Wednesday, March 4, 2020

1) Uncen students held a protest demanding authority to release Papuan political prisoners


2) Armed conflict surges in Papua's Mimika regency
3) MRPB: Papuan Special Autonomy Law Amendment should refer to people’s evaluation
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1) Uncen students held a protest demanding authority to release Papuan political prisoners

Published 7 hours ago on 4 March 2020 By Admin1



Hundreds of students of the University of Cenderawasih held a protest demanding the government to release seven Papuan political prisoners who are currently on trial at Balikpapan District Court, Kalimantan Timur. -Jubi/Hengky Yeimo

Jayapura, Jubi – Hundreds of students of the University of Cenderawasih held a protest in Jayapura, Papua on Monday (2/3/2020). They urge the authority to release seven political prisoners who are currently on trial at Balikpapan District Court. They also ask President Joko Widodo to follow up a report handed by lawyer Veronika Koman about 57 Papuan political prisoners and 243 dead civilians in Nduga, Papua, following the incident of the murder of PT Istaka Karya workers on 2 December 2018.
Wearing their university jackets, they called for the release of seven Papuan political prisoners. Buchtar Tabuni, Agus Kossay, Steven Itlay, Alexander Gobay, Feri Bom Kombo, Hengky Hilapork and Irwanus Uropmabin are the political prisoners who currently undergo their trial in Balikpapan. The protesters held posters and banners “Immediately Free Seven Political Prisoners in Kalimantan” and “Seven Prisoners of Racism Victims to Immediately Send Home to the Motherland West Papua.”

The chairman of the Executive Board of Uncen Law School Yops Itlay, in his oration in front of the demonstrators, said the authority must release and send the seven political prisoners home immediately. He further stated that the case of seven political prisoners should take in Papua, instead forcedly took to Kalimantan Timur for the trial.
In his speech, Itlay emphasised that the seven political prisoners are the victims of racism incident occurred in Surabaya on 16 August 2019. He considered the trial against the seven political prisoners and other Papuans involved in an anti-racism rally in Papua is not fair as it accused them as perpetrators (of riot).
“We are victims, but they pointed us as perpetrators. Today we held our protest because we are not animals. We are just like them, human beings created by God,” he spoke in front of the university gate in Waena, Jayapura.
In a statement read by Yops Itlay, the protesters also asked President Joko Widodo to immediately taking action on the report handed by lawyer Veronika Koman about the current 57 Papuan political prisoners and 243 civilians who died in Nduga, Papua. “The president of the Republic Indonesia to immediately taking action the report handed by human rights lawyer Veronika Koman about 57 political prisoners and 243 civilians died in Nduga, Papua, since December 2018,” read Itlay.
Furthermore, the protesters asked the Papuan Governor, Papuan House of Representatives and Papuan People’s Assembly to immediately taking a concrete step to repatriate Papuan students who are victims of racism and free the seven Papuan political prisoners. “[Authority] must immediately free the seven political prisoners, as well as Surya Anta and other Papuan friends in Jakarta,” said Yops Itlay.
Moreover, he said prosecutors and judges as part of the law enforcement apparatus should act impartially and respect the law. “The prosecutor’s office and the court must refer to law and justice, respect people’s equal rights before the law. If they do not listen to us, we students are ready to boycott PON (National Sport Event) 2020 in Papua,” he said.
Meanwhile, representing Uncen, the Vice-Rector III Yonatan Waromi who accompanied his students in the rally appreciated this peaceful demonstration. “This is a part of democracy that should maintain on the campus. We would support the freedom of expression on campus because students are the social control to the society,” said Waromi. (*)
 Reporter: Hengky Yeimo
Editor: Pipit Maizier


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2) Armed conflict surges in Papua's Mimika regency

Reports from West Papua indicate more deadly armed conflict in Mimika regency.
4:03 pm on 4 March 2020  

The West Papua National Liberation Army claims responsibility for a series of attacks on security forces in the Indonesian-controlled territory since last week.
A Liberation Army spokesman said its guerilla forces in Tembagapura shot dead an Indonesian soldier at the weekend.
He also said the fighters attacked a police vehicle on Monday, injuring up to eight personnel, in Tembagapura on the road to the Freeport gold and copper mine.
The Liberation Army, which is targeting the mine operations in its war on the Indonesian state, claims a Papuan civilian was last week shot dead by Indonesian military in a gold-panning area of a local river.
Papua's Police Chief Paulus Waterpauw said his forces were looking to arrest the Liberation Army's forces in Mimika, and its chief commanders in Papua.
A week ago, the Liberation Army also claimed it killed two Indonesian soldiers in neighbouring Nduga regency.
Violent exchanges between the Papuan forces and Indonesian joint military and police personnel have intensified in Nduga since late 2018 when the Liberation Army massacred at least 17 road construction workers.
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3) MRPB: Papuan Special Autonomy Law Amendment should refer to people’s evaluation
Published 8 hours ago on 4 March 2020 By Admin1
Jayapura, Jubi – The Chairman of West Papuan People’s Assembly (MRPB) Maxi Ahoren in the Extraordinary Plenary Meeting states MRP and MRPB on Friday (28/2/2020) have decided to withdraw the draft of the Papuan Special Autonomy Law amendment. The revision should be made based on people’s evaluation of the implementation of Papuan Special Autonomy Law, he said.
Maxi Ahoren confirmed Jubi on Monday (2/3/2020) that this decision made referring to Article 77 of the Law No. 21 of 2001 about Papuan Special Autonomy Law, in which highlight that Papuan people can propose the amendment to Indonesian House of Representatives or Indonesian Government via MRP and Papuan House of Representatives. Therefore, those who can evaluate the implementation of Papuan Special Autonomy is Papuan people, not a particular group or individuals, nor the government.

“We take it to the people, so they can observe ‘what have you done?’ because the Special Autonomy is for the people. It was born from people. So, we need to listen to the evaluation from them instead of the government officials,” said Ahoren.
Accordingly, he calls on all stakeholders to give Papuan people to evaluate the policy, because they have been learning, witnessing and experiencing the implementation of this policy. “We take it to the people. Let them assess whether if the special autonomy succeed or failed. If they think the special autonomy failed, we must think another step to take. It is also the rights of people,” said Ahoren.

Earlier, the MRP Chairman Timotius Murib stated the Extraordinary Plenary Meeting of MRP and MRPB passed four joint conclusions in which the withdrawal of Papuan Special Autonomy amendment draft was the one.
The plenary also agreed on an affirmative policy to prioritise indigenous Papuans as candidates of regents, deputy regents, mayors and deputy mayors in the Land of Papua. The decision broadens the affirmative action included in the Law No. 21 of 2001 on the Papuan Special Autonomy Law stated the candidates of the governor and vice governor in Papua must be indigenous Papuans.
“The first decision is about the Fulfilment of the Constitutional Rights of Indigenous Papuans in Political Recruitment in regards to the nominations of regents and deputy regents/mayors and deputy mayors in Papua and West Papua provinces. The recruitment must prioritise indigenous Papuans,” said Murib after closing the Extraordinary Plenary Meeting of MRP and MRPB in Sentani, Jayapura Regency on Friday (28/2/2020).
Murib further said that MRP and MRPB also agreed on Legal Protection and Human Rights towards indigenous Papuans. This decision stated indigenous Papuans must be treated equally like other Indonesian citizens before the Indonesian law. “The legal protection must meet the standards of humanitarian and human rights principles,” said Murib.
The protection towards Papuan students who study outside of Papua also become the third decision in the plenary. Murib admitted that the decision was made as a response to the persecutions and racism taunts against Papuan students in Surabaya on 16 August 2019, as well as the intimidation experienced by Papuan students in many cities in Indonesia following the racism incident in Surabaya.
“Since the incident of racism (in Surabaya), students from both Papua and West Papua provinces have been under pressure. They are feeling uncomfortable to study [outside of Papua]. Therefore, it needs a guarantee from the local government where they live to protect their rights before the law,” said Murib. (*)
 Reporter: Benny Mawel
Editor: Pipit Maizier
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