Australia West Papua Association (Sydney)
Media release 17 December 2016 -AWPA condemns the arrest of 6 KNPB members in Nabire, West Papua
Six members of the KNPB were arrested in Nabire on Friday the 16 December.
Four members were arrested at the Police station when they went to inform the police of a planned peaceful demonstration to be held on the 19 December. Two other members were arrested when the security forces
raided the home of resident Zadrak Kudiai.
The planned rally on the 19 is to show support for West Papua becoming a full member of the MSG but also to remember that on the 19 December 1961, the then President Sukarno issued the “People’s Triple Command” (Trikora) calling for what he termed the liberation of Dutch New Guinea but in fact was the call to invade New Guinea.
This put pressure on the Dutch to agree talks with Jakarta eventually leading to the betrayal of the West Papuan people by the international community.
Joe Collins of AWPA said, “it is ironic that the new Indonesian Ambassador to New Zealand said (he “has made it his mission to inform the people of the South Pacific nation about the improved conditions in Papua and West Papua once he has been cleared to commence his duties in Wellington next year”), yet Collins said , thousands of people have being arrested at peaceful rallies since May and the six in Nabire are the latest to be jailed and this was simply because they were doing the right thing by informing the police of the planned rally”.
Hopefully any rallies that take place will be allowed to go ahead peacefully and there will not be a repeat of the brutal crackdowns at other peaceful rallies in the past.