Sunday, September 1, 2019

1) Two Papuan activists charged with treason for flying Morning Star flag

2) Gov't Warns 'Provocateurs' to Stop Sowing Unrest in Papua
3) Anarchic group in Papua linked to international organizations: Police

4) Internet access to be reopened after peace prevails in Papua: Wiranto
5) 'An earthquake': racism, rage and rising calls for freedom in Papua

6) Papua activist Surya Anta, 7 others arrested on charges of treason
7) Demanding referendum, KNPB calls for civil strike in Papua

1) Two Papuan activists charged with treason for flying Morning Star flag

CNN Indonesia – August 31, 2019

Papuan protesters fly Morning Star flag during rally at State Palace – August 28, 2019 (CNN)

Jakarta – On Friday August 30 the Metro Jaya regional police arrested two people on charges of treason (makar) for allegedly flying the Morning Star flag in front of the State Place during a rally on
 Wednesday August 28.

The two arrested activists are Anes Tabuni and Charles Kossay. During the demonstration, Tabuni is accused of acting as the action coordinator, making the invitations, mobilising the protesters, preparing the flags and giving a speech from a command vehicle.
Kossay meanwhile is accused of acting as the action coordinator during a rally in East Jakarta and like Tabuni, of giving a speech from a command vehicle.
Metro Jaya public relations division head Senior Commissioner Argo Yuwono said that the two stand accused of committing crimes against the state and attempted treason. Tabuni and Kossay have been charged under Article 106 in conjunction with Article 87 and or Article 110 of the Criminal Code (KUHP).
“It is strongly suspected that they committed crimes against state security and or conspiring to commit crimes against state security and makar”, said Yuwono when sought for confirmation on Saturday August 31.
Despite this, Yuwono did not provide further details on the arrests.

During the arrests, police also secured evidence including two mobile phones, a banner, a T-shirt and a scarf with pictures of the Morning Star and a megaphone.
The arrest of Tabuni and Kossay has triggered a reaction by scores of Papuan and West Papuan activists who went to the Metro Jaya regional police headquarters on Saturday afternoon.
They plan to surrender themselves to police as a form of solidarity with their two colleagues because they took part in the action jointly.
“Overnight we communicated with all of the groups from Papua and West Papua calling on them to gather [at the Metro Jaya headquarters], we will go there and surrender ourselves, we also took
 part in the rally so please arrest us [too]”, said Papuan student public relations officer Ambosius.

Based on information from Ambosius, police arrested Tabuni and Kossay at around 7.30 pm when they were at the Lanijaya student dormitory in Depok.
Ambosius said that police had earlier interrogated 19 people before eventually taking Tabuni and Kossay to the Metro Jaya police headquarters. (gst/vws)
[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was “Pengibar Bintang Kejora di Depan Istana Dijerat Pasal Makar”.]

2) Gov't Warns 'Provocateurs' to Stop Sowing Unrest in Papua


Jakarta. The government wants those responsible for provoking unrest in Papua and West Papua to immediately stop their actions, Chief Security Minister Wiranto said on Friday evening.
In a limited cabinet meeting on Friday evening, President Joko "Jokowi' Widodo ordered law enforcement agencies to take firm action against provocateurs and anyone involved in damaging public facilities.
"I order you to protect and restore law and order to Papua and West Papua… We will not tolerate rioters and anarchists. I reiterate, the security services must act firmly against anyone involved in stoking any form of racial animosity," the president said.
Tensions have been boiling over in Indonesia's two easternmost provinces since Aug. 19, after video footage of an incident in Surabaya, East Java, in which a mob shouted racial slurs at Papuan students, went viral on social media.
Thousands of people have since participated in rallies in several cities to protest prejudice and racial hatred against Papuans. Most of the rallies have turned violent, which saw angry mobs damaging public facilities and government buildings.
A rally Deiyai district, West Papua, earlier this week resulted in the deaths of two civilians and a soldier.
The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology has been restricting internet access in the restive provinces to contain the spread of fake news and provocative content on social media.
The latest rally in Jayapura, the capital of Papua, on Thursday also turned violent when protesters set fire to vehicles, government offices and public facilities. An unknown group also severed the main fiber-optic cable operated by wireless telecommunications provider Telkomsel, resulting in a communications blackout in many parts of the city.
Warning to Provocateurs
However, Wiranto said the president had also called on the security forces to avoid a hard-handed approach in dealing with the unrest.
"Actually, these riots are stoked [by provocateurs]. There are provocateurs who are deliberately trying to cause unrest… We know they are trying to benefit from the situation… We warn them; we know who they are … stop it, because it will only create instability," the minister said.
"I don't want to mention [their names], but I ask them to stop, because [their actions] are really harming the national interest," the retired Army general said.
He said 10 rifles belonging to the military were stolen in the violent incident in Deiyai, but that the community had since been persuaded to return it.
Wiranto expressed hope that the people of Papua would no longer allow themselves to be provoked into damaging public facilities that had been built with their money.
"It is easy to damage them, but hard to build," he said.
President Jokowi expressed his belief that the people of Papua love peace and Indonesia. He also called on all government institutions to continue serving the people of Papua and West Papua.
The situation in Jayapura returned to normal by Saturday.


3) Anarchic group in Papua linked to international organizations: Police

7 hours ago

Jakarta (ANTARA) - National Police Chief General Tito Karnavian has acknowledged that the groups committed anarchy in Papua and West Papua have links to foreign organizations.

"Yes. We know that these groups have links to international networks," General Tito Karnavian said in Jakarta on Sunday.

Therefore, the National Police is currently coordinating with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the State Intelligence Agency to deal with the problem.

The police had identified provocateurs allegedly ignited the unrest in Papua.

"Those responsible for provoking unrest in Papua and West Papua have been identified and are being investigated. If they are proved (to be involved in the riots), they will be prosecuted," Karnavian remarked.

The police chief claimed that the situation in Papua has been under control.

Around 6,000 joint military and police personnel were deployed to secure the easternmost Indonesian provinces.

They were distributed at several areas including Jayapura, Nabire, Paniai, Deiyai, Manokwari, Sorong and Fakfak.

The Indonesian Police earlier deployed 300 Mobile Brigade Unit (Brimob) personnel to Deiyai, Paniai, and Jayapura following the unrest in Deiyai District that killed
two civilians and an Army soldier, Indonesian Police Chief Gen. Tito Karnavian stated.

Karnavian expressed concern over the incident on Wednesday (Aug 28) and expressed hope of it not recurring in the future.

"We deplored the incident in Deiyai in which an army soldier was killed. He was killed in the line of action while guarding military weapons in a car. He was fatally
struck by an arrow. His rifle was taken," he stated here on Thursday.

Five military and police personnel were injured in the incident.

The police accused a group from Paniai that had triggered the unrest. They were not in the same group with other demonstrators, who had earlier staged a peaceful
protest before the local district office.

"This group from Paniai hid behind the demonstrators and attacked security personnel," Karnavian added.

Related news: Internet access to be reopened after peace prevails in Papua: Wiranto
Related news: Restore security and order in Papua: President
Related news: Melanesia Solidarity rejects Papuan referendum
Related news: Riau Islands police elite unit's 252 members deployed to Papua
Reporter: Anita P / Azis Kurmala
Editor: Sri Haryati


4) Internet access to be reopened after peace prevails in Papua: Wiranto
13 hours ago

Jakarta (ANTARA) - The government will reopen the access to the Internet in Papua and West Papua after peace and conducive situation prevail in the easternmost provinces, Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Wiranto said.

"It will be reopened for sure. Why should we block the Internet and social media when we already have peace in Papua," Wiranto said on the sidelines of "Yospan Papua" dance and musical performance during Jakarta's Car Free Day on Sunday.

Similarly, he continued, the security personnel would be withdrawn from the provinces after the situation could have returned to normal.

"We will wait, until we can see peace and security (in the provinces). We'll wait. Please be patient and calm," Wiranto said.

Wiranto claimed that the situation in Papua and West Papua have been under control.

"Today I am happy. This morning, I have received reports that (the situation) in Papua and West Papua is conducive,"

Residents have returned to their daily activities. Shops have started to operate.

"Thank God, and thank our friends in Papua and West Papua who have realized that it is unnecessary for us to fight with each other, to create anarchy, to set fire to buildings and public facilities," he noted.

Related news: Jokowi to hold meeting with Papua's eminent figures: Moeldoko

Any dispute should be solved through peaceful negotiations without anarchic actions.

"President Joko Widodo has often called us to solve any problem calmly and peacefully without anger," he said.

"We have tried to tell all people that we are brothers, and to tell all Indonesians, and the world that we are brothers. That we are ready to solve any problem in a good manner," Wiranto remarked.

Since two weeks ago, Communication and Informatics Ministry have been applying a temporary Internet block in Papua and West Papua due to rampant distribution and transmission of hoaxes, false news, provocative and racist contents in the regions.

As of Tuesday (Aug 27), the Internet access in Biak and its vicinity areas have returned to normal despite slow data speed when sending pictures or video.

National Police Chief General Tito Karnavian asserted that the Internet access restriction in Papua aimed at curbing and lowering hoax information on social media platforms. Tito said some people intentionally despise peace and the conducive situation in the province.

Related news: Government must better protect Papuan women to avert separatism: Kabes
Reporter: Syaiful Hakim, Sri Haryati
Editor: Rahmad Nasution


5) 'An earthquake': racism, rage and rising calls for freedom in Papua

Sat 31 Aug 2019 10.00 AEST

At a pivotal moment in the region’s struggle for self-determination, there is seething anger as well as hope 

by Kate Lamb in Jayapura

At the base of the verdant mountains of Sentani, where dense, tropical jungle overlooks a sprawling teal lake, worshippers stream into church, men in suits and ties and sandals or batik shirts, women 
with colourful woven bags strung from their foreheads and slung over their backs.
Grey clouds hang low over the house of worship, a wood and tin shed with concrete floors and large open windows that let in the thick humid air.
Almost two weeks after a series of violent protests hit Indonesia’s easternmost territory, touching off the worst unrest in more than a decade, the pews in the majority Christian province are full and 
the parishioners are angry.

The ring of evangelical hymns gives way to the rousing words of Rev Benny Giay, one of Papua’s staunchest supporters of self-determination. His fury is palpable.
“They called us animals!” he rails from the pulpit as women in the pews before him click their tongues in disgust. “Now there are anti-racist protests all over. It is like an earthquake!”
Ignited by malicious racial slurs two weeks ago, the protests in West Papuahave spread and intensified, with thousands taking to the streets in a series of rolling and in some cases violent demonstrations.
On Thursday angry demonstrators torched parliament and police buildings in Jayapura. Police fired tear gas and six hundred extra paramilitary troops have been deployed
 to the city. At least six people have been killed as the volatile situation, unfolding in a region for decades roiled by separatist conflict, escalates daily.
The Guardian travelled to West Papua, obtaining rare access to the province’s leading pro-independence figures at a pivotal moment for the province. On the ground there 
was seething anger and resentment, but also hope that the rage on the streets will transform into real momentum for independence.
“The protests are a spontaneous action against racism,” says Victor Yeimo, from the West Papua National Committee, which advocates a non-violent struggle to achieve self-determination.
 “But what people want is freedom.”

Victor Yeimo, from the West Papua National Committee. Photograph: Kate Lamb/The Guardian

‘A new time has come’

They have since spread to almost 30 cities inside and outside West Papua. There, demonstrators have flown the banned Morning Star flag, a symbol of Papuan independence, 
and held signs reading: “Papua merdeka, itu yang monyet inginkan,” – “Free Papua, this is what the monkeys want.”
After a market and government building were torched, the government in Jakarta sent more than 1,000 security personnel into the already heavily militarised province, sparking fears 
the protests would be put down with force.
But they have continued, spreading to Jayapura and the remote highlands, where thousands of Papuans in traditional dress carrying sticks, bows and arrows rallied to express their indignation.
Amid the unrest, key figures in the independence movement have seized on the momentum.

Describing the situation as a “crisis of history”, Giay urged parishioners in church to educate their children so they could “become like Moses”, leading their people out of slavery.
“It’s like a new time has come and we have to reposition ourselves,” Giay told the Guardian after the sermon, as churchgoers walked back up the mountain, well-thumbed Bibles in hand.

‘We have never had a choice’

For indigenous Papuans, the demonstrations that began as a fight against racism have ignited decades of anger that date back to colonialism.
While Indonesia and its resource-rich spice islands were granted independence from the Netherlands in 1949, West Papua, then known as West Irian, remained under Dutch control until 
Indonesian troops parachuted in to “liberate” it in 1962. By August that year the territory was temporarily bought under Indonesian control.
In 1969, the controversial Act of Free Choice, a vote to enable the inhabitants of West Irian to determine their own future, was held. Many Papuans claim it was conducted under duress. 
Of a population of 800,000 people, some 1,022 Papuans, reportedly hand-picked by Jakarta and kept under military supervision, unanimously voted for integration.
Despite concerns over the process, the United Nations noted the results in Resolution No. 2504, without explicitly endorsing them.

In the minds of West Papua’s pro-independence leaders the sense of disenfranchisement that characterised the Act of Free Choice has lingered in the Papuan psyche, fuelling a sense 
of injustice and perpetuating an independence movement that refuses to go away.

‘Papuans want freedom’

Across the Papuan capital, Jayapura, storefronts are adorned with red and white, the colours of the Indonesian flag, decorations from Indonesian independence day celebrations on 17 August. 
But deep-seated nationalism is hard to find.
“Indonesian nationalism is only a symbol in Papua, a symbol that is forced upon us,” scoffs Victor Yeimo, “How can we say we are part of Indonesia when we have never had a choice?”
Filep Karma, a prominent independence figure who spent eleven years in jail for flying the banned Morning Star flag, sits on the balcony of his Jayapura home, wearing a camel safari suit, 
and an East Timorese flag on his cap. The independence symbols, he says, are “his motivations”.
“Sometimes in town the military threatens me and says ‘take off that pin’,” he says of his Morning Star flag badge, “I tell them, ‘shoot me first, then you can take it off,” he says with a laugh.
For years Karma says he has warned the Indonesian government about its racism problem, an issue that many Papuans know all to well.

As a student in Java, Karma recalls a female friend who was a good singer cracking a joke in front of their friends. If they ever married, she jibed, “all the monkeys [Papuans] would know how to sing”.
“It hit me in the heart,” says Karma, from the balcony of his Jayapura home. “In church we would say we were brothers, so how could anyone say that?”
In Indonesia the general view of Papuans, he says, is “people with black skin, curly hair, and hairy bodies” who are “stupid, stinky and criminal”. Encountering it on a daily basis, 
he added, “gets to you psychologically”.
Around Jayapura, banners have been strung up calling for people to reject all forms of racism, but other ethnic divisions are plainly visible. 
At the Jayapura Mall, almost all patrons and salespeople are noticeably non-Papuan. The indigenous Papuans can be found clustered outside in the heat, selling betel nut and woven bags 
on the pavement.
Papua is a land rich in natural resources, but the indigenous population complain they have not benefited enough from their natural wealth – across the country Papua has the highest rates 
of illiteracy and HIV.
President Joko Widodo, or “Jokowi”, has worked hard to develop Papua, regularly visiting and initiating new infrastructure projects. But there have been bitter disappointments too.
In 2014 Jokowi promised to solve egregious cases of human rights abuses, but critics say nothing has changed and for many Papuans, getting justice is more important than a new bridge or road.
“The government needs a humanitarian approach, not a military one if they want to win the hearts of Papuans,” remarked Marinus Yaung, a lecturer in international relations Cendrawasih University in Jayapura.
On the ground the issue of a referendum on self-determination is a sensitive one to for Papuans, who worry there could be repercussions for what they say.
At a traditional market one woman answered carefully. “Papuans are happy with Jokowi,” she said, “But it should be our right to choose.”
One local journalist who asked not to be named told the Guardian: “If you ask Papuans if they want freedom, they do.”
Even as the anger in Papua boils over, analysts say it is hard to see how much could change without significant international pressure and support – something that has been lacking for 
decades and shows little sign of materialising now.
To Jakarta’s elite, which vehemently maintains Papua is a legitimate and non-negotiable part of Indonesia, independence for West Papua remains a fanciful suggestion.On Thursday, chief security 
minister Wiranto said the government would not entertain any demand for an independence vote, according to
“Demands for referendum I think must not be mentioned. Why? Because the unity of the Republic of Indonesia is final,” Wiranto said.
Karma is used to Jakarta’s intransigence and is realistic about Papuan dreams of independence:“Papua belongs to them, but in our minds it is ours.”

6) Papua activist Surya Anta, 7 others arrested on charges of treason
CNN Indonesia – September 1, 2019

Jakarta – Indonesian People’s Front for West Papua (FRI-WP) spokesperson Surya Anta was arrested by police in Jakarta overnight.
After being taken to the Metro Jaya regional police headquarters (Mapolda), Anta was then transferred to the Mobile Brigade headquarters (Mako Brimob) in Kelapa Dua, Depok, and is undergoing further questioning.
Jakarta Legal Aid Foundation (LBH) advocacy head Nelson Nikodemus Simamora said that Anta and seven other Papuan activists were arrested on charges of treason (makar).
“Surya is currently completing a BAP [police investigation report] on charges of makar. Two others have already completed BAPs as witnesses and suspects”, Simamora told CNN Indonesia via a text message early on Sunday morning, September 1.
CNN Indonesia contacted Simamora when he was at the Brimob headquarters where he and several other advocacy activists are providing legal assistance to the other Papuan activists being detained there.
Simamora admitted that he does not have the latest information on the case because he and the other activists providing legal assistance were not allowed to take communication devices inside.

“We don’t yet have the latest information on the situation because communication has been cut [with the two representatives inside Mako Brimob]. The police prohibited us from taking communication devices inside”, said Simamora when contacted again a short time later.
Earlier in a video obtained by CNN Indonesia, police officers could be seen showing a document to Anta and giving a short explanation before he was taken away.
Anta was picked up at a food court in a shopping centre. Indonesian Legal Aid Institute (YLBHI) Director Asfinawati has confirmed the arrest and says that it took place on the evening of Saturday Augusts 31.
Meanwhile CNN Indonesia has been unable to contact Metro Jaya public relations division head Senior Commissioner Argo Yuwono to confirm the arrest.
As of posting this report Yuwono has likewise failed to respond to questions sent by instant messenger or SMS. There has also been no response to similar questions sent to Metro Jaya General Crimes Detectives Directorate Director (dirkrimum) Senior Commissioner Suyudi AS. (kid)

According to a CNN Indonesia article later in the day, Argo Yuwono has confirmed that eight people – including Anta – have been charged with treason in relation to the rally in front of the State Palace. “Yes, they include (Surya Anta)”, Yuwono was quoted as saying.
[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was “Aktivis Papua Surya Anta Disebut Dipindahkan ke Mako Brimob”.]


7) Demanding referendum, KNPB calls for civil strike in Papua
CNN Indonesia – August 31, 2019
Jakarta – West Papua National Committee (KNPB) spokesperson Victor Yeimo says that they are calling for a national strike throughout the territory claimed to be West Papua to demand a referendum or an act of self-determination through a popular vote.
“We have called on the Papuan people to hold a national civil strike in the territory of West Papua, to urge Jakarta to provide space for a referendum in West Papua”, said Yeimo in an interview with CNN Indonesia TV on Saturday August 31.

According to Yeimo, this is part of the KNPB’s struggle which will continue to demand a referendum because, for them, the situation in Papua is one of “Indonesian colonisation”.
“Under [a process of] decolonisation, it is the obligation of the colonising country to give the right to self-determination”, he said.
Although Yeimo admitted that the opportunities for dialogue with Jakarta are still open, talks are restricted because they do not allow for discussion on a referendum or international supervision.
“The demands of the Papuan people are that there must be negotiations and international supervision”, he said.
Unfortunately, he said, the Papuan figures who have so far been invited to speak do not represent those who have different aspirations. According to Yeimo, the Papuan figures that have been speaking with the government are “opportunist people who have become part of the Papuan conflict for their personnel interests with those in power”.
“Jokowi [President Joko Widodo] has visited Papua several times and held a dialogue, and met many times with these people, that’s fine. But he never talks to us, the actors and fighters who have aspirations which are different from these figures”, he said.
Meanwhile former National Intelligence Agency (BIN) chief Sutiyoso has accused the KNPB of being one of the parties which is strongly suspected of being behind the riots in Papua and West Papua.

First, according to Sutiyoso, internally this is based on the fact that the KNPB is an organisation which campaigns for independence for the West Papuan state.
“Within the KNPB soldiers are developed, [for] the TNPB [West Papua National Army]. Led by Goliath Tabuni”, said Sutiyoso in an interview on Democracy Screen aired by CNN Indonesia TV on the evening of Friday August 30.
Sutiyoso said that with a force of 1,300 people, the TNPB’s membership is distributed among 35 groups spread throughout Papua. He has recorded their armed force as having as many as 600 firearms, 200 of which are TNI (Indonesian military) standard weapons.
Second, based on external factors, Sutiyoso accuses the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) [of fermenting separatism].

Sutiyoso said that ULMWP spokesperson Benny Wenda – who is currently based in Britain – has been conducting “guerilla” diplomacy seeking support from a number of United Nation member states and pacific countries.
Sutiyoso noted that Indonesia does not have any legal basis for recognising a referendum. People’s Consultative Assembly Decree (TAP MPR) Number VIII/1998 has already revoked TAP MPR IV/1993 on Referendums. Then there is Law Number 6/1999 on Revoking Law Number 5/1985 on Referendums.
With the annulment of these laws, neither the constitution nor legislation under the Indonesian legal system acknowledges or recognises an institution or model for a referendum. (arh)
[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was “Tuntut Referendum, KNPB Serukan Mogok Sipil Nasional di Papua”.]

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