Monday, February 20, 2012

AWPA letter to Minister for Foreign Affairs below.

AWPA letter to Minister for Foreign Affairs below. 

We urge people to write along similar lines.

Australia West Papua Association (Sydney)

PO Box 28, Spit Junction, Sydney, Australia 2088

The Hon Kevin Rudd MP
Minister for Foreign Affairs
Parliament House 
ACT 2600
21 February 2012
Fear for the safety of West Papuan political prisoners
Dear Mr Rudd,
I am writing to you on behalf of the Australia West Papua Association in Sydney concerning the five West Papuan men who have been charged with treason because of their involvement in the 3rd Papuan People's Congress which was held between the 17 and 19 October 2011.

Shortly after the Congress and as part of a celebration, the Morning Star flag was raised and a declaration of Independence read out.  Indonesian security forces accompanied by armoured vehicles immediately moved in to break up the gathering firing live rounds resulting in six people been killed. The security forces also used batons, bamboo poles and the butts of rifles during the arrest of up to 300 delegates resulting in serious injuries. Five people were charged with treason.   They are Forkorus Yaboisembet, Edison Gladius Waromi, Agust M. Sananay Kraar, Selpius Bobii, and Dominikus Surabat. The trial against five Papuan activists began on Monday 30 January.
On Saturday the 18 February, the security forces in full riot equipment swept through the Abepura prison where the men are detained. They removed the prisoners  belongings including books, letters, plates, glasses and intimidated the prisoners. They also told the prisoners if there was any disturbance at their trial they would be removed from West Papua to stand trial elsewhere.

AWPA is greatly concerned for the safety of these men as many reports have stated that the security forces use torture to intimidate or extract information from prisoners in West Papua. We point out at no time did these men commit violence and they simply expressed peacefully their views on the future of West Papua as is their right under  Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

We urge you to contact the Indonesian President asking that he guarantee the safety of the prisoners and to immediately release all West Papuan political prisoners unconditionally.
A true democracy does not jail people simply because thy expressed a political opinion.
Yours sincerely
Joe Collins
AWPA (Sydney)


Contact details

Minister for Foreign Affairs, The Hon Kevin Rudd MP

Minister for Foreign Affairs
The Hon Kevin Rudd MP
House of Representatives
Parliament House
Canberra ACT 2600
  • Fax: (02) 6273 4112
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