Wednesday, September 27, 2017

1) West Papua: Right to Self-Determination Needs UN support

2) 1.8 million West Papuans petition UN for independence vote
3) Feisty Pacific people standing up for West Papua

4) Two earthquakes jolt West Papua

5) Gasoline price in Papua remains normal, Pertamina claims
6) Gasoline in Wamena soars to Rp 50k per liter


Sep 27, 2017
1) West Papua: Right to Self-Determination Needs UN support

                                                            Photo Courtesy of Axel Drainville @Flickr

The Prime Ministers of the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu have used their speeches at the UN General Assembly to address Indonesia’s systematic use of human rights violations in Papua and West Papua. The Melanesian leaders called upon the Human Rights Council to immediately take action and accused its members of having ignored the problem for half a century. Recently reported cases include the imprisonment of 37 Papuans for peaceful support of independence movements. As the media and civil society organisations have only restricted access to the region resulting in limited or no coverage of West Papua’s situation, the Prime Ministers not only pointed out state-sponsored human rights abuses, but also the necessity of international support for West Papuan self-determination.

The article below was published by ASEAN Economist:
The UN has been accused by Melanesian leaders of ignoring human rights abuses in the unstable Indonesian province of Papua and demanded global support for the campaign for independence. 
At the UN General Assembly, the prime ministers of the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu called on the UN’s Human Rights Council to open a probe into human-rights abuses in the region.
The Jakarta authorities are accused of extrajudicial killings, torture, arbitrary detention, excessive use of force and mistreatment of peaceful protesters.
At least 37 Papuans are in jail for peaceful acts of free expression or for supporting the independence movement.
Media and NGO access to the region is heavily restricted.
The Solomon Islands premier, Manasseh Sogavare, said the UN’s lack of attention grossly contradicted Article 73 of its charter on human rights.
He said the United Nation’s sustainable development objective of “no one left behind” would be “synonymous to empty promises unless we in the United Nations take active steps to address the plight of the people of West Papua”.
“Failing this, we as a family of nations will become complicit in perpetuating the sufferings and becoming blind to the injustices, missing yet another golden opportunity to remain true to the saying of ‘leaving no one behind’,” Sogavare said.
Jakarta has been repeatedly accused of human-rights violations and violent suppression in the ethnically distinct provinces of West Papua and Papua, which constitutes around a quarter of Indonesia’s landmass with about 6 per cent of its population.
Papua’s indigenous population is Melanesian, more closely linked to Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Fiji and New Caledonia.
Formerly the Netherlands New Guinea, Papua was controlled by the Dutch after Indonesia’s independence in 1945 but the region was seized by Indonesia in 1963. Jakarta cemented its grip with a referendum in 1969 which the Suharto dictatorship was accused of rigging.
Known as Irian Jaya until 2000, the Indonesian-controlled half of the giant island of New Guinea in 2003 was split into two provinces, Papua and West Papua.
Vanuatu’s Prime Minister, Charlot Salwai, told the gathering in New York that Papuans must be allowed self-determination and freedom from the “yoke of colonialism”.
“For half a century now the international community has been witnessing a gamut of torture, murder, exploitation, sexual violence and arbitrary detention inflicted on the nationals of West Papua, perpetrated by Indonesia, but the international community has turned a deaf ear to the appeals for help. We urge the Human Rights Council to investigate these cases,” Salwai said.
“We also call on our counterparts throughout the world to support the legal right of West Papua to self-determination and to jointly with Indonesia put an end to all kinds of violence and find common ground with the nationals to facilitate putting together a process which will enable them to freely express their choice.”


2) 1.8 million West Papuans petition UN for independence vote
7:23 pm on 27 September 2017
A petition with the signatures of 1.8 million West Papuans in Indonesia has been presented to the United Nations in New York demanding an internationally supervised vote on independence.
The exiled West Papuan independence leader Benny Wenda presented the document to the C24, the special committee on decolonisation on Tuesday.
Dr Jason MacLeod from the University of Sydney is a West Papua expert who has just returned from the Indonesian territory to verify the petition.
He said it was fair and accurate representation of the West Papuan people's will and the UN needed to pay due attention.
"They've got two choices before them. They can either re-list West Papua on the UN Committee for Decolonisation or they can put pressure on the Indonesian government to hold a referendum. One of those two things really need to happen."
The Free West Papua movement said the 1.8 million people who signed the petition account for more than 70 percent of the region's population.


3) Feisty Pacific people standing up for West Papua
26 September 2017
Dear Editor 
We are full of admiration for the feisty Pacific people’s movements standing up for West Papua. It was great to see the reports of the colourful demonstration in Samoa at the time of the Pacific Island Forum meeting.  
Now several Pacific Governments are taking up the cause at the UN, shaming our Government for its inaction. 
It was disappointing to see the comments of Indonesian Government representatives, especially the unfair comments of Franz Albert Joku who accused Pacific nations for not taking up the cause of West Papuan freedom back in the 1950s and 1960s. 
Did he forget that most Pacific ‘nations’ were still under colonial control themselves at that time and did not have a seat at the UN?  
Joku also overlooks the fact that Pacific politicians and Pacific people did try to make their voices heard when western nations were selling out the West Papuan people to Indonesia.    
In April 1961 Malietoa Tanumafili II was a member of the New Zealand delegation, which attended the inauguration ceremony for the New Guinea Council.  
 This was a significant moment in the Dutch plans to give the West Papuan people a greater say in their own governance. 
In August 1962  Nicolaas Jouwe and other members of the New Guinea Council submitted an appeal to the United Nations  and listed the Pacific leaders from Tonga, Nauru, Guam, New Hebrides/Vanuatu and Papua New Guinea who had endorsed it.  
The new Prime Minister of Western Samoa, Fiame Mata’afa Faumuina Mulinu’u II headed the list.  The appeal asked the United Nations to respect Papuan rights, in accordance with the UN Charter.   A few months later as the UN was approving the New York Agreement that facilitated the Indonesian take-over of West Papua, several members of the Fiji Legislative Council expressed their fears that their neighbours in West New Guinea (West Papua) were being threatened with domination by an ‘alien’ power. They asked if the British Crown had a similar fate in mind for them.  
Papua New Guinea was still under Australian rule, but local politicians also condemned Australia and the US for giving in to President Sukarno.    John Guise, (later to become PNG’s Governor-General) organised a petition to the United Nations. 
 A Port Moresby correspondent to the Sydney Morning Herald  wrote bitterly that the United Nations was a ‘deceptive society of cheats’, who traded off the Papuan people like cattle.  He said the dividing line between the two halves of New Guinea was only a line on map and recalled the time when Papuans ‘were not animals but fuzzy wuzzy angels, but that was long ago when the Americans and Australians were fighting Asians and needed our help...’   
West Papua should have achieved its independence decades ago. That this did not happen is not the fault of Pacific people, who have much to be proud of, both in their history and in their current support for West Papua. 
Yours sincerely, 
  Maire Leadbeater 
West Papua Action Auckland 
  *The historic information referred to in this letter was sourced from NZ Ministry of Foreign Affairs documents in the NZ National Archives.


4) Two earthquakes jolt West Papua

17 hours ago | 724 Views
Sorong, West Papua (ANTARA News) - Two consecutive earthquakes jolted the eastern Indonesian province of West Papua on Wednesday, but there was no immediate report of tsunami or material damage.

Meteorology and Geophysics Office spokesman Andri W Bidang remarked here on Wednesday that the first earthquake measuring 4.0 on the Richter scale jolted the province at 2.37 am Eastern Indonesia Standard Time (WIT).

Its epicenter was located at 2.92 degrees Southern Latitude and 134.32 degrees Eastern Longitude on the land, 29 km southwest of Wondama Bay District.

Later at 4.08 am WIT, the second earthquake measuring 5.0 on the Richter scale jolted Tambrauw District.

The epicenter of the second quake was in the sea at the coordinate of 1.16 degrees Northern Latitude and 132.7 degrees Eastern Longitude at a depth of 10 km.

"We call on the people in coastal areas to stay calm because the two earthquake did not have the potential to trigger a tsunami," Andri said.(*)




5) Gasoline price in Papua remains normal, Pertamina claims
Nethy Dharma Somba The Jakarta Post

Jayapura | Wed, September 27, 2017 | 03:38 pm
State-owned energy firm PT. Pertamina brushed off reports over soaring fuel prices in Wamena in Jayawijaya regency, Papua.
Fuel supply in Wamena, as well as in all other regencies in Papua, was normal and prices were stable, Pertamina’s Marketing Operation Region (MOR) VIII stated.
Previously, Wamena residents said a liter of subsidized premium gasoline was sold for up to Rp 50,000 (US$3.70) at non-Pertamina sellers.
But Pertamina MOR VIII retail market manager Zibali Hisbul said fuel in Papua was still sold at the normal price: Rp 6,450 per liter for Premium, Rp 5,150 per liter for diesel fuel and Rp 2,500 per liter for kerosene.
“Those who sell at higher prices are [non-Pertamina] sellers, and Pertamina doesn’t have the authority to regulate fuel sales at that level as it is the local administration who has the authority,” he told The Jakarta Post in Jayapura on Tuesday.
President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s one-price fuel policy has been implemented in Papua since Oct. 18, 2016.
Fuel stocks in SPBU (gas station) Kompak in Jayawijaya had never run out. Residents purchase fuel with coupons issued by the Industry and Trade Agency, he said.
Jayawijaya Police Chief Adj.Sr.Comr. Yan Piet Reba said the police had held a meeting with the relevant stakeholders to discuss soaring fuel prices at non-Pertamina sellers.
Yan suggested the price increase could have been linked to rumors that say a recent cargo plane accident in Wamena could result in a shortage of fuel supplies in the area. (afr/bbs)

6) Gasoline in Wamena soars to Rp 50k per liter
Nethy Dharma Somba The Jakarta Post
Jayapura | Mon, September 25, 2017 | 01:20 pm

Despite President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s one-price fuel policy in Papua implemented on Oct. 18, 2016, the price of subsidized Premium gasoline has continued to soar over the past three weeks in Wamena, Jayawijaya regency.
The retail price for Premium gas initially rose to Rp 13,000 (US$1) per liter from the normal price of Rp 6,450 per liter, but has recently increased again to Rp 50,000 per liter.
“The price could even rise to Rp 75,000 per liter at night,” Deny, a Wamena resident, told The Jakarta Post on Sunday.
In response, the Jayawijaya Police have deployed its “one-price fuel monitoring team” to look into the matter, as they said there were no issues in the fuel supply from state-owned energy firm PT. Pertamina.
“This is the highest retail price found since the one-price policy was launched. Usually, the retail price rises no higher than Rp 10,000 per liter,” Jayawijaya Police chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Yan Piet Reba told the Post, adding that the police would bring to account any individuals found to be hoarding fuel.
Aviation company PT Trigana Air Service has stated it would increase the daily volume of fuel it transports to Wamena.
“Normally, we transport 280 barrels of fuel, comprising kerosene, diesel fuel and gasoline. Because of reports of soaring fuel prices, we will increase the volume to 500 barrels,” Trigana marketing officer Ade told the Post(bbs)

Sorong, Jubi – Unemployment in Sorong City, West Papua Province, up to August 2017 has recorded reach 2,700 people. The amount is quite high and local governments are committed to make it lower by increasing training for job seekers.
Head of Department of Labor, Anton Sagrim, in Sorong, Friday (September 22), said since January it has issued 2,700 sheets of yellow cards for job seekers in Sorong City.
He said the yellow cards issued are 366 elementary school graduates, 143 from junior high school, senior high as many as 1026, 630 people from vocational school, 207 diploma and 429 people university graduated.

According to him, the opportunity to find employment in government agencies, state enterprises and local business entities are very limited, while opportunity to get a job in the private sector is huge.
He said that Kota Sorong is a service city. Most job opportunities in Sorong are at the micro small and medium enterprises that amounted to thousands.
“However, the interest of job seekers especially for native Papuan to work in the private sector is very minimal,” he said.
It is said, indigenous Papuan tend to become civil servants (PNS) so that unemployment in Sorong City continues to grow from year to year.
The government has sought to provide understanding to indigenous Papuan not to expect to be accepted as CPNS (civil servants applicant), but to seek employment opportunities in the private sector.
“But still, the desire of indigenous Papuan to work in private sector are low, most of them dream of becoming civil state apparatus,” he said. (*)
Source: Antara
Editor: Zely Ariane

Jayapura, Jubi – Head of Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX) Jayapura Representative, Aditya Kresna Yokwa, said that the intention of Papua Province and Mimika Regency Government to buy PT Freeport Indonesia (PTFI) shares could use lasting funds.
“I suggest that the local government use the existing endowment fund, which is already prepared to absorb Freeport shares,” he said, in Jayapura, Saturday (9/23/2017).
If the endowment is not sufficient, he proposed the Papua Provincial Government and Mimika Regency could issue bonds.

The local government can issue debt to the public that later money from the sale of bonds can buy shares in Freeport.
Aditya assessed that PTFI’s share purchase was not directly by the two local governments, but through Regional Owned Enterprises (BUMD).
If the local government wants to own part of Freeport’s shares, according to him, they have to go through those two processes (SOEs and BUMDs) as long as there is any remaining. This could be listing on BEI to be purchased by the public.
He also admitted that it cannot mention the exact figure about the value of PTFI shares. But he said that the number is quite large and reach trillions of rupiah.
“If we look from the evaluation, the price is quite high because of the latest info obtained from Freeport that it is assessing the stock valuation price per share, Freeport counts with reserves that have not been ‘explore’ or still stored in the womb of the earth,” said Aditya.
Regarding the request from both local governments for Jakarta to purchase PTFI shares and grant them to Papua government, he said that would be very difficult.
Therefore, he urged that from now on the local government immediately conduct fiscal calculations to be able to find the right solution to own PTFI shares. (*)
Source: Antara
Editor: Zely Ariane

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