Saturday, June 14, 2014

1) NZ ambassador defends Papua programme

1) NZ ambassador defends Papua programme
2) NZ-Indonesia bond called constructive
3) Solving Conflict in Papua, South Moluccas
4) Handling Prabowo – Australia’s  dilemma

5) KNPB: Terror Pangdam TNI Old Songs

1) NZ ambassador defends Papua programme

Updated at 12:43 pm today

New Zealand's ambassador to Indonesia has defended the intent behind a planned police training programme in Papua region.
David Taylor has responded to concern expressed by Indonesian police chiefs that New Zealand had a hidden motive behind the planned the US$5.4 million community policing training programme which Jakarta recently shelved.
The Jakarta Globe reports Mr Taylor saying New Zealand has only ever worked at the request of the Indonesian government.
Ambassador Taylor says Indonesian police informed their New Zealand counterparts several months ago that the project would be pulled.
However, he says the cancellation was not expressed in terms of concern about motives but rather in proximity to Indonesia's elections this year and related security concerns.
Mr Taylor acknowledges that New Zealand turned down an offer to train Indonesian police in Java or Makassar but said that was because the programme stressed practical training.
Meanwhile, a journalist and academic specialising in West Papua says New Zealand's efforts to train police in the province were a genuine attempt, but were doomed to fail.
Paul Bensemann, who travelled to Indonesia's Papua region to research his thesis last year, says that while that kind of policing may work in New Zealand, it's naive to think that it would have worked in Papua.
"There are still people being shot on the streets for raising independence flags, so it's a long way from walking the beat in a small country town."
A pilot version of the programme was held in Papua in 2009 and 2010, and deemed a success by New Zealand police.
Paul Bensemann says the West Papuans he spoke to about the police training programme were worried that Jakarta was using the programme as a way of appeasing the international community while security forces were mounting another crackdown on Papuan separatists.
West Papua is the scene of a separatist conflict that has seen thousands killed since the former dutch colony was controversially annexed in the 1960s

2) NZ-Indonesia bond called constructive

Updated at 10:37 am today

New Zealand's Foreign Affairs Minister, Murray McCully, says his country has a constructive relationship with Indonesia, despite its ending a New Zealand-funded initiative to train police in the troubled region of Papua.
The more than $US5 million project was due to start this year but was cancelled last month, reportedly because of fears New Zealand has a hidden agenda.
Activists who opposed the initiative in the first place because of human rights abuses by the Indonesian police, have called on the New Zealand Government to take a stronger stance.
Murray McCully says New Zealand regularly raises the issue of human rights with Indonesia, but prefers to work with the country rather than criticise from a distance.

3) Solving Conflict in Papua, South Moluccas

               Women selling fruits and vegetables at a street market in Timika, Papua. (JG Photo/Jurnasyanto Sukarno)
Jakarta. This year’s presidential election has roused Indonesia’s young, vibrant democracy in ways no previous vote has done before. As the two-candidate race is getting closer, it captivates millions at home and abroad.
But as the republic seems to flourish, freedoms seen as fundamental to a functioning democracy are continuously denied across the archipelago. Whether this will change under either Joko Widodo, commonly known as Jokowi, or Prabowo Subianto remains to be seen.
Indonesia’s easternmost provinces of West Papua and Papua have long seen a low-level insurgency by the Free Papua Movement (OPM) and other armed groups who have fought for independence since 1963.
In the Maluku province, composed of the southern Moluccan islands and centered on Ambon, there is a history of small protests to re-establish the Republic of the South Moluccas (RMS), which was crushed by Indonesian forces in 1963.
Both movements are known for their wide usage of two banned symbols: the Benang Raja, or “rainbow” flag of the RMS in Maluku, and the “Morning Star” flag of the formerly independent West Papua in Papua.
Many peaceful protesters raise these flags as a symbol of nonviolent resistance to the Indonesian state, yet they are prosecuted under anti-terror laws because the authorities view their actions as separatist activities. This is a violation of freedom of expression, which a democracy should guarantee.
Articles 106 and 107 of the Indonesian criminal code set a punishment of life imprisonment or a maximum of 20 years in jail for “attempt[s] undertaken with intent to bring the territory of the state wholly or partially under foreign domination or to separate part thereof” and for “attempt[s] undertaken with the intent to cause a revolution.”
On June 23, 2010, Human Rights Watch (HRW) released a report on the imprisonment of over 100 peaceful political demonstrators in Indonesian prisons in Java, Maluku and Papua.
The report accuses members of the Indonesian Military (TNI), the National Police, and the police’s counter-terrorism wing Densus 88 of torturing protesters who raised the illegal flags during the independence anniversaries of the defunct West Papuan and South Moluccan republics.
The UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention issued its legal opinion in 2011 that the police’s arrest of Papuan political activist Filep Karma in 2004, for raising the Morning Star flag, constituted a violation of international law.
“The UN group believes Indonesian courts do not proportionally interpret the written law,” Indonesian human rights journalist Andreas Harsono told the Jakarta Globe on Thursday. “Most of these prisoners are in jail for treason, they are not violent and not a serious threat at all.”
When asked about the HRW report’s accusation of police torture, National Police spokesman Boy Rafil Amar said “the police in Papua and Maluku are working based on standard operating procedures.”
“The police is working based on the law against separatist activity,” he added. “They are against Indonesian law so we just investigate based on Indonesian law.”
While armed groups such as the OPM do pose a military threat, Andreas believes that the flag-raisers pose “no threat at all towards Indonesian sovereignty.”
Of 197 UN members, Vanuatu alone recognizes West Papua as a separate country, after passing a recognition bill two years ago. Indonesia’s embassy in Canberra, which is also accredited to Vanuatu, was not available for comment.
Joko is the only presidential candidate in Indonesian history to have visited Papua during a campaign, having visited the province last week.
He announced that, if elected, he would lift restrictions dating back to 1963 that deny foreign journalists, diplomats, and non-governmental organizations entry to the restive region.
“This is positive because it has widened the debate on the elections, involving not only the more populous regions of Indonesia but also the least populous,” Andreas said. “Electorally, South Maluku and Papua only have 5 million voters.”
Outgoing President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono also promised to remove restrictions on foreign media in Papua, yet nothing has changed under his administration. In 2007, he passed the 77/2007 presidential decree that made lifting the RMS or Morning Star flags a crime punishable by life in prison.
“Those opposed to opening up Papua are military intelligence,” Andreas said. “The military, police, and intelligence have their own self-interest in Papua, they want promotions, a ladder to climb to a better career.”
“An area within Indonesia can only be closed if there is an emergency, but there is no emergency in Papua,” he added. “Some high ranking government officials told me they agree Papua should be opened up, but they cannot make this decision by themselves because they need the NGOs and the media to educate the public and put pressure on the military.”
A spokesperson for the military was not available for comment.
The Free West Papua Campaign is a pro-independence movement led by Benny Wenda, who organizes the group’s activities from abroad. It opened offices in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands last year, and another in Perth two months ago.
A spokesperson from the Australian Embassy in Jakarta told the Jakarta Globe that while the Australian government was aware of the office’s existence, it had no involvement in its opening and that its “long-standing position on Indonesia’s Papuan provinces is that it unreservedly recognizes Indonesia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.”
On April 25 this year, Maluku Police arrested Simon Saiya, the Ambon-based leader of the Maluku Sovereignty Front (FKM), an outlawed separatist organization headed by Alexander Manuputty, who is in exile in the United States.
Simon had been wanted since 2007, when his followers unfurled an RMS flags at a National Family Day celebration attended by Yudhoyono. The TNI and police arrested them, in line with the anti-terror laws.
Looking for signs
As human rights abuses continue in the run-up to the election, foreign and local analysts will be looking for signs from Joko or Prabowo that the situation will change under them.
Joko’s running-mate, former vice president Jusuf Kalla, has been touted by Indonesian politicians as a possible mediator for the Papua conflict, given his experience in negotiating peace accords in Aceh and the religious conflicts in Central Sulawesi and Maluku.
However, in a 2010 letter, OPM military leader Thadius Magai Yogi rejected Kalla as an intermediary, instead calling on international organizations to mediate an end to the conflict.
On the other hand, John Wattilete, president of the self-declared RMS government-in-exile in the Netherlands, told a Dutch newspaper in 2009 that he would be open to special autonomy for Maluku instead of outright independence.
Haris Azhar, chairman of the Commission for the Disappeared and Victims of Violence (Kontras), praised Joko’s approach, but noted that he has “people standing in his circle with a negative record” in regard to human rights and Papua.
Former president Megawati heads Joko’s party, the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P), and is suspected by many Indonesians of controlling the Jakarta governor and presidential candidate from behind the scenes.
In 2003, she passed a law that divided Papua into three provinces, later reduced to two by a court ruling, and directly contradicted former president Wahid’s 2001 law granting special autonomy to Papua.
The measure, although popular in Papua’s far west for bringing in more government jobs, splintered the territorial unity that was intended to underpin the autonomy of Papua.
Joko’s rival Prabowo is often criticized for his alleged human rights violations in East Timor and Jakarta. Joko may be considered clean himself, but he is supported by several figures with histories similar to that of his competitor.
Former general Ryamizard Ryacudu, who supports Joko, was involved in the TNI’s heavy-handed campaigns against the secessionists in Aceh. In 2003, he told Tempo that the killer of Papuan independence leader Theys Eluay was a “hero.”
The People’s Conscience Party (Hanura) forms part of Joko’s coalition. Its leader, former general Wiranto, is seen as the chief architect behind the TNI’s brutal retreat from East Timor in 1999, and was accused of fomenting violence between Christians and Muslims in Ambon during the deadly sectarian conflict that raged from 1999 to 2002.
As for Prabowo, Andreas believes that “there is nothing new: he has said what was said by other presidents in the past, that Papua is an integral part of Indonesia.”
In spite of Joko’s relative strengths in human rights — compared to Prabowo’s emphasis on security — Haris says he did not know “how far they would put aside their interests to go on with solving the genuine problems in [conflict areas].”
“For the future, it’s very important to ask these two candidates how they will deal with the conflict and post-conflict areas,” Haris told the Jakarta Globe. “We request that the national election commission open a debate on human rights and on the issue of peace in conflict areas.”
Indonesia has made incredible strides in democracy since the Suharto era. The mere fact that last Monday’s presidential debate featured Kalla asking Prabowo a difficult question about his checkered past is a positive sign for the future.
But as long as anti-terrorism laws are still used to sentence harmless people who raise flags, as long as Papua remains closed off to reporters and diplomats, and as long as there is an absence of a lively discussion on past and present human rights abuses in this country, there is more progress to be made.
Both Joko and Prabowo’s coalitions have skeletons in their closets. Time will tell if they can match their electrifying campaign with an equally assertive push to protect the rights of all citizens — regardless of geographic origin.
4) Handling Prabowo – Australia’s  dilemma
Duncan Graham, Malang, East Java | Opinion | Sat, June 14 2014, 10:13 AM
In a secret underground vault somewhere in the Australian Capital Territory sit two documents — Plan J and Plan P. One will be unsealed after July 9, the other shredded, though their preambles are identical.

The opened document will first need a brisk shake in the Canberra frost to sanitize some of international diplomacy’s most mouldy clich├ęs. Nonetheless they’re the yeast that helps keep world peace.

Australia will welcome the Indonesian people’s choice; the prime minister and opposition leader will personally phone to congratulate the winner; the government will look forward to a long and amicable relationship; the foreign minister will travel to Indonesia as soon as practically possible to discuss matters of mutual interest.

It’s also common to offer an invitation to visit. Read carefully to see if one is included — a good barometer to gauge the political climate.

That’s where any similarity in the two documents ends, because Plan P deals with responses to the election of military man President Prabowo Subianto, Plan J to the victory of civilian President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo. The first paper is thick and full of appendices — the second brief.

Should the former Army’s Special Forces (Kopassus) commander win, then Australian-Indonesian relationships, reportedly now back on track following meetings between Prime Minister Tony Abbott and President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono in Batam last week, will be in danger of a major derailment.

To understand why Australians are concerned about Prabowo, read Professor Gerry van Klinken’s forensic biography in the prestigious journal Inside Indonesia (

Elsewhere it has been reported that Prabowo is on a US visa blacklist for alleged human rights abuses; Australia is believed to have the same prohibition, as Canberra usually trails Washington.

If Prabowo is Indonesians’ democratic choice there’s no way the triumphant head of a nation of 240 million and the world’s most populous Islamic country is going to be marched into an airport detention cell like an asylum-seeker should he front a Sydney immigration desk minus visa.

Of course Prabowo might take the position of US comedian Groucho Marx: “I don’t want to belong to any club that will accept me as a member,” and snub his neighbor. This would leave Australian diplomats counting floor tile patterns in an antechamber off the Presidential Palace waiting room every time there’s a need to discuss urgent matters.

Should Prabowo fly south the terms used to justify stamping his passport will be collectors’ items — allegations unproven, changing times, practical considerations, national interest — but the language wouldn’t be so mealy mouthed once his limo leaves airport security.

Indonesia’s fourth president, the late Abdurrahman “Gus Dur” Wahid, and present incumbent Yudhoyono were enthusiastically accepted, with the latter addressing the federal Parliament in 2010, giving a splendid speech that still resonates. Soeharto was never welcome, making only one known official visit (to Townsville, northeast Queensland) in 1975.

The only way Prabowo could be universally applauded would be through engineering the peaceful cessation of hostilities in West Papua, settlement of just concerns and robust prosecution of the military involved in alleged human rights abuses.

As the former Kopassus commander’s record has been force first, a speedy and fair resolution of the conflict seems unlikely. He has already been quoted wanting a return to an era where the police are feared by the citizenry.

With Prabowo as president, it’s unlikely Abbott would be praising a “statesman” and “good friend” (the words he’s used for Yudhoyono). Nor would Foreign Minister Julie Bishop be predicting relationships will “strengthen, broaden and deepen”.

The trouble with democracy is that sometimes electorates install leaders that outsiders who claim to be democrats don’t like. The Lebanese election of candidates from Hezbollah, a terrorist organization in the eyes of Western countries, is a classic example.

After the Indonesian election, the US and Australia will recite the diplomat’s pledge: We’ll work with the people’s choice. But if that man is Prabowo, relations across the Arafura Sea could become choppy indeed, making the waves from revelations that Australian spies tapped the phone of Yudhoyono’s wife Ibu Ani Yudhoyono just gentle ripples.

Imagine President Prabowo’s motorcade in Australia driving through gauntlets of protestors, his speeches heckled, demonstrators in pursuit, flags burned.

Indonesian sensitivities would be inflamed, and the air thick with the haze of retaliatory threats.

The late Ali Alatas, longtime foreign minister, once described Timor Leste — then the major problem in Australian-Indonesian relations — as “the pebble in the shoe”. With West Papua the irritant is set to become a rock.

The official bipartisan position is that “Australia is fully committed to Indonesia’s territorial integrity and national unity, including its sovereignty over the Papua provinces.”

However, minor parties like the Greens, aren’t bound by such statements. They are backed by churches, non-government organizations and an active separatist lobby.

These groups may be small, but they are shrill and usually get traction in the media. The Morning Star flag, banned in Indonesia, flutters regularly in Australia.

Then there’s International Parliamentarians for West Papua (IPWP), established in Britain in 2008, with members from many nations. The Australians include Melissa Parke from Fremantle, Western Australia, Queensland Senator Claire Moore and Laurie Ferguson from Sydney. All are feisty members of Labor, the second largest party in Parliament.

The IPWP is pledged to “support the inalienable right of self determination for the people of West Papua”.

This is a highly provocative statement. Most Indonesians are committed to the “unitary state” and fear separatism.

As president, Jokowi would have no blood on his hands. He’d likely find friends everywhere in Australia, not just because he appears to be a mild-mannered reformist, but for what he’s not: an authoritarian Soeharto-era leftover.

He’s already been to West Papua and promised access by foreign media, though that pledge could be thwarted by the military.

Whatever the outcome, Indonesians are embracing democracy and doing it their way. Australians are the ones who’ll have to adjust to the new people moving in next door, whoever they are.

The writer is a journalist based in Malang, East Java.
A google translate of posting on KNPB webpage. Be-aware google translate can be a bit erratic.
Original bahasa link at
5) KNPB: Terror Pangdam TNI Old Songs
June 13, 2014 By: admin Category: KNPB Center, News

TNI Statement
Jayapura, KNPBnews - Responding to terror statement regional commander (Regional Commander) XVII / Cenderawasih, Maj. Gen. Drs. Christian Zebua, MM that the TNI would utterly destroy anyone who boycotted the presidential election later, the West Papua National Committee [KNPB] responded coldly. KNPB stated that the old songs and inviting people to remain boycott.

KNPB through a spokesman, bazookas Logo submitted its response through the official web KNPBnews that, the people of West Papua are already familiar with the statements and acts of terror like that.

"Statement of terror as it was an old song, KNPB as the people of West Papua media remains to consolidate to boycott the Presidential election of colonial Indonesia," said Logo.

President to be selected, connect logo, a colonial Indonesian president, not the President of West Papua, Papuan people therefore should boycott.

Meanwhile, Chairman of 1 KNPB Center, Kossay Agus said that KNPB not boycott a violent manner.

"KNPB menyeruhkan people not to boycott the violent means, but by not participating in the Presidential Election Indonesian colonial possession," said Kossay from NHQ KNPB, Waena.

As reported Cenderawasih Pos daily newspaper, issue of Thursday (12/6) yesterday, Commander XVII of Paradise, Christian Zebua insisted that the military will crush anyone who boycotted the presidential election later.

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