Tuesday, December 19, 2017

1) President distributes 2,568 land certificates in West Papua

2) 74 villages in papua and west papua to have access to electricity

3) Marking Trikora declaration, protests calling for Papuan self-determination held in 14 cities

4) 66 arrested and 4 beaten at solidarity rallies held in 14 Indonesian cities to reject Indonesia’s occupation of West Papua


1) President distributes 2,568 land certificates in West Papua

Sorong (ANTARA News) - President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) here on Wednesday distributed 2,568 land certificates to communities from the districts of Sorong and South Sorong and the city of Sorong in West Papua Province.

"Please, those who have received the certificate raise it up for I would like to see and count it," the president remarked during a ceremony to distribute the certificates at the Aimas Convention Center Building, here.

President Jokowi highlighted the importance of ownership of land certificates to reduce land disputes that often occur in various regions.

"Every time I visit a region, there are always complaints of land disputes that reach my ear," the head of state informed the recipients of the certificates who were present at the ceremony.

According to the president, a total of 15 million land certificates had been distributed in West Papua this year, and the number is expected to reach 40 million next year.

On the occasion, Minister of Agrarian Affairs and Spatial Planning and Head of the National Land Agency Sofyan A. Djalil revealed that currently, only 14 percent of the land had been certified.

He said West Papua has 1,356,581 plots of land, of which only 190,638 have already been certified.

Editor: Heru Purwanto

2) 74 villages in papua and west papua to have access to electricity

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - President Joko Widodo is scheduled to declare 74 villages in Papua and West Papua as villages with access to electricity on Wednesday.

State electricity company`s (PLN) business director for Maluku and Papua regions Ahmad Rofik said in a press release received here on Tuesday the 74 villages are part of 191 villages in Papua and West Papua to be supplied with electricity by PLN.

"This will be a special gift for people in remote villages in Papua and West Papua from PLN," he said.

He said it took Rp150 billion for PLN to open access to electricity to the 74 villages with 1,040 families, adding potential families still have yet to be supplied with electricity total 2,700.

PLN needs Rp150 million to open access to electricity to one family due to geographical challenges of the villages there, he said.

Rofik said difficult access, extreme weather as well as social problems have not discouraged PLN to open access to electricity to isolated villages in Papua and West Papua.

"There are a lot of challenges we face including field condition that makes mobilization of equipment difficult as well as social problems but seeing the villagers being satisfied gives us happiness and encouragement," he said.

In Nabire, two villages which are Bomopay and Paraito will be supplied with electricity this month, he said.

Bomopay is located 60 kilometers from the city of Nabire and populated with 63 families who are farmers.

Parauto on the other hand is located 66 kilometers from Nabire with 48 families who are also mostly farmers.

The head of corporate communication unit of PLN, I Made Suprateka, said rural electricity development is one of the government`s strategic programs to increase the ratio of electrification and rural electricity.

In the past two years PLN has increased electrification ratio in the eastern Papua province from 45.93 percent to 50.11 percent and ratio of rural electricity from 22.02 percent in 2015 to 29,53 percent in 2017.

In West Papua electrification ratio has risen from 82.7 percent to 91.76 percent while ratio of rural electricity from 33.23 percent in 2015 to 54.47 percent in 2017.

The number of villages in Papua and West Papua that have had no access to electricity in 3016 was recorded at 2,376,

A total of 1,941 of the villages will be supplied with electricity using solar energy saving lights program by the ministry of energy while the number of villages to be supplied with electricity by PLN until 2018 totals 435,

Reported by Kelik Dewanto
Editor: Heru Purwanto

3) Marking Trikora declaration, protests calling for Papuan self-determination held in 14 cities

Suara Papua - December 19, 2017

Bastian Tebai, Semarang -- On Tuesday December 19, the Papua Student Alliance (AMP) and the Indonesian People's Front for West Papua (FRI-WP) held simultaneous protest actions around the country against the Trikora declaration that was made on December 19, 1961, 56 years ago.

The actions, which were called by the AMP and FRI-WP, were held in 14 different cities.

High-school and university students, Papuan youth and Indonesian solidarity activists took to the streets to hold peaceful actions in Jakarta, Bali, Bogor and Bandung in West Java, Salatiga, Solo, Yogyakarta and Semarang in Central Java, Malang in East Java, Manado and Tondano in Sulawesi and Ternate in North Maluku. The Semarang action was a combined cross-Java action.

The AMP and FRI-WP actions in the Sula and Morotai in North Maluku, Solo and Yogyakarta in Central Java and Ambon meanwhile only involved handing out leaflets explaining why West Papuans oppose the Trikora declaration and why the Papuan nation is demanding the right to self-determination as a nation.

An AMP and FRI-WP action in the East Java city of Malang meanwhile was blocked by police. One of the protesters, Elia Agapa, explained that the action was blocked by a reactionary mass organisation (Ormas). Police, who witnessed the incident just watched and allowed it to happen, surrounded the demonstrators after it turned chaotic. A clash broke out between the AMP and FRI-WP demonstrators and a joint force of police and Ormas members.

"We had 66 people at the action, which was surrounded and prevented from proceeding peacefully. A clash broke out and six demonstrators were injured. One of the six was a Papuan woman", Agapa told suarapapua.com.

In other cities meanwhile, there were no clashes or arrests although according to suarapapua.com sources police acted arrogantly and restricted democratic space through various means. The AMP and the FRI-WP however were still able to hold peaceful actions.

The joint Central Java four city action in Semarang involving protesters from Semarang, Salatiga, Solo and Yogyakarta began with a march from the Diponegoro University (Undip) in Semarang to the Central Java governor's office. Under the falling rain, the protesters then marched around the Simpang Lima Park. Despite being soaked by the rain, the protesters remained in high spirits singing "Papua is not Red-and-White but the Morning Star" [referring to the Indonesian national flag] and shouting "Free Papua", which reverberated throughout the march.

In speeches, action coordinator Janua Adii and AMP Semarang member Ney Sobolim asserted that the claim by President Suharto that Papua was a puppet state created by the Dutch was made unilaterally. The fact is that the December 1, 1961 declaration [of independence] expressed a lofty and genuine wish by the Papuan nation to be free and sovereign in their own land without interference by other nations.

In Yogyakarta, AMP chairperson Abbi Douw asserted that independence was a political right of the Papuan people as a nation.

"Papuan independence is guaranteed under international law. The universal declaration of human rights, international conventions on civil and political rights and on economic, social and cultural rights, in the first article it states that every person has the right to hold a political position and every nation which feels itself to be of one destiny, the indigenous people, have the right to jointly declare that we are one nation and wish to determine our own future, as was done by the Papuan nation", he asserted.

In another action meanwhile, Frans Tomoki, said that the future of the Papuan nation under the Indonesian occupation of the land of Papua is a future of death. And the road on the struggle for Papuan independence is the only path that leads towards a safe life for the Papuan nation.

FRI-WP solidarity activist Riko and colleague Penthol both said in speeches that Papuan independence is fitting because it is indeed true that today the Papuan nation is colonised by Indonesia.

"Indonesia itself is also still colonised by a rogue military and capitalists who today are the accomplices of global capitalists. Their interests are to control and take all the natural wealth in Indonesia and Papua. And today, the fact is, that the ordinary Indonesian people, as well as Papuans, are still poor, powerless, and suffering amidst all this wealth", asserted Penthol.

A solidarity action by the FRI-WP and Ternate meanwhile, was prevented from going ahead by local police. The explanation for the prohibition was outlined in a letter rejecting a notification of the demonstration.

In addition to not being allowed to protest in the name of the FRI-WP in solidarity with the Papuan nation, Ternate municipal police prohibited the protesters from holding the action under a theme which included the phrase "militarism". Moreover it was expressly stated that the FRI-WP must no longer raise the issue of Indonesia colonising the Papuan nation, use the word colonisation or take up the issue of self-determination for the Papuan nation as a democratic solution.

The Ternate municipal police also demanded than when submitting a notification for the action the FRI-WP must bring an ID card which is included in the written notification and indicates the identity of the action organiser. These prohibitions meant that the FRI-WP were only able to hold the action on the campus grounds.

Reading out a statement at the end of the action, Semarang city AMP committee chairperson Jakson Gwijangge asserted that they had three main demands. First, urging the state to immediately give Papuans the right to self-determination as a democratic solution for the people of West Papua.

Second, demanding that the state close down all companies, both national and multi-national, operating in the land of Papua. Third, urging the state to immediately withdraw all Indonesian military and police, both organic and non-organic, from the land of Papua.


Operation Trikora was declared by Indonesian founding President Sukarno in the Central Java city of Yogyakarta on December 19, 1961. It was an Indonesian military operation aimed at seizing and annexing the Dutch overseas territory of Netherlands New Guinea in 1961-62 rather than one intended to suppress a nascent independence movement.

Although it is widely held that West Papua declared independence from Indonesia on December 1, 1961, this actually marks the date when the Morning Star (Bintang Kejora) flag was first raised at a Dutch sanctioned ceremony in Jayapura, then called Hollandia. The first unilateral declaration of independence was in fact made by the Free Papua Organisation (OPM) on July 1, 1971 at the Victoria Headquarters in Waris Village, Jayapura.

[Translated by James Balowski for the Indoleft News Service. The original title of the article was "Tolak Trikora: AMP dan FRI WP Aksi di 14 Kota, 66 Orang Ditangkap".]

Source: https://suarapapua.com/2017/12/19/tolak-trikora-amp-dan-fri-wp-aksi-di-14-kota-66-orang-ditangkap/


4) 66 arrested and 4 beaten at solidarity rallies held in 14 Indonesian cities to reject Indonesia’s occupation of West Papua

DECEMBER 19, 2017
Yesterday on Tuesday 19th December, an unprecedented wave of solidarity from people across Indonesia took place for West Papua’s freedom as the West Papuan Student’s Alliance (AMP), together with the Indonesian People’s Front for West Papua (FRI-West Papua), held rallies in 14 Indonesian cities:
Jakarta, Denpasar, Manado, Solo, Ambon, Ternate, Yogyakarta, Sula, Moratai, Malang, Bandung, Bogor, Salatiga and Semarang. 

The growing support from Indonesian people in solidarity with West Papua is reaching new heights and shows similarity to Indonesian solidarity with the people of Timor-Leste (East Timor) in the late 1990s.
While all the rallies held were entirely peaceful, the Indonesian police and police militia tried their best to break the peace and break up the demonstrator’s freedom of expression. In Malang, 66 people were arrested and some of those arrested were brutalised.
Elia Agapa from the West Papuan Students Alliance told Suara Papua today, “Our mass action saw 66 of us surrounded and blocked for demonstrating peacefully. There was a clash and 4 of those from our mass action were wounded. One of those 4 people is a West Papuan woman.”

Operation Trikora

In 1961, the Dutch government (West Papua’s former colonial ruler) was well on the way to granting West Papua independence and on 1st December the West Papuan national flag was raised wit the promise of full independence in the coming years. In response, Indonesia’s president Soekarno announced “Operation Trikora”, a military plan to take West Papua by force. In the next few months, with backing from the Soviet Union, the Indonesian military launched ruthless military attacks on West Papua, from naval shelling to artillery bombing. Hundreds of Indonesian soldiers were airdropped into the country and the West Papuan defence force managed to successfully repel Indonesian attacks.

It was not until 15th August 1962 that West Papua was left unable to defend itself. Due to growing Cold War fears of war with a communist friendly Indonesia, the USA intervened and effectively forced the Dutch to hand over West Papua to Indonesia without the consultation of a single West Papuan person. The West Papuan defence force was disbanded and by 1963, the Indonesian military had taken full control of West Papua; their illegal occupation cemented through the fraudulent “Act of NO Choice” which this year over 1.8 MILLION West Papuan people signed a petition rebuking to call for a legitimate act of self-determination.

The people of West Papua have never accepted Indonesia’s “Operation Trikora”, nor the continued illegal occupation of the country. Growing solidarity from across Indonesia is evidence for the growing impact the West Papuan struggle is having and we are delighted at the support of Indonesian people, standing up to the litany of colonialism and genocide which continues to take place in occupied West Papua.
To find out more about the history of West Papua, please watch this excellent documentary made by the late Australian journalist Mark Worth.


INDOLEFT News service

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