Wednesday, July 10, 2019

1) Papuan Figures Said to Be Worthy to Fill Jokowi's New Cabinet

2) Human Rights Update West Papua - 2nd Quarter 2019

3) Claims of United Military Factions Outline Disunity in West Papuan Push for Independence

1) Papuan Figures Said to Be Worthy to Fill Jokowi's New Cabinet

 Translator: Ricky Mohammad Nugraha   Editor: Laila Afifa 10 July 2019 21:17 WIB
TEMPO.CO, Biak - LSM Fiaduru Executive Secretary Oktovianus Mangge says there are several Papuan figures with qualifications needed to enter President Jokowi’s upcoming cabinet.
“[They are worthy] because they are working as regents, mayors, and governors. Apart from the city or regional-level politicians,” said Oktovianus Mangge.
The non-government organization director mentioned the names of people who he thinks are qualified, such as; Uncen Jayapura Rector Dr. Ir. Ir. Apolo Safanpo M.T, young bureaucrat Velix Wainggai, Jayapura Regent Matias Awaitouw, Papua Governor Lukas Enembe, and presidential special staff Lenius Kogoya.
He also mentioned Minister Prof. Yohana Yembise and former Jayawijaya Regent Jhon Wempi Wetipo as possible candidates.
Even though he acknowledges the president’s prerogative right, he expressed hope for a Papuan, or more, making it into the upcoming State Cabinet.


2) Human Rights Update West Papua - 2nd Quarter 2019

Since December 2018, more than 100 civilians – the majority of them indigenous Papuans – have allegedly died as a consequence of the ongoing armed conflict in the Nduga regency. The conflict has reportedly led to the displacement of thousands of indigenous Papuans. The military operation in Nduga is ongoing, and human rights defenders, journalists and international observers are still restricted from entering the regency. The ICP is concerned about the significant increase of extra-judicial killings in the past nine months. While the high number of killings during the 4th quarter of 2018 and the 1st quarter of 2019 is mainly related to the armed conflict in Nduga, the additional six cases of killings and one alleged suicide while in detention during the 2nd quarter are the outcome of unprofessional behaviour of security force members. Five of those cases of killings were the consequence of the use of firearms during crowd control operations in the regencies Asmath and Deiyai. The high number of 29 cases of torture and ill-treatment is related to police violence against protesters during political demonstrations or police negligence to protect peaceful Pro-Papuan protesters from violent acts by members of nationalist mass organisations (ORMAS) in the Javanese city of Malang.

Download full report as PDF file here
The pattern of cases during the reporting period demonstrates persistent shortcomings of the judicial system and law enforcement institutions in West Papua. Three ‘political trials’ during the reporting period indicate that judges appear to lack impartiality, hence verdicts strongly reinforce government policies rather than showing objective judgements based on legal grounds. An example is the five years imprisonment sentence for a Polish citizen who was found guilty of treason for the alleged attempt to sell weapons to the West Papua National Liberation Army (TPN PB). It is the first time that treason charges have been pressed against a foreigner. While the evidence presented at court was considerably ‘weak’, the sentence was higher than those of previous cases with similar charges throughout the past years. The verdict underpins the government’s restrictive policy regarding the presence of foreigners in West Papua. Besides this, there were cases where the law enforcement officers’ negligence affected the health condition of arrestees and detainees in West Papuan detention facilities, resulting in the preventable deterioration of their health condition and even death.
Download full report as PDF file here


3) Claims of United Military Factions Outline Disunity in West Papuan Push for Independence

10 JULY 2019 Jarryd de Haan, Research Analyst, Indian Ocean Research Programme

The United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) released a statement on 1 July announcing that the three main West Papuan military factions have unified, forming what it called the West Papua Army. The groups comprising the new “army” include the West Papua Revolutionary Army (Tentara Revolusi West Papua), West Papuan National Army (Tentara Nasional Papua Barat) and the West Papua National Liberation Army (Tentara Pembebasan Nasional Papua Barat). According to the statement, the decision to unify the groups took place on 1 May, five years after three major political factions in the region unified under the ULMWP.
In response to the development, the Indonesian Military (TNI) was quick to play downany concerns, with spokesman Col. Muhammad Aidi saying that the issue was ‘old news’ and that ‘They declare this again and again every year but always [fail to] face the military’. Bobby Anderson, Papua researcher and fellow at Chiang Mai University’s School of Public Policy, also expressed similar doubts. Speaking to The Guardian, Anderson cautioned that the declaration ‘might just be the ULMWP trying to grab some of the momentum from the Nduga actions’, adding that ‘We won’t know if it’s real until we see co-ordinated armed actions both in Nduga and beyond, that will demonstrate that the ULMWP declaration is a reality.’ Confirming those doubts, a spokesperson from the West Papua National Liberation Army, one of the three groups named in the ULMWP statement, rejected it [in Bahasa Indonesia] calling it fraudulent, and claiming that the signatures on the document were falsified.
It seems unlikely that there will be any significant development from the statement and it is not clear how the unification of the armed groups would contribute to the goals of ULMWP. Benny Wenda, the Chairman of ULMWP, outlined the goals of the organisation in a recent statement: ‘I want the West Papua issue to be solved peacefully, through international mechanisms. We want the UN to review what happened in 1969. We want a peaceful referendum on independence in accordance with our fundamental right to self-determination.’ Uniting the military factions seems to run contrary to those goals, however, and may even be a prelude to a more violent route to independence. Comments made by ULMWP spokesman Jacob Rumbiak to ABC News, also appeared to show a willingness to go down such a route: ‘[This union] will show to Indonesia, and also the world, that we as West Papua are ready today to get independence’ and that ‘We already have a very clear agenda to become the best freedom fighters.’ That said, perhaps by unifying the military factions in West Papua, the ULMWP may be better equipped to rein in armed groups and prevent controversial incidents such as that in December 2018, in which approximately 17 non-Papuans, believed to be construction workers, were killed.
There are several obstacles to uniting the military factions in the West Papuan region, not the least of which overcoming the divisions among them. Speaking to Radio New Zealand, spokesman for the West Papua National Committee, Victor Yeimo, admitted that a united armed force is needed, but that it should be achieved under the rubric of the existing West Papua Liberation Army, citing concerns in the constitution of the Free Papua Movement. Given the opposing views as to how a united military should be formed, the latest statement from the ULMWP may have deepened divisions between the pro-independence groups. Harsh criticism of the statement from groups that were purportedly involved in it also underlines the animosity between the various groups vying for independence in the region, which will significantly hamper their efforts.

Any opinions or views expressed in this paper are those of the individual author, unless stated to be those of Future Directions International.
Published by Future Directions International Pty Ltd.

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