Tuesday, December 13, 2016

1) Indonesia Gets a Chance to Prove Its More Journalist-Friendly in 2017

2) This strategy Foreign Ministry on the issue of Papua, Melanesia and the Pacific
3) Government should be ‘more patient, less reactive’ on Papua issue
1) Indonesia Gets a Chance to Prove Its More Journalist-Friendly in 2017

The country, known for its harsh censorship practices against journalists, will host UNESCO's World Press Freedom Day celebrations in May

Guest Contributor  Follow Dec 13, 2016 11:47 AM EST

By Colette Davidson
When journalist and media activist Victor Mambour wants information from inside Papua, Indonesia, he knows how to get it - he has to ask someone who isn't Papuan.
"I'm Papuan so when something happens, I ask the police about it but they don't give me an answer," says Mambour. "My friend, who isn't Papuan, can ask the same thing and get an answer."
The situation epitomizes how Mambour has had to operate in order to fill the pages of his Papuan-based newspaper, Jubi.
"If you want to be a real journalist in Papua and committed to ethics, it's very hard, from the reporting to the salary," says Mambour. "There's a double standard for Papuan journalists and a lot of discrimination."
The Indonesian government has used the long-standing conflict in Papua to justify implementing harsh rules in the region, offering limited opportunities and restricted access to journalists. While authorities may withhold information from local Papuan journalists--who are identified by their family name or physical characteristics--foreign journalists have little chance of even accessing the region.
But while the lack of access to Papua means that coverage of the region remains limited, some say that the coming year will be a test for Indonesia as it gets set to host UNESCO's World Press Freedom Day celebrations on May 3, 2017. Many Papuan journalists say they are fed up with the censorship, self-censorship and dangers that go along with reporting from and about the region and they are ready to let the world know.
Papua and West Papua have a long-standing history of human rights abuses, ever since the Free Papua Movement began its low-level guerrilla war against the Indonesian state in the 1960s. Since then, West Papuans have protested for independence, accusing the Indonesian government of violence and abuses of freedom of expression. In an attempt to mask the suppression of Papuan nationalism, the Indonesian government has long made outside access to Papua a challenge.
For journalists who do tackle the task of reporting on Papua, the primary focus is often related to the environment, with topics on resource extraction or corruption--topics very difficult and dangerous to report on.
Recently, the Indonesian government looked ready to open access to Papua, when President Joko Widodo made an announcement in May 2015 stating that the government would lift restrictions on foreign media access. But Phelim Kine, the Deputy Asia Director of Human Rights Watch in New York, says that the announcement hasn't pulled much weight.

"It was never followed up by any written decree, so while it was a rhetorical opening to Papua, foreign media still can't get in," says Kine. "And if they do get in, they're subject to surveillance and harassment that makes effective reporting very difficult."
Kine says journalists routinely self-censor material, and that the Indonesian government and security forces in Papua often place informers into media organizations to monitor and influence coverage. At other times, an intelligence operative will be required to follow a journalist into the region, restricting what they can report on and how sources offer testimony.
The result is that little or no coverage exists about the realities inside Papua, where civilians--especially in remote areas--are victims of civil, social and economic rights violations. Many in the region have no access to health or education services, or risk having their land stolen by the police or military. Because of their isolation, they have no one to whom they can report the violations.
But as much as authorities within Papua have tried to censor incriminating material, much of the news that comes out of the region remains negative, says Lina Nursanty, the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers' (WAN-IFRA) Indonesian Media Freedom Committee chair and a West Java-based freelance editor.
"Whenever we hear anything about Papua, it's always about a tribal war or human rights abuses," says Nursanty. "The news we get from there is always violent."
As hosts of next year's UNESCO World Press Freedom Day celebrations, Indonesia has the challenging task of convincing the world that it deserves to act as a platform for media freedom. Nursanty says that while attending last year's Press Freedom Day event in Helsinki, she joined a meeting with the Indonesian ambassador, where the discussion of Papua was at the top of the agenda. 
"The Indonesian press council representative said that our biggest homework for next year is press freedom in Papua," says Nursanty.
The Indonesian press council is currently creating a press freedom index for each region. And while the country's overall index is improving, many Papuan journalists say it's not enough. Mambour says that at next year's World Press Freedom Day, he is willing to expose the truth about Papua, even if it puts his personal safety at risk.
"We need to take the opportunity to tell the world about what's happening in Papua," says Mambour. "We need to say how we are not granted freedom of the press and about the discrimination there."
"I'm already past paranoia. I'll talk about what's going on. I'm not worried. Sometimes you have to take the risk."

The WAN-IFRA Indonesia Media Freedom Committee is organizing a joint reporting trip to Papua at the beginning of 2017. The initiative will see 10 Indonesian media organizations provide a week of joint coverage from the region, working with local Papuan journalists to shift the national news agenda and provide more detailed coverage of issues of importance to Papuans.

A google translate . Be-aware google translate can be a bit erratic.
Original Bahasa link at

Selasa, 13 Desember 2016 — 18:32
2) This strategy Foreign Ministry on the issue of Papua, Melanesia and the Pacific

News Portal Papua No. 1 | Jubi,

Jayapura, Jubi - Head of the Agency for the Assessment and Policy Development (IRB) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Foreign Ministry) Indonesia, Siswo Pramono said Indonesia needs to be more patient and not reactive in dealing with the issue of Papua.

Jakarta Post interviewed Siswo Pramono and published it in snippets answering questions about foreign policy and strategy for Indonesia in three years. In addition to the scope of the policy in Southeast Asia (ASEAN), Siswo also disclose the policy and strategy of Indonesia in the Pacific, including in the area of ​​Melanesia.

Siswo in an article interview titled Government should be 'more patient, less reactive on the Papua issue, said central plan marine developed by President Jokowi, including the Pacific, the Southwest Pacific in close context with the Melanesian Spearhead Groups (MSG) and the Papua issue.

Indonesia, he said, the position of member of the G20 into a donor country that had to divide its resources in the Pacific

He acknowledged, Foreign Ministry did attempt to avoid the internationalization of the issue of Papua.

"Although we tried to avoid the internationalization of the issue of Papua, a lot of people out there making a fuss about it (matter Papua)," he said.

The Indonesian government, said Siswo, need more patience is not too reactive in dealing with the issue of Papua.

"We put great care in MSG as part of the South Pacific. [...] Since this is a sensitive issue in eastern Indonesia and President Jokowi recently inaugurated several projects in Papua. MSG must feel they have benefited from Indonesia, which became one of its members. [...] "Siswo said in an interview with The Jakarta Post.

Siswo view MSG was directing him to ASEAN.

He also reiterated the view expressed Indonesia is part of Melanesia, as evidenced by the 11 million inhabitants of Melanesia in Eastern Indonesia. If 11 million people in Indonesia have joined the MSG, according to him, their political pie gets bigger and the eastern region of Indonesia will be the bridge to the Asian market Melanesia. Currently, he added, has no direct flights to Bali from Papua New Guinea.

"Papua is a major and important domestic issues in Indonesia. Papua also become a potential gateway to our friends in the Pacific to access the Asian market, "said Siswo. (*)


3) Government should be ‘more patient, less reactive’ on Papua issue
Tue, December 13 2016 | 09:25 am

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo delegates the formulation of Indonesia’s position on global matters without much guidance or clarity, observers say. The Jakarta Post’s Tama Salim interviewed Siswo Pramono, head of the Foreign Ministry’s Policy Analysis and Development Agency (BPPK), to review his foreign policy and strategies for the next three years. Here are excerpts from the interview:
Question: What is the current priority of Indonesian foreign policy?

 The closest region is our biggest priority, not just for economic reasons but also for our survival, which is highly dependent on ASEAN.

The challenges in ASEAN are enormous: first, a fundamental change in […] the “ASEAN way,” which has taken on new [...] meanings with the generational changes.

We have the generation of [Foreign Minister] Retno [LP Marsudi] — the third generation [of the ministry’s diplomats] — but then we have a generation of people from ministries and other counterparts who have not changed all that much.

 ASEAN […] requires constant care in preserving its unity; the challenge is in the political communication.

Secondly, while our foreign policy is formulated for the long term, we feel its direct impact when it is tangible. So […] when [ASEAN] members converge into a single market we may not be able to discern its effects on prosperity within a day, but we can sense it through the penetration of goods [into the market].

[…] In celebrating ASEAN’s 50th anniversary next year, we’ve gone through many changes, including the ASEAN Charter. There is so much transparency now […] Concrete projects include the ASEAN Economic Community […] but […] we need to better inform our people about the [risks]. […]

What did you mean with generational differences among those shaping foreign policy?

 […] A lot of the [1945 generation] were Dutch-educated; […] even for homegrown talents, most universities were developed by the Dutch. So when we speak about the foreign policy of that time, we speak of 

[...] Then the development of schools of thought from one generation to another is quite dynamic, owing [partly] to the extraordinary democracy in 1955 […]

We had products of Dutch thinking and then American. Then we shifted more toward the Pacific […]; around 20,000 Indonesians are studying in Australia. So we have had a Western perspective within the Asian experience. But nowadays we have more people who studied in Japan, South Korea and China […]

So how do we interpret the ASEAN Way through the eyes of our current generation? And how do others, such as Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam or the Philippines, see the ASEAN Way through their perspective? […]

[We require] brainstorming among leaders […] including how to face the common challenge of the South China Sea debacle. […] If these parties [in ASEAN are] economically close but are culturally different, it is something we only find out from intense dialogue.

What other regions will the Foreign Ministry prioritize apart from ASEAN?

We see [the importance of] the Indian Ocean through our leadership [in the Indian Ocean Rim Association, IORA]. […] Indonesia is bound by […] the Pacific Ocean, the South China Sea and the East Asia region to the north, and to our west is the Indian Ocean […] 

When President Joko “Jokowi’ Widodo speaks about the Indo-Pacific region and the “maritime axis,” he refers to the Indian Ocean to the Pacific, including the South China Sea.

So in line with the maritime axis plan […], the foundation of our foreign policy in the last two years, we have to connect the two oceans.

Indonesia is more focused on communicating inwardly through infrastructure development — building ports, toll roads etc. But now we are being challenged by China on how to connect the maritime axis plan with their One Belt, One Road initiative. […]

Indonesia [must also] consider the Indian Ocean […]

Jokowi’s maritime axis plan [also comprises] the Pacific — the southwest Pacific in the context of the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) and the Papua issue. Although we try to avoid internationalization of the Papua issue, many people out there make a fuss about it.

[As] a G20 member state, [...] we are now a donor country, meaning we have to funnel our resources in the Pacific.

Compared to ASEAN, with a combined GDP of US$2.3 trillion […] and IORA with around $9 trillion; the MSG [has] a total GDP of $23 billion. So with a GDP of roughly $850 billion, we can play a bigger role [in the Pacific]. 

[…] the government should be more patient and be less reactive. […] We place great care in the MSG as it is a part of the South Pacific. […] Because it is a sensitive issue in eastern Indonesia and President Jokowi has just inaugurated several projects in Papua, the MSG should feel it is benefiting from Indonesia becoming one of its members. […]

 The MSG orients itself toward ASEAN. […] Indonesia is part-Melanesian, as evidenced by our 11 million Melanesian population [in eastern Indonesia]. If they join the MSG, their slice of the political pie will get bigger and the eastern region […] will become their bridge to the Asian market. There are already direct flights from PNG to Bali […]

Papua is first and foremost Indonesia’s domestic problem […] Papua can also become a potential gateway for our friends in the Pacific to access the Asian market. […]

So these past two years Pak Jokowi has been promoting the maritime axis plan, but now we must devise concrete strategies and translate them into foreign policy. [Our challenge is] not only to realize the connectivity […] but also to ensure it becomes the gateway to profits in the Indian Ocean, in East Asia and the South China Sea area, as well as in the Pacific. [..]

Do we need better coordination among government bodies?

[…] it is up to each ministry to respond to the will of the President, who represents the will of the people. And how his ministers respond will heavily depend on how everything is coordinated.

For instance, in negotiations on the South China Sea, [apart from] the Foreign Ministry there is the Office of the Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister and the Navy — even the Villages, Disadvantaged Regions and Transmigration Ministry is involved […] because development on the Natuna islands will be decisive in maintaining sovereignty in the area.

[But] […] it remains the domain of the foreign minister to convey the substance to ASEAN or China. Interdepartmental coordination is crucial because Indonesia [has] many gaps — whether between east and west or among competing interests. But it is the purpose of good governance to ensure that everything [put out as a policy] is discussed together.

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