation is under 30.

Should plump, reportedly hot-tempered Prabowo become too unwell to govern, Vice President-elect, Gibran, 36, will be the youngest leader in Indonesian history – and probably the world.

He’s a Singapore-educated businessman from the regional city of Solo where he’s been mayor. His wife accountant Selvi Ananda was a Catholic but had to convert to Islam to marry. He has no military background and is not known for religiosity.

Prabowo is the Republic’s version of Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin or Hungary’s Viktor Orb├ín. There’s little Indonesian material online to back that slander of fascism; most comes from Australian researchers.

Instead, locals get details of Prabowo’s massive electoral victory – 55.5 per cent in a three-man contest – won through playing the role of an avuncular and caring statesman. Cartoon images contrived through his PR team have whitewashed his alleged villainy.

Missing are at-length interviews with independent Western journalists for Prabowo is afraid. Not from misunderstanding questions in English, a language in which he’s fluent from schooling in London, but because he’s – let’s be careful here – a stranger to frank talk with a free press.

He knows he’ll be asked about his past; however much he spins his sins of yesteryear and tries to push them away as unproved and unimportant, all the while claiming the future is the only thing that matters. A pub-test fail.

For an oversight of the man who’ll lead the world’s fourth most populous nation with more Muslims than any other country – and our neighbour – the best analysis is a 12-page background briefing here.

It comes from Australian writer and human rights activist Pat Walsh who was seconded by the UN to help establish and advise the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (CAVR) after the 1999 East Timor referendum.

It’s a damning document that should have provoked legal challenges, but wasn’t on TikTok so passed with little notice. It’s also possible Prabowo wasn’t keen to fuel international publicity.

A shortened version was published ahead of the February election in the prestigious magazine Inside Indonesia with the heading: Is Prabowo fit and proper to be Indonesia’s next president?

This is Walsh’s answer [personal communication]:

“Until he is cleared of allegations of wrongdoing, Prabowo is not fit and proper to serve as the president of this great nation.

“If Prabowo is elected a dark cloud will settle over Indonesia. Indonesia will be perceived as regressive, prepared to forget rather than remember and learn, and to tolerate impunity when, in fact, it could be a beacon of democracy and champion of the rule of law in a much-troubled region and world.”

Corrosive, but the reality is that this is the man Canberra will have to deal with for the next five years.

Some of Walsh’s analysis is based on evidence given to CAVR; this concluded that the commando Kopassus Special Forces “were responsible for committing crimes against humanity and war crimes during Indonesia’s occupation of East Timor, 1975-1999.

“As a member and then a commander of Kopassus, Prabowo undertook at least four tours of duty in East Timor…They show (he was) anything but an innocent or bit player.”

Walsh’s voice is not isolated. Tim Lindsey, professor of Asian Law at Melbourne Uni has written:

“There are claims of human rights abuses against him (including alleged kidnappings, forced disappearances and war crimes by troops under his command); and his campaign was marred by accusations of unethical conduct and collusion.

“Prabowo has been very clear in the past that he thinks the democratic reforms that followed the fall of Soeharto in 1998, should be wound back.

“…as he settles into office, a further gradual dismantling of democratic checks and balances, institutions and individual freedoms is very likely. Critics of Prabowo have good reason to be concerned.”

After he was cashiered for disobeying orders, and his marriage with President Soeharto’s daughter Siti hit the rocks, Prabowo fled to exile in Jordan.

He returned years later as a businessman backed by his billionaire younger brother Hashim Djojohadikusumo who helped bankroll his third campaign.

Since the poll, Jokowi has restored Prabowo’s rank as a four-star general. He’d earlier made him Minister for Defence.

So how does Walsh feel now?

“I am shocked by the ease with which Prabowo won,” he told your correspondent. “That he pulled it off in one round against credible alternative candidates and despite his obvious unsuitability is stunning.

“That his military failures and dismissals, violations of human rights and the rule of law, international pariah status (declared persona non grata by three US presidents and Australia), age, lack of legislative and government experience and previous electoral failures, were ignored, beggars belief.”

International diplomacy protocols ensure Prabowo will be treated with respect by PM Anthony Albanese and Foreign Minister Penny Wong whatever they feel personally. Indonesia is too big, too close and too important to snub.

Should he come to Australia he’ll be shielded from physical harm, but don’t expect any open media conferences.


Duncan Graham has been a journalist for more than 40 years in print, radio and TV. He is the author of People Next Door (UWA Press). He is now writing for the English language media in Indonesia from within Indonesia.
Duncan Graham has an MPhil degree, a Walkley Award, two Human Rights Commission awards and other prizes for his radio, TV and print journalism in Australia. He lives in East Java.
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Wednesday, June 12, 2024

AWPA -West Papua Update No 4- 13 June 2024


 Australia West Papua Association (Sydney) 


AWPA -West Papua Update No 4-   13 June   2024




The situation in West Papua remains the same. No improvement in the human rights situation.    There are ongoing restrictions and crackdown on protests and  a number of  students were  arrested for wearing Morning Star symbols/ flags on their clothing. Clashes continued between the TPNPB and the Indonesian security forces. The latest below.

A snapshot of events.



Soldier survives Papuan insurgent attack in Dekai: Police  

Antara June 7, 2024 

Timika, C Papua (ANTARA) - A soldier from the 1715/Yahukimo District Military Command (Kodim) survived a Papuan insurgent's assault on Thursday (June 6), albeit suffering from a bullet wound on his left thigh, a police spokesman confirmed. The wounded soldier, identified as First Private Rajami Uhio, is currently receiving treatment at the Dekai Public Hospital, Operation Peace Cartenz Task Force spokesperson Adjunct Senior Commissioner Bayu Suseno stated.Uhio was shot by an armed rebel while passing through Seradala Road KM 2 in Dekai Sub-district, Yahukimo District, Papua Pegunungan Province, at 6:20 p.m. local time, he remarked here, Thursday (June 6).

In response to the shooting incident, task force personnel had been deployed to hunt down the attacker, who is believed to belong to the XVI insurgent group operating in the Yahukimo region, he noted. Over the past few years, armed Papuan groups have often employed hit-and-run tactics against Indonesian security personnel and mounted acts of terror against civilians in the districts of Intan Jaya, Nduga, Puncak, and Maybrat to incite fear among the people. The targets of such acts of terror have included construction workers, motorcycle taxi (ojek) drivers, teachers, students, street food vendors, and also civilian aircraft.

On December 2, 2018, a group of armed Papuan separatists brutally killed 31 workers from PT Istaka Karya engaged in the Trans Papua project in Kali Yigi and Kali Aurak in Yigi Sub-district, Nduga District. Early in the morning of September 2, 2021, several members of a Papuan separatist terrorist group operating in Maybrat District ambushed soldiers while they were asleep at the Kisor military post located at Kisor Village, South Aifat Sub-district. On March 2, 2022, several members of an armed Papuan group operating in Beoga Sub-district, Puncak District, killed eight Palaparing Timur Telematika (PTT) workers who were repairing a base transceiver station (BTS) tower belonging to state-owned telecommunications operator Telkomsel. On February 7, 2023, New Zealand pilot Phillip Mark Mehrtens was taken hostage by the Egianus Kogoya-led armed group. Philip was piloting an aircraft belonging to Indonesian airline Susi Air when the armed group captured him. Members of the group set his plane on fire shortly after it landed in Nduga District.  
Translator: Agustina EJ, Rahmad Nasution Editor: Tia Mutiasari






 

MPR Speaker urges firm action against KKB in Papua  

Antara June 7, 2024 

Jakarta (ANTARA) - People's Consultative Assembly (MPR) Speaker Bambang Soesatyo urged the Defense Forces (TNI) and the National Police (Polri) to catch members of the Armed Criminal Group (KKB) who shot a soldier in Yahukimo, Papua Highland.  Bambang expressed his condemnation of the shooting incident and urged the TNI and Polri to take firm action against the KKB. "I urged police officers, assisted by TNI units, to immediately pursue and restrict the movement of the perpetrators as well as take firm and measured action against the KKB," he noted in a statement on Friday. He also called on the government to adopt a firm stance in dealing with the KKB, which continues to repeat its acts of violence that result in victims.

"They also created chaos and disturbed the security and comfort of the local community," Bambang pointed out. He emphasized the need to identify root causes of the conflict through in-depth study and take appropriate solutions.Bambang also urged all relevant stakeholders to jointly develop strategic steps for dealing with the KKB in Papua. "It can be carried out through a collaborative and holistic approach, especially in maintaining and improving the security and welfare of the Papuan people," he stated. The KKB members shot a soldier from a military district post in Dekai, Yahukimo, Papua Highland, on Thursday, injuring him on the left thigh. Head of Information Center of the Papua Military Regional Command XVII/Cenderawasih, Lt. Col. Candra Kurniawan, stated that TNI and Polri officers are pursuing the perpetrators. Translator: Melalusa Susthira K, Resinta Sulistiyandari Editor: Anton Santoso





In its latest report on IDPs in West Papua,   Human Rights Monitor estimates that as of June 2024, there are over 76,919 people in West Papua  who  remain internally displaced due to the armed conflict in the region.

Full report

IDP Update June 2024: Urgent call for humanitarian access to conflict areas

Human Rights Monitor  12 June 2024 

 

As of June 2024, over 76,919 people in West Papua[1], predominantly indigenous Papuans, remain internally displaced due to the armed conflict in the region. While around two to three thousand people in the Maybrat Regency have reportedly returned home, new internal displacements have occurred. These arose from the assassination of a military member in the Paniai Regency on 11 April 2024 and new outbreaks of armed violence in the Intan Jaya Regency in early May 2024.

 

Human Rights Monitor has not received updated information on the condition and numbers of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Pegunungan Bintang and Puncak regencies in the past eight months. Many of these IDPs are believed to still reside in towns like Nabire, Wamena, Jayapura and other locations across West Papua. These areas remain extremely isolated from media coverage and human rights reporting due to heavy security force presence and ongoing clashes between security forces and the West Papua National Liberation Army (TPNPB). Information from local informants suggests entire villages and districts have been abandoned, such as Suru-Suru District in Yahukimo Regency. Villagers there continue to live in the forest or have relocated to villages in the neighbouring Asmath Regency. The health and education facilities in Suru-Suru have been devastated by security force members and remain inoperative.

The government continues to disregard the humanitarian crisis in West Papua, leaving IDPs without access to humanitarian assistance from national or international organisations.  



From the report

IDPs across West Papua, Indonesia, as of 1 June 2024

RegencyNo IDPsDisplaced sinceAdditional info
Nduga[2]56,9814 Dec. 18IDPs originate from 11 districts in Nduga; more than 615 IDPs reportedly died as of January 2022
Puncak[3]2,72427 Apr. 21at least 16 IDPs have reportedly died during displacement
Intan Jaya[4]5,85926 Oct. 21at least 126 IDPs face health issues, and 11 IDPs reportedly died
Maybrat[5]3.3872 Sep. 21IDPs originated from 5 districts; 138 IDPs reportedly died, and the local Govt reportedly facilitated the return of IDPs since November 2022
Pegunungan Bintang (Kiwirok District) [6]2,25210 Oct. 21about 200 IDPs fled to PNG, 74 IDPs reportedly died, and dozens of IDPs suffered from sickness
Pegunungan Bintang (Serambakon District) [7]9118 Sep. 23ten persons sick, two women pregnant, 47 children among the IDPs
Yahukimo (Suru-Suru District) [8]1,97120 Nov. 21IDPs from 13 villages sought shelter in 15 temporary camps, 16 women gave birth without medical attention, and 13 IDPs reportedly died. 
Yahukimo (Dekai District) [9]55421 Aug. 2313 persons were sick; one died, and two females murdered
Fakfak (Kramongmongga District)[10]50016 Aug. 23N/A
Paniai[11]>2,60012 Apr. 24internal displacements were reported from the districts of Agadide, Ekadide and Bibida
T O T A L> 76,919








Human Rights Monitor

Police blocked demonstration in Manokwari on 1 May – protestors remained peaceful

Human Rights News / Indonesia, West Papua / 




On 1 May, eight civil society organisations forming the Papuan People’s Front (FRP) indeed held a peaceful demonstration in Manokwari. The demonstration commemorated the 61st anniversary of Papua’s annexation into Indonesia and took place at three locations: in front of the Mansinam Student Dormitory, the Amban Subdistrict Office, and the entrance of the University of Papua Manokwari. The protesters carried banners, some reportedly waved red KNPB flags, and delivered speeches. Their key themes were the right of self-determination for the Papuan people and solidarity with international workers on 1 May (International Workers’ Day).


Coordinator Lotty Selak explained that the demonstrators originally planned a long march to the West Papua Provincial Parliament. However, security forces blocked their path at the Makalo Manokwari monument. Negotiations failed to reach an agreement, and the demonstrators occupied the road in protest. Eventually, security forces allowed representatives to deliver speeches and a statement outlining the FRP’s position. The FRP’s statement rejected Indonesia’s claim to Papua, arguing it lacked historical evidence. They see West Papua as an independent nation and reject the results of the 1969 Act of Free Choice due to its flawed process. The FRP’s core demand was the right to self-determination for West Papua, along with an end to martial law in the region.

The demonstration itself remained peaceful, and the demonstrators dispersed after their statement was read. However, it is important to note that security forces prevented them from carrying out their planned long march.








Papua Annexation Day rally in Bali harassed, forcibly dispersed by police



Papuan students face off against police in Denpasar, Bali – May 1, 2024 (SP)


Suara Papua – May 2, 2024

Elisa Sekenyap, Jayapura – A peaceful demonstration by Papuan students in the Balinese provincial capital of Denpasar on Wednesday May 1 to commemorate the day Papua was annexed into the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia (NKRI) has been blocked and repressed by police. Earlier, according to the notification letter submitted to police, the protesters planned to gather at the Renon Field eastern parking area then hold a long-march to the location of the action at the American Consulate in Denpasar. The plan however was not realised because officers from the Bali regional police (Polda) and the Denpasar city municipal police (Polresta) rushed to intercept the protesters, who were then forced to disperse at exactly 12 noon……………………









Papuans head to Indonesian court to protect forests from palm oil

Campaigners are taking legal action to stop four palm oil companies from clearing vast tracts of forest for plantations.

By Al Jazeera Staff Published On 28 May 2004




The Awyu and Moi say they want to stop the plantations for the benefit of their community and future generations. [Bay Ismoyo/AFP] 

Indigenous activists from the Indonesian province of West Papua have held traditional ceremonies outside the country’s Supreme Court in Jakarta calling for their traditional land and forests to be protected from palm oil plantations.

Representatives of the Awyu and Moi communities held prayers and performed dances in front of the Supreme Court building on Monday as the court was reviewing an appeal in relation to their efforts to revoke permits for four palm oil companies whose proposed plantations threaten their customary forests. Indonesia began legally recognising customary forests in 2016.

“We have taken the long, difficult and expensive path from Tanah Papua [Papua homeland] to end up here in Indonesia’s capital Jakarta, asking the Supreme Court to restore our rights, and the land that was snatched from us when these palm oil companies were issued permits over it,” said Hendrikus “Franky” Woro, an Awyu Indigenous man…………………………







Destruction of Customary Forests in Papua Constitutes Ecocide, INFID Says  

Translator Najla Nur Fauziyah   Editor Laila Afifa  5 June 2024 

 

TEMPO.COJakarta - Executive Director of the International NGO Forum on Indonesian Development or INFID, Iwan Misthohizzaman, stated that clearing customary forests in Papua by abusing state permits is an act of ecocide and a violation of human rights. 

"Ecocide must be seen as a systematic, aggressive, massive, and planned form of attack on the environment," said Iwan in a written statement on Wednesday, June 5, 2024. Ecocide, he said, potentially destroys the environment’s capacity to support the living.

 

He said there are at least three elements of ecocide seen from today's climate change. First, exploitation of the environment leads to the extermination of nature. Second, the extermination is related to the erasure of people’s right to life. Third, the exploitation of natural resources leads to threats to human life, now and in the future. In the case of Papua, Iwan said “the three elements of ecocide were met" since forests in Papua are a source of livelihood and civilization for indigenous peoples. The customary forest destruction in Papua also reflects the government’s failure and irresponsible business practices which defy sustainable development goals. "So everything becomes overlapping, weak, and corrupted," he said. 

 

The Indigenous communities in Papua will experience immense loss of their living space if the palm oil companies’ operational permits are not revoked. Therefore, INFID urges the Supreme Court not to be part of the ecocide actors in the case of Papuan forests. The organization also asked the government to revoke the corporation's permit and return the customary forest to Papua’s Indigenous communities.

Meanwhile, INFID Human Rights and Democracy Program Officer Ari Wibowo believed the case of Papuan customary forest exploitation is part of human rights enforcement in Indonesia. He said this case is contrary to the three pillars of the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, namely protection of human rights by the state, respect for human rights by corporations, and reparation for human rights victims. Awyu Tribe in South Papua and the Moi Tribe in Southwest Papua are currently fighting against corporations that are set to destroy their forests. The operations of PT IAL and PT SAS have the potential to cause deforestation which will release 25 million tons of CO2 into the atmosphere and worsen the impact of the climate crisis.

Therefore, INFID urges President Jokowi and all relevant institutions to commit to fulfilling the human rights of the Indigenous Awyu and Moi ethnic communities.

NOVALI PANJI NUGROHO

 

 

  

#AllEyesonPapua goes viral to highlight threat to Indigenous forests from palm oil

Mongabay. by Hans Nicholas Jong on 7 June 2024




  • Two Indigenous tribes from Indonesia’s Papua region are calling for public support as the country’s Supreme Court hears their lawsuits against palm oil companies threatening to clear their ancestral forests.
  • Large swaths of Awyu customary forest lie inside three oil palm concessions that are part of the Tanah Merah megaproject, in Boven Digoel district, while part of the forest of the Moi tribe falls within a concession in Sorong district.
  • The cases now being heard mark the latest chapters in long-running legal battles by the tribes to prevent the concession holders from clearing the forests to make way for oil palms.
  • Using the hashtag #AllEyesonPapua, in a nod to the #AllEyesonRafah campaign, the tribes and their supporters have gone viral with their cause as they seek to save the forests on which their livelihoods — and lives — depend.

JAKARTA — A campaign calling for the protection of Indigenous peoples’ customary forests in Indonesia’s easternmost region of Papua has gone viral, with the campaign’s poster shared nearly 3 million times on Instagram. The poster contains a link into an online petition that calls for the revocation of an oil palm concession threatening to clear the ancestral forests of the Awyu tribe (also spelled Auyu). As of June 7, the petition has garnered more than 225,000 signatures, exceeding the campaigners’ initial goal of 200,000 signatures and nearing the new goal of 300,000.

 A video of a demonstration by the Indigenous Papuans outside Indonesia’s Supreme Court has been widely shared on social media as well. Made by the nonprofit WeSpeakUp.org, the video has been viewed more than 3.9 million times and shared nearly 15,000 times on TikTok. The campaign uses the hashtag #AllEyesonPapua, a riff on the #AllEyesonRafah hashtag used as a rallying cry to draw attention to Israeli attacks on civilian refuges in the southern Gaza city of Rafah.

https://www.tiktok.com/@wespeakuporg/video/7374034516425411846

The Papua campaign aims to raise awareness of the risk to tribal forests from clear-cutting inside four oil palm concessions in Boven Digoel and Sorong districts. The four companies plan to establish more than 140,000 hectares (346,000 acres) of plantations — an area twice the size of the Indonesian capital, Jakarta — that will overlap with the tribes’ lands………………………………………

https://news.mongabay.com/2024/06/alleyesonpapua-goes-viral-to-highlight-threat-to-indigenous-forests-from-palm-oil/




Govt says committed to protecting forests in Papua

 June 12, 2024 19:10 GMT+700

Traditional communities are pushing for the protection of forests from deforestation. In this regard, the government is on the same page …

Jakarta (ANTARA) - 

 

Indonesia's Environment and Forestry (LHK) Minister Siti Nurbaya Bakar has affirmed that the government and traditional communities share the same view about the need to protect customary forest lands in Papua. "Traditional communities are pushing for the protection of forests from deforestation. In this regard, the government is on the same page with them, since we are against the conversion of primary forests into palm oil plantations," she said in Jakarta on Wednesday. She made the statement in response to a viral digital poster with the tagline "All Eyes on Papua," which claims that 36 thousand hectares of forest land in Boven Digoel, South Papua, will be converted into a palm oil plantation.

On May 27, 2024, representatives of the South Papuan Awyu Tribe and West Papuan Moi tribes held a demonstration in front of the Supreme Court (MA), Jakarta, to oppose the land conversion, arguing that the lands are customary and serve as their source of life. Bakar said that the government has revoked the forest land utilization permits of two companies, namely PT MJR and PT KCP. The permits, which allowed the companies to convert the use of 38 thousand hectares of forest land in Boven Digoel, were granted during the 2010–2012 period. In response, the two corporations have filed a lawsuit against the government's decision with the State Administrative Court (PTUN). The legal proceedings are still on. According to Bakar, the permits were revoked in accordance with the Job Creation Law and Government Regulation No. 23 of 2021, which stipulates that no primary forests should be used for palm oil plantations. She underlined that the LHK Ministry is currently striving to officially grant the forest land in Boven Digoel the status of a customary forest . "We are in the process of declaring the land a customary forest," she stressed.
Translator: Prisca T, Tegar Nurfitra Editor: Rahmad Nasution








On April 9, 2024, the West Papua Project at the University of Wollongong launched the first screening in the inaugural national West Papua Mini Film Festival [130mb]. Here is the report from the event, featuring essays from the director and synopses of each film including a report by Victor Mambor on “How Information About Papua is Being Distorted” 







Decades of struggle rewarded: Legal recognition of indigenous lands in Konda District

7 June 2024  Human Rights Monitor

 

The local Government of Sorong Selatan Regency has officially recognized the indigenous peoples and customary territories of four sub-tribes in Konda District through a Regent Decree. The decree was presented by Regional Secretary on behalf of the Regent, Mr Samsudin Anggiluli. The recognized areas include 4,960.828 hectares for the Gemna sub-tribe, 4,674.579 hectares for the Nakna sub-tribe, 27,399.432 hectares for the Yaben sub-tribe, and 3,307.717 hectares for the Afsya sub-tribe. This recognition is a testament to the local wisdom and efforts preserved by these communities for generations, symbolizing the government’s commitment to protecting the environment and ensuring the welfare of indigenous peoples. The legalisation of customary forest areas in Konda District covers a total of 40,282.556 hectares, benefiting two major tribes, Tehit and Yaben, with support from Konservasi Indonesia (KI). Additionally, a decree was issued to the Knasaimos customary law community, covering 97,441 hectares in Saifi and Seremuk districts, aided by Greenpeace Indonesia and Bentara Papua. KI’s Programme Director, Mr Roberth Mandosir, emphasized the importance of mapping for recognition, protection, and future generations. Nakna sub-tribe representative, Mr Nikolas Mondar, expressed gratitude for the decree, acknowledging the valuable assistance of NGOs in understanding forest management. Mr Fredrik Sagisolo, Chairman of the Knasaimos Indigenous Peoples Fellowship Council, highlighted the significance of legal recognition for the survival and certainty of indigenous lands.


The Knasaimos community has fought for two decades to protect their lands from exploitation by loggers and palm oil companies. Their persistence included mapping their territories, processing sago for economic independence, and seeking legal recognition. Greenpeace Indonesia’s Papua Forest Campaigner, Mr Amos Sumbung, pointed out that while the Knasaimos have succeeded, many other indigenous communities continue to lose their lands to corporate interests. This recognition marks a milestone in their long struggle, demonstrating the ongoing fight for indigenous rights and the protection of their lands and biodiversity.

 



 

Military members alleged of occupying hospital in Paniai Regency – Patients leave hospital, all health services temporarily ceased
Human Rights Monitor 
27 May 2024 
Intensified armed clashes between Indonesian security forces and members of the West Papua National Liberation Army (TPNPB) in the Paniai since early May 2024 reportedly resulted in the temporary closure of the only general hospital in the regency. The closure of health facilities in conflict areas due to the armed conflict has occurred in various regencies across West Papua, leaving the residents in these areas isolated from access to fundamental health services.
On 24 May 2024, all patients were reportedly asked to leave the Uwibutu General Hospital (RSUD Paniai) in the town of Madi, while military members were taking control of the third floor of the building to overlook the Madi area to approach TPNPB fighters. On 26 May all patients and health workers reportedly left the hospital. All medical services were temporarily ceased. Six intensive care patients had to be transferred to other general hospitals in the neighbouring regency Deiyai, and others to Nabire Regency.      According to Dr Agus, Director of RSUD Paniai, the deployment of security forces was directly instructed by the Ministry of Health and coordinated with the Cenderawasi Military Command. He explained that the Paniai Hospital only followed instructions from Jakarta. Dr Kes denied that the patients were forced to leave, explaining that patients and health workers had voluntarily left the hospital afraid of being caught in the crossfire between the conflicting parties. XVII/Cenderawasih military command chief, Lieutenant-Colonel Candra Kurniawan, declared that the military members had been deployed to the hospital after receiving threats that the TPNPB had planned to burn the hospital to the ground.  On 27 May 2024, health workers gathered in front of the RSUD Paniai to protest against the occupation of the public health facility, demanding the immediate withdrawal of all security force members from the third floor of the Hospital. They added that all hospital staff will return to duty from 28 May 2024.
Patients leaving the Uwibutu Hospital in Paniai on 26 May 2024
Videos/photos.  
 https://humanrightsmonitor.org/general/military-members-alleged-of-occupying-hospital-in-paniai-regency-patients-leave-hospital-all-health-services-temporarily-ceased/





 

Indonesia’s massive sugar-bioethanol project in South Papua causes locals to fear exploitation 

Victor Mambor  2024.06.05 Jayapura, Indonesia

 

 

An aerial view of the location for the laboratory and nursery to support a sugar plantation and bioethanol project in Ngguti Bob, a village in Merauke regency, South Papua province, Indonesia, May 29, 2024.  Courtesy Yayasan Pusaka

 

 

Indonesia is going ahead with a project to convert millions of acres in Papua into a gigantic sugarcane plantation so the restive region can become self-sufficient in sugar and its related liquid fuel, bioethanol. But indigenous communities and environmentalists worry that the project in South Papua’s Merauke regency will lead to land grabs, ecological damage, and the destruction of traditional livelihoods. They have been scarred by previous failed ventures in this sprawling regency, notably the Merauke Integrated Food and Energy Estate (MIFEE), which they say cheated them on payments, broke promises, and disregarded local perspectives.

Investment Minister Bahlil Lahadalia has been touting the importance of involving local communities in investment plans, even as he has acknowledged the failures of previous projects in Papua. He insisted this time would be different.

“This program in Merauke has failed several times, right? There was MIFEE,” Bahlil told journalists during a visit to the project site last month. “I don’t want this one to suffer the same fate.”

 

He said one reason similar projects had failed before was the seeds used.  “We have learned from the mistakes of the past,” he said. “This time, we are addressing potential issues like seedling quality from the outset.” Faced with Indonesia’s rising consumption of sugar and its consequent increase in imports, President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo announced a plan in 2020 for the country to become self-sufficient in the commodity in a decade.  A key to achieving this and avoiding the pitfalls of previous attempts, he said then, was to expand cane area under state-run sugar mills beyond the traditional Java heartland to other regions and islands, the International Sugar Association said on its website..........

Other News

Crackdown in Kanaky on peaceful protestors

The French parliament recently passed reforms to local provincial elections in New Caledonia, allowing French residents who have lived there for 10 years to voteThis change to the electoral reform is against the terms of the 1998 Noumea Accord.  The Noumea Accord agreed that only the  Indigenous Kanak people and long-term residents would  be eligible to vote in provincial and local referendums. What started as peaceful protests against the changed law resulting in a crackdown by the French security forces on the protesters Similar  to the situation in West Papua where Indonesian security forces cracked down on peaceful demonstrations , the French security forces have also responded  with a heavy-handed approach, cracking down on protestors and arresting  hundreds. 


Pacific civil society groups including AWPA condemned  ‘heavy-handed’ French crackdown by French forces on the Kanaky People.  

https://asiapacificreport.nz/2024/05/19/pacific-civil-society-groups-condemn-heavy-handed-french-crackdown-over-kanaky-unrest/





Green Left interviewed David Robie on issues involved (below).  David  has contributed to journalism in New Zealand and the Asia-Pacific region for more than 50 years. He became a  be a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit,  for services to journalism and Asia-Pacific media education in the latest NZ honours list. Congratulations David.






French repressive policies in New Caledonia have ‘betrayed’ Kanak hopes

By Pacific Media Watch -

May 27, 2024

Alex Bainbridge talks to David Robie on Kanaky and settler colonialism.  

 Video: Green Left Programme: 28min

Video  https://asiapacificreport.nz/2024/05/27/french-repressive-policies-in-new-caledonia-have-betrayed-kanak-hopes/





 

Local media in West Papua also covered the Kanak story

Asosiasi West Papua Australia Mendesak Prancis Mendengarkan Suara Rakyat Kanak

 https://suarapapua.com/2024/05/20/asosiasi-west-papua-australia-mendesak-prancis-mendengarkan-suara-rakyat-kanak/







and on the 10 June West Papuans took to the streets in a show of support for Kanaky.

































9 dead since start of New Caledonia unrest

RNZ Pacific 12 June 2024



This photograph shows a Kanak flag waving next to a burning vehicle at an independantist roadblock at La Tamoa, in the commune of Paita, France's Pacific territory of New Caledonia on 19 May, 2024. Photo: DELPHINE MAYEUR / AFP

https://www.rnz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/519351/9-dead-since-start-of-new-caledonia-unrest



French President Emmanuel Macron said on Wednesday he had decided to "suspend", not to withdraw, New Caledonia's controversial constitutional amendment 

which triggered violent unrest in the French Pacific archipelago

During a press conference in Paris, the French President mentioned all of the now-dissolved National Assembly's "pending projects", saying "my wish is that they can be resumed (after the snap elections) once a majority is confirmed, enlarged or formed with other partners".

https://www.rnz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/519431/macron-new-caledonia-changes-suspended-not-withdrawn




Solidarity in Vanuatu

Vanuatu's historic solidarity march and petition for Kanak people

By Nicholas Mwai    Jun 8, 2024

 

 

               Crowds getting ready for the peaceful parade at Saralana. More photos on page 13 By Nicholas Mwai


Led by the Malvatumauri Council of Chiefs (MCC), Vanuatu citizens in Port Vila organised a peaceful parade from Saralana Park to the French Embassy yesterday. 

The event aimed to show solidarity with the Kanak people in New Caledonia.

“This will be marked in the history of Kanak people. A similar parade was held in 1980 when Vanuatu gained its independence,” Chief Paul Robert Ravun, President of the MCC said. “Today, we march again, led by the chiefs, to honor our friends, the Kanaks, who have longed for the same privilege but have not yet achieved it.

“At this stage, we hear about the ongoing situation causing many deaths. As part of the Melanesian countries, Vanuatu wants to show the same respect through a peaceful parade, expressing our condolences to our brothers in Kanaky, some of whom have lost their lives."

The parade was supported by a petition signed by the MCC, Vanuatu Christian Council (VCC), Vanuatu National Council of Women (VNCW), Vanuatu National Youth Council (VNYC), Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), and various Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs). The petition was presented to the Deputy French ambassador and included the following translated points:……………..

https://www.dailypost.vu/news/vanuatus-historic-solidarity-march-and-petition-for-kanak-people/article_d0754f47-57f2-5e67-8217-7088b5aa2702.html




TPNPB OPM Requests Govt to Open Access for Human Rights Agencies to Papua  

 Translator Najla Nur Fauziyah.  Editor Laila Afifa  10 May 2024 

 

TEMPO.COJakarta - The West Papua National Liberation Army-Free Papua Movement(TPNPB OPM) asked the Indonesian government to open access for human rights agencies, both national and international, to Papua. This request was the result of an aerial military attack that was said to have burned down three civilian houses in Pogapa Village, causing them to flee to Sanepa, Bilae, and some other villages. "The Indonesian government (shall) immediately open humanitarian access to national and international human rights agencies to investigate civilians affected by the armed conflict in Papua," said TPNPB OPM spokesperson, Sebby Sambom, in a written statement to Tempo, on Thursday, May 9, 2024.

 

TPNPB OPM requests the Indonesian government to guarantee the rights of civilians in refugee camps and vacate civilian houses and government buildings used as military posts in Intan Jaya and areas of armed conflict in Papua. The attack which was said to have been carried out brutally was reported by the Ogobogo Battalion Commander and Operations Commander Keny Tipagau as well as TPNPB OPM soldiers on the battlefield in Pogapa, Intan Jaya, Central Papua. It was carried out after an armed group attacked the Homeyo Sector Police headquarters and Military District Command Post 1705-05/Homeyo from April 30 to May 1, 2024. TPNPB OPM asked the Indonesian government to take responsibility for the burning of three civilian houses. They asked the Indonesian government to open access to human rights agencies to inspect directly the situation and the refugees resulting from the armed conflict in Pogapa Village. According to Sebby, the Indonesian government under the leadership of President Joko Widodo or Jokowi and the TNI Commander has deployed military helicopters since the 4th and 5th of May as a retaliatory attack. "In this case, the President of Indonesia and the TNI Commander (shall)immediately clarify the report in accordance with international humanitarian law standards," said Sebby. 

HAN REVANDA PUTRA

 






West Papua National Committee holds 6th leadership meeting in Jayapura

Suara Papua – May 20, 2024

 

 


          KNPB central leadership issuing press release after 6th leadership meeting in Jayapura – May 15, 2024 (SP)


 

Jayapura – The West Papua National Committee (KNPB), based on its organisational mechanisms, held its 6th Leadership Meeting (Rapim) at Port Numbay in Jayapura, Papua, between May 13 and 15.

The meeting, which was attended by 32 regional KNPB administrators and consulates, discussed and decided on various internal organisational issue both in Papua and the struggle of the Papuan nation internationally.

In a statement, KNPB Central Chairperson Warpo Sampari Wetipo said that during the three-day meeting, they decided on eight positions and solutions.

Among other things, he said that they called on the Papuan people to increase solidarity in the collective struggle, to anticipate patterns of division and to participate in organising the struggles of political and sectoral organisations.

In addition to this, he said, looking at the existing dynamics of the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP), the leadership meeting decided that the KNPB will leave this situation and take a permanent position as a national media outside of the results of the ULMWP official Summit (KTT) in Vanuatu and the temporary government's unilateral congress in Sentani. In taking a position as a media, the KNPB will play a role of mediation in overcoming all divisions in the struggle both at home and abroad.

"In order to coordinate the agenda of struggle internationally, both legally and politically, we ask all leaders and diplomats abroad to actively coordinate with each other in order to unite the strategy of lobbying and diplomacy", Wetipo said on Monday May 20.

The leadership meeting also agreed to push for the Nieuw Guinea Raad (the New Guinea Council, NGR) as a democratic institution to remain within the ULMWP.

The KNPB emphasised that the West Papua National Liberation Army (TPNPB) is a national liberation army, so it decided and asks that the TPNPB continue to improve its function of defending the ordinary people.

The following is the full statement of the results of the KNPB's 6th Leadership Meeting on May 13-15, 2024:

Seeing the threat of Indonesian colonialism that is so massive in West Papua, with a pattern and strategy of divide and rule which is making the threat of genocide, ecocide and ethnocide increasingly apparent, the Rapim reiterates that national liberation is an urgent agenda for the Papuan nation. Therefore, we call in the people of Papua to increase solidarity and mutual struggle, anticipate the patterns of divide and rule by the colonisers and participate in organising themselves in the organisations of political and sectoral struggle in the land of Papua.
 

The KNPB continues to encourage open consolidation from within and outside the country through the Papua People's Petition (PRP), the pre-KTT ULMWP, the ULMWP Summit and ULMWP Working Meeting (Raker). In its development, we view that there have been various enemy infiltrations and there is a lack of good faith from several foreign and domestic leaders to unite to coordinate the structure and agenda. In addition to the indecisive detection and strict resistance to the divisive efforts managed by the enemy, this has also been caused more by changes in the form of the ULMWP from an open democracy (coordinative) to semi-constitutional (UUDS) and the declaration of the provisional government, where factional political ambitions played a greater role than prioritising the consolidation of a greater unity of struggle.
 

The KNPB views that both the official ULMWP results of the ULMWP Summit in Vanuatu and the unilateral government of the ULMWP maintain the same form of constitution (UUDS) even though this is only distinguished by the terms organisation and government. The KNPB Rapim views the contents of the ULMWP Constitution starting from the opening concepts that do not accommodate all the differences that shape the characteristics of the nationality of Papua, to the contents of various chapter that do not represent the interests of all groups in the struggle, as not being a rule for struggle that should be used in a period of struggle.
 

Looking at the recent dynamics of the ULMWP, the KNPB Rapim decided that the KNPB will leave this situation and take a permanent position as a national media outside the official ULMWP Summit in Vanuatu and the results of the unilateral government congress of the provisional government in Sentani. By placing itself as a media, the KNPB will play the role of mediation in all divisions of struggle both at home and abroad, namely by actively building coordination between all parties and participating in the agenda of the joint struggle regardless of their respective factional roots.
 

In order to coordinate the agenda of struggle internationally both legally and politically, we ask all leaders and diplomats abroad to actively coordinate with each other to unite the strategy of lobbing and its diplomacy.
 

The Rapim agreed to push for the Nieuw Guinea Raad as a democratic institution to remain within the ULMWP in order to play its role of conveying the ideas of the unity of struggle in ULMWP.
 

The Rapim reiterated that the TPNPB is a national liberation army, so that the KNPB Rapim decided and is asking that the TPNPB continued to improve its function of defense of the people and all organisations of struggle without political factionalism. The Rapim asks that in the TPNPB guerrilla struggle consistently prioritise humanitarian principles in accordance with humanitarian law.
 

The KNPB Rapim is of the view that president elect Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto is a symbol of the continued power of colonialism, capitalism and militarism in the land of Papua. The KNPB together with the Papuan people will not remain silent. The Papuan nation will rise up to continue the struggle in a peaceful and dignified manner. Therefore, we ask for the solidarity of the Indonesian people and the world that loves humanity and independence to participate in supporting the struggle for the national liberation of West Papua.

[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "KNPB Gelar Rapim VI, Ini Delapan Poin Keputusannya".]

Source:  https://suarapapua.com/2024/05/20/knpb-gelar-rapim-vi-ini-delapan-poin-keputusannya/

 









Friends of West Papua launched in Scottish Parliament

ULMWP. May 10, 2024  

 

 


 

Event attendees supporting the SFWP launch

A new Scottish chapter of the International Parliamentarians for West Papua (IPWP) launched yesterday (10th May 2024) at the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh. The Scottish Friends of West Papua launch was hosted by Bill Kidd MSP, and addressed by ULMWP President Benny Wenda, ULMWP Prime Minister Edison Waromi, and IPWP Chair Alex Sobel MP. The meeting was the fourth held as part of a new IPWP campaign to increase the pressure on Indonesia facilitate a UN High Commissioner for Human Rights fact-finding mission immediately. Previous meetings in the UKEU, and Dutch Parliaments highlighted Indonesia’s ongoing refusal to allow the UN into West Papua. Alongside these Parliamentary hearings, the IPWP has launched the Brussels Declaration accusing Indonesia of blocking a UN visit and calling for urgent international intervention.

Indonesia first invited then-High Commissioner Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein to West Papua in 2018, but have continually failed to make good on that promise, despite over 100 UN member states calling for a visit to happen. In the six years since, over 100,000 Papuans have been internally displaced by Indonesian military operations, with at least 1200 civilians dying as a result. President Wenda spoke about the progress of the campaign for a UN visit, as well as the current military escalation in West Papua. Alex Sobel discussed the importance of Parliamentarians signing the Brussels Declaration, along with the IPWP call for the creation of a Special Rapporteur for Indonesia.

ULMWP President Benny Wenda: “As I speak to you now, West Papuans are living under a shadow. We are scared of the future under new Indonesian President, the war criminal Prabowo Subianto. For West Papuans, this means the ghost of the dictator Suharto is back. Prabowo has never been held accountable or punished for his atrocities in East Timor and West Papua. He has committed massacres and never apologised. In his election campaign, he said that he will pursue a military approach in West Papua. We know that the situation will only get worse under this rule. 

West Papua needs short-term friends and long-term friends. We hope that Scottish Parliamentarian can join the Interantional Parliamentarians for West Papua and add their voice to the growing cry for a UN Human Rights visit to West Papua. We have been isolated and voice for a long time and we need supporters to speak for us. Just like the Basque and Catalan Parliaments, we hope the Scottish Parliament can make their own call for a UN visit to West Papua.

Any Scottish Parliamentarian who wishes to sign the Brussels declaration should contact office@ipwp.org.



Tragedy in PNG

'Mass burial site': PNG landslide death toll remains unknown

RNZ Pacific12 June 2024

The number of people killed and displaced in the horrific landslide in Papua New Guinea's Enga Province remains unknown. Hundreds are thought to have been buried in their sleep when it hit Yambali Village in the early hours of 24 May. In the days after the terrifying landslide, survivors, locals and recovery teams worked around the clock to find any survivors and to recover bodies.

https://www.rnz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/519363/mass-burial-site-png-landslide-death-toll-remains-unknown

 

 

 

Opinion pieces/reports/media releases etc.


Previous update

https://awpasydneynews.blogspot.com/2024/04/awpa-west-papua-update-no-3-18-april.html


 

France lost the plot’ – journalist David Robie on Kanaky New Caledonia riots

https://www.rnz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/517440/france-lost-the-plot-journalist-david-robie-on-kanaky-new-caledonia-riots


 

New dawn in fight against OPM in Papua  

https://en.antaranews.com/news/311397/new-dawn-in-fight-against-opm-in-papua

 

 

Australian author leads silence protest over ‘blood debt’ owed to Papuans

https://asiapacificreport.nz/2024/04/21/australian-author-leads-silent-protest-over-blood-debt-owed-to-papuans/

 

West Papua accusations fly at Australia, US

https://www.rnz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/515772/west-papua-accusations-fly-at-australia-us



Aktivis Papua sampaikan solidaritas pada bangsa Kanak yang ingin merdeka dari Prancishttps://jubi.id/pasifik/2024/aktivis-papua-sampaikan-solidaritas-pada-bangsa-kanak-yang-ingin-merdeka-dari-prancis/?fbclid=IwZXh0bgNhZW0CMTEAAR3T6SzSU2RMUINfzC5zsvrBz5JctghVUUg7hgP6rtqFrwsssYCEA3OVY0I_aem_Acpg8BdVtT00i1DMFmEY038RHAG4-CVvOKpagk8WgWtvYyoYm2w8q5XLiEb0BzV3RorMwC-qI4ag1q0qjiJ5l_d-

 

 

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