Thursday, October 3, 2019

1) Indonesia: Thousands evacuated after violent protests in Papua

2) One of Indonesia's most wanted people says she won't be silenced, despite daily death threats

3) Indonesia says over 11,500 have fled violence-hit Papuan town

4) Any talks with Jakarta must feature referendum - Papuan group
5 ) Agam district govt raises funds to help Wamena riot survivors 
6) Papua provincial government guarantees working paramedics' security 

7) Papua enhances puskesmas' role in patient handling following riots


Al Jazeera
1)  Indonesia: Thousands evacuated after violent protests in Papua 

At least 33 people were killed and dozens injured in Wamena town amid racially-charged violent protests last week.
by Raheela Mahomed  2 hours ago


Thousands of Indonesians have been evacuated from Papua province after racially-charged violent protests last week.
At least 33 people were killed and dozens injured in Wamena town.
Al Jazeera's Raheela Mahomed reports from Jakarta, Indonesia.
Photos/video in article
2) One of Indonesia's most wanted people says she won't be silenced, despite daily death threats
EXCLUSIVE: As violence in the Papuan provinces of Indonesia reaches its "darkest" point in 20 years, Indonesian human rights lawyer Veronica Koman says she will continue to speak out despite daily death threats.



3) Indonesia says over 11,500 have fled violence-hit Papuan town


JAKARTA (Reuters) - Indonesian authorities said on Thursday more than 11,500 people have been evacuated from the town of Wamena in the easternmost province of Papua since dozens died during clashes last month in the area. 
Located on the western half of the island of New Guinea and long racked by a simmering separatist insurgency, Papua encompasses Indonesia’s two easternmost provinces and has a distinct ethnic Melanesian population. 
There has been a spike in protests and unrest since late August after Papuan students in Surabaya, Indonesia’s second city on the island of Java, were taunted and attacked by a mob chanting racial epithets over accusations they had desecrated a national flag. 
In some of the worst bloodshed in decades in Papua, 33 people died and scores were hurt during clashes in Wamena on Sept. 23. 
Government offices and homes were burned down, and 250 cars and motorcycles destroyed, as indigenous Papuans and security forces clashed. 
The government and some Papuan independence activists say 25 of the 33 who died there were migrants from elsewhere in the country.
Erizal, 42, a former resident of Wamena who had left, said his child and wife died during the unrest and he now felt too traumatized to consider returning to the town. 
“I am in my village in Padang now, maybe I will not return back to Wamena,” he said by telephone from the Padang area on Sumatra island where he was originally from. He said his shop had also been burnt down in the unrest. 
Between Sept. 23 and Oct. 2 Indonesia’s air force had flown 7,467 people out of Wamena on Hercules planes, while 4,179 people had left on commercial flights, said Harry Hikmat, an official at Indonesia’s social ministry.
Ahmad Musthofa Kamal, a spokesman for the Papuan police, said the situation in Wamane was now stable and that shops and markets were open again. 
A former Dutch colony, Papua was formally incorporated into Indonesia in 1969, after a disputed vote of about 1,025 hand-picked tribal leaders. The result of the plebiscite was overseen and endorsed by the United Nations. 
Indonesian President Joko Widodo has opened the door to holding talks with separatists in Papua, a departure from the stance of previous governments and some of his cabinet ministers. 
Reporting by Agustinus Beo Da Costa; Writing by Ed Davies; Editing by Frances Kerry
4) Any talks with Jakarta must feature referendum - Papuan group

4:58 pm on 3 October 2019  

Johnny Blades, RNZ Pacific Journalist 
The West Papuan pro-independence movement is insisting that genuine talks with Indonesia's government must address self-determination.

President Joko Widodo and his chief of staff have both told Indonesian media in recent days that they were prepared to meet anyone to discuss problems in Papua.
The president, known as Jokowi, was responding to a question from the press about whether he would hold a dialogue with pro-independence Papuan leaders.
Jokowi has appealed for calm in West Papua which has been gripped by weeks of large protests, a security forces crackdown and violent unrest that have left dozens of people dead.
While Indonesia has deployed over six thousand extra military and police to Papua, tensions in the region, as well as pro-independence sentiment, remain high.
It has added to pressure on a government also struggling to contain public discontent in Jakarta over several new laws which critics say undermine democracy.
In the interests of forging a way forward in Papua, the president's office was urged by representatives of the Papua and West Papua regional legislatures to have talks with the leading pro-independence groups, the West Papua National Committee (KNPB) and the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP).
The KNPB's international spokesman, Victor Yeimo, said they had been seeking meaningful talks with Jakarta for years without getting a response. He was cautious over the prospect, expecting Jokowi's usual emphasis on economic development in Papua to continue to be the focus.
After the widespread protests kicked off in late August, Jokowi invited a number of community and religious leaders from Papua to his palace. The meeting was billed as a way to discuss accelerating prosperity in Papua and West Papua provinces.
Mr Yeimo noted a discrepancy between the president's words and the actions of his government in employing a security approach to the peaceful expression of Papuan independence aspirations.
According to the KNPB, while Jakarta sees Papua as strictly an internal issue, in reality it's an international issue. Mr Yeimo said West Papuans seek intervention for a legitimate self-determination process under international law which they were denied in the 1960s when Indonesian took control of the former Dutch New Guinea.
"For us, we will not stop to demand the right of self-determination in West Papua," Mr Yeimo said.
"So, if Jokowi wants to dialogue, the main point for the dialogue is a referendum for the self-determination in West Papua, under the United Nations' supervision, mediated by a neutral or third party."
Mr Yeimo's comments echo those of the ULMWP's UK-based chairman Benny Wenda, who said at the United Nations last week that a deepening humanitarian crisis in his homeland underlined the urgent need for UN intervention.
While Jakarta has repeatedly stated that the incorporation of Papua into the republic is final, demonstrations by Papuans are becoming harder to ignore, even when the government resorts to cutting the internet in Papua as a response.

Indonesian authorities have fingered the KNPB and the ULMWP as being provocateurs, alleging that the groups stirred the recent unrest in an attempt to disrupt the unitary republic by seeking independence.
Mr Yeimo denied this, saying the Papuan independence struggle belonged to neither group, but rather the people.
"The leaders, even KNPB and ULMWP, cannot determine the future of the people of West Papua. The only way is to give the people democratic space - hold a referendum so they can choose what they want for their future."
While Jokowi's response to the press question did not single out any particular group who he might meet for talks, mistrust between Jakarta and Papuan leaders remains the main stumbling block.
A senior government source told RNZ Pacific that the president's primary objective was to restore "full normalcy, stability and security" in Papua.


5 ) Agam district govt raises funds to help Wamena riot survivors 
 6 hours ago
Lubukbasung, W Sumatra (ANTARA) - The Agam District Administration has launched a fundraising program to assist the survivors of the recent deadly rioting in Wamena, the capital city of Jayawijaya District, Papua Province, since Wednesday (October 2).

"The donated money will soon be distributed to those in need," Head of the Social Security and Protection Affairs at the Agam District Administration, Arfi Yunanda, told journalists in Lubukbasung on Thursday.

The fundraising program would be conducted for several days through the district government's internal organisations, he said.

Head of Social Welfare Affairs at the Agam District Administration, Syatria, added that he has no information about Agam's residents in Wamena or the Agam people-based organisation in the capital city of the Jayawijaya District, Papua Province.

Related news: West Sumatrans raise funds for Wamena riot survivors
Related news: Papua Governor offers security assurance to native, non-native people

The fundraising program for helping the Wamena riot survivors had earlier been initiated by the West Sumatra provincial government.

According to West Sumatra Governor, Irwan Prayitno, the fundraising program recently held was able to collect Rp3.1 billion, which came from individuals, organizations, mosques, and regional administrations through a gathering called "Badoncek".

Badoncek is a tradition followed by the people of Minangkabau to make a donation for others as a token of togetherness.

Renowned singer, Elly Kasim; ex-minister, Andrinof Chaniago; and Solok City Mayor, Zul Elfian, were among those who donated at the fundraising program to help the West Sumatra migrants, who had survived the Wamena riot.

The donated funds were also channeled by organizations, mosques, and regional governments, such as "Gebu Minang", "Big Family of Solok District", "Fatahillah Mosque of Blok B Tanah Abang", Tanah Datar District, as well as the cities of Solok and Payokumbuah.

Deadly riots erupted in Wamena during a rally that native Papuan students staged on September 23.

A total of 33 people, including a doctor, were killed, while at least 77 others sustained injuries in the riot that also compelled several thousand residents, mostly non-native Papuans, to take shelter in the local military and police compounds.

The dead and wounded comprised non-native Papuans, who were assaulted by rioters brandishing machetes and arrows. Several of them had migrated to Papua from their hometowns in provinces, such as West Sumatra and South Sulawesi, to earn a living.

Related news: Banten governor vows evacuation of his people from Papua
Related news: Transportation ministry prepares ships to evacuate Wamena's refugees
Reporter: Altas Maulana, Rahmad Nasution
Editor: Sri Haryati

6) Papua provincial government guarantees working paramedics' security 
 7 hours ago
Jayapura, Papua (ANTARA) - The Papua provincial administration has pledged to guarantee the safety and security of working paramedics across the province after a senior medical doctor was killed following the riot and exodus of working paramedics in Wamena. The provincial government has coordinated with the commander of XVII Cenderawasih Regional Military Command and Papua police chief, Secretary of the Papua Provincial Administration Hery Dosinaen said in Jayapura Thursday.

"In this regard, the security scheme is an important matter for us. Therefore, we always coordinate with the regional military commander and Papua police chief to know how it has been implemented to avoid any unexpected feedback in public," he said.

Related news: Indonesian military confirms 17 deaths in Wamena's rioting

Besides guaranteeing the safety and security of doctors and paramedics, Dosinaen also expressed the provincial government's hope that all health centers in Jayawijaya District would soon resume their normal operations.

"In the aftermath of the Wamena rioting, only one health center has resumed its normal operations. We hope that other health centers in the district, including those at temporary shelters, will immediately begin operations," he said.

Related news: Paramedics working in Papua need security guarantee: IDI

The Indonesian Doctors Association (IDI) had earlier appealed to security agencies and other related stakeholders, as well as community members, to guarantee the safety and security of the working paramedics across Papua.

Their safety and security are of importance to enable them to work optimally, Chairman of IDI-Papua Chapter, Dr. Donald Aronggear, told Antara in Jayapura September 26.

Related news: Papua enhances puskesmas' role in patient handling following riots

Commenting on the death of the 53-year-old doctor, Soeko Marsetiyo, in Wamena's deadly rioting that broke out early this week, Aronggear said all the paramedics in Papua were grieving his death.

Due to Soeko's death, several doctors at the Wamena public hospital had requested leave from the hospital, which was understandable because doctors are also humans and need a sense of security, he said.

Wamena's deadly rioting occurred during a rally that native Papuan students staged on September 23.

Thirty-three people, including a medical doctor, were killed, while at least 77 others sustained injuries due to the riot that had also forced several thousands of residents, mostly non-native Papuans, to take refuge.

The masterminds of this deadly riot are allegedly members of the West Papua National Committee (KNPB), according to National Police Spokesman, Brig. Gen. Dedi Prasetyo.

Among the dead and the wounded were non-native Papuans who had been assaulted by rioters brandishing machetes and arrows.

On the day the rally took place, Commander of the 1702/Jayawijaya District Military Command Lt. Col. Candra Dianto said a gun battle between the Indonesian security personnel and a group of armed separatists also occurred around the Pasar Baru area. (INE)

Related news: Wamena riot survivors urged to not join exodus

Related news: MUI elicits governmental action for justice to Papua's Indonesians

Reporter: Hendrina DK, Rahmad Nasution
Editor: Fardah Assegaf

7) Papua enhances puskesmas' role in patient handling following riots

Jayapura (ANTARA) - The Papua Provincial Health Office is optimizing the role of community health centers (puskesmas) to tend to patients after riots broke out in Wamena, Jayawijaya District, on September 23, 2019.

"We will empower and utilize all community health centers and clinics at every refugee shelter," Secretary of the Papua Provincial Health Office Silwanus Sumule stated here on Thursday.

Sumule noted that the Papuan government has taken precautionary measures in the face of health cases, such as post-traumatic stress, injuries, and infections, which can possibly increase after riots in Wamena.

"Cases of infection due to wounds resulting from the riots can possibly increase. Hence, when conditions are safe, we have to be ready to provide health services required at the health centers," he remarked.

Sumule also forecast that cases of health problems in pregnant women are likely to spike since some of them at refugee shelters are at risk of ailing from psychological trauma after being displaced from their homes owing to riots.

"Hence, maternal and child healthcare -- in the midst of this emergency response period -- needs to be further intensified," he stated.

He also called for the need to maintain environmental health at refugee shelters in Papua to prevent outbreaks of certain diseases, including diarrhea, measles, and respiratory infections.

Related news: Wamena riot survivors ail from diarrhea, fever, skin itchiness
Related news: Jokowi dispatches humanitarian aid to Ambon, Wamena
Related news: 31 dead in Wamena rioting: Health Ministry
Reporter: Hendrina Dian Kandipi, Yuni Ar
Editor: Sri Haryati

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