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Pacific Island Bishops make Surprise but Welcome Visit to Papua

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Visiting Pacific island bishops in Jayapura, West Papua - Jubi

Visiting Pacific island bishops in Jayapura, West Papua – Jubi

Jayapura, Jubi – Visiting Pacific island bishops have heard of on-going violence and repression faced by Papuan people during a rare visit to Indonesian’s most easterly province.

A delegation of 20 bishops from the Bishops Conference of Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands were also told of Papuan desires for independence from Indonesia, during a visit to the Papuan provincial capital, Jayapura.

Local rights activists were given only short notice about the visit as the bishops arrived in a vehicle convoy across the PNG and Indonesian border under military escort.

In a letter presented to the bishops, Catholic Women of West Papua wrote of the significance of the visit:

“Few foreigners and even fewer esteemed guests like yourselves are able to get permission to come, or are willing to risk visiting our country,” the statement said.

“We want you to know that we are not free. We are confined in a situation that is full of violence. Because of the Indonesian police and military we do not feel safe in our own land. We desire to determine our own future, freely and fairly. We want you to know that the United Liberation Movement for West Papua represents us. They have our full support.”

The ULMWP, formed in late 2014, brought together factions of the West Papua independence movement.

It has observer status at the Melanesian Spearhead Group, an influential regional forum, which includes representatives from PNG, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and New Caledonia’s indigenous Kanak movement.

The letter to the bishops, which included the president of the Bishops conference, Archbishop John Ribat of Port Moresby, implored support to resolve numerous cases of human rights abuse.

It blamed Indonesian authorities for alleged abuses, and accused the Church, at a local level, of silence on the issue.

“Our people experience violence and death because of the brutal actions of the Indonesian military and police,” the letter said.

“Every day more and more migrants arrive. We are becoming a minority in our land and even in our own church while the Indonesian people master all aspects of life. In fact, they (the State) are often the perpetrators or protect the perpetrators, so we feel we have nowhere to turn. Sadly the Catholic Church in West Papua is largely silent about this and does not give voice to our cry for justice.”

The letter calls on the Conference of Bishops to encourage the Pacific Island Forum to immediately send a human rights fact-finding mission to West Papua.

The letter also said Catholic Papuan women were ready to greet Pope Francis; expressing a hope that the pontiff would visit West Papua as part of a planned visit to Indonesia scheduled for July 2017. The bishops’ visit to Jayapura, follows the release of a Church report released last month containing allegations of recent military and police intimidation, beatings and torture, kidnapping and murder in West Papua.

The report author, Josephite Sister Susan Connelly, a respected human rights advocate, visited West Papua, accompanied by Brisbane archdiocese’s Catholic Justice and Peace Commission executive officer Peter Arndt.

They interviewed more than 250 Papuan community leaders.

Sr Connelly compared the situation there to “stepping back twenty years when I first went to East Timor”.

“The same oppressive security presence everywhere, the same suspicion, bewilderment, frustration and sadness,” she said. (*)

Source : Chatolic Leader

Headlines

Dozens of students arrested following the 10 hours tensions at Papuan student dormitory in Surabaya

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Dozens of students of Kamasan III Dormitory Surabaya who arrested in Surabaya Police Headquarter – IST

Jayapura, Jubi – Papuan students dormitory ‘Kamasan III’ in Surabaya was damaged by groups of the organisation called ‘Ormas Sekber Benteng NKRI & Pemuda Pancasila’. The incident occurred after two group members asked students to raise the Indonesian flag at their dormitory.

Public attorney from Surabaya Legal Aid Institute (LBH) Sahura told the tension between the crowd and students started at around 12.30 (local time) when some members of the group forced to enter the dormitory where located in Jalan Kalasan No. 10, Surabaya. “They forcibly entered the dormitory to raise the flag. When asked by the students who live there, there was a fight,” Sahura explained the cause of the riot which led to the destruction on Wednesday night (15/8/2018).

During the riot, a member of the organisation fell and was injured. At the same time, a student brought a machete to frighten the crowd who forced to come into the dormitory. The injured person then told the police that he was attacked by a student. Shortly after, the police arrived in the location.

“He claimed to be injured because in an attack, but it’s not true. Nevertheless, the students agreed to give the machete after negotiating with the police. Then the police left the scene,” said Sahura.

But then, Surabaya Police Chief the Senior Police Commissioner Rudi Setiawan ordered his subordinates to bring all students to the police headquarter. At first, dozens of these dorm residents refused to go, but then they got into the police truck.

During the scene investigation, military and police officers who mostly wore black clothes and slayers kept watching around the dormitory. According to the students, the tension occurred at around 12:30 at the local time when Pemuda Pancasila, Ormas Sekber Benteng NKRI and military and police officers invaded to their dormitory. They broke the fences and the door, then forced the students to raise the Indonesian in the dormitory.

Later, in the evening, at around 8:30 at local time, the joint security forces and members of the two organisations returned to the dormitory carrying a search warrant to arrest a student with the initial E.Y as a suspect. Thirty minutes later, the authority can break in the door and together with the members of the two organisation they seized the dormitory. At 22:00 the Papuan students were transported to Surabaya Police Headquarter by the police truck.

Surabaya Police Chief the Senior Police Commissioner Rudi Setiawan said there are about 25 Papuan students arrested for being question-related to persecution based on the video about the riots that showed there was a student brought a machete. He said the evacuation of the dormitory is to facilitate the process of the scene investigation.

“It has been regulated in the Indonesian law. So the police have a right to examine someone or carry out an investigation on the scene,” he said. (*)

 

Reporter: Victor Mambor

Editor: Pipit Maizier

 

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Environment

Papuan Film Festival pictures the voiceless

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Jayapura Deputy Mayor of Jayapura Rustan Saru (in the centre) photographed with the Chairperson of FFP II Organizing Committee Harun Rumbarar (in the right) and one of the visitors. – Jubi / Hengky Yeimo

Jayapura, Jubi – Jayapura City, Tuesday, 7 August 2018, visitors crowded in Lokabudaya Expo Museum Waena, Heram sub-district to attend the Papua Film Festival held by a film community Papuan Voice for three days from 7 to 9 August 2018.

A festival participant Mecky Yeimo said the films screened in the festival provide a lot of information about the land disputes between native landowners and investors. “I am happy because as Papuans we can get a lot of information about the deprivation of the rights of indigenous people in Papua,” he said.

Further, he said Papuans are commonly known for their culture of oral tradition, and the information in the films becomes an interesting issue to discuss in the future.

Meanwhile, the chairman of Pusaka Foundation Frangky Samperante, who met Jubi at the same place, said FFP is a forum where people can find out the facts that occurred in many areas in Papua. “Films can be the basis for people to make a judgment based on the information they see and hear,” said Samperante.

Furthermore, he considered this film community could become an agent for Papuans to voice their aspirations and to express their expressions. (*)

 

Reporter: Hengky Yeimo

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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Police come to ULMWP Region Animha during regional meeting

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Act of 1969 – WANI Tabloid

Jayapura, Jubi – The local police came to the regional meeting of the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) Region Animha which attended by regional leaders and delegates that held in their office in Merauke on Saturday (7/29/2018).

According to Deputy Chairperson of the ULMWP Region Animha, Ms Pangkrasia Yeem in a statement received by Jubi on Friday (08/03/2018), Merauke Police leading by the Head of Regional Police Intelligence Budi Santoso had entered the ULMWP Office without permission when the meeting had just finished.

“They asked what the meeting was about,” told Yeem. Then she explained to the police that it was the first meeting after the ULMWP Region Animha declared on 14 July 2018. “And the ULMWP has been sitting together with Indonesia in the Melanesian Spearhead Group,” she said.

After the visit, the ULMWP Region Animha continued their discussion on Thursday (08/02/2018) and read a statement rejecting the results of the 1969 Act of Free Choice. The event was held in the ULMWP Region Animha office and run smoothly.

In her statement, the Deputy Chairperson of the ULMWP Region Animha Pangkrasia Yeem said that the Act of Free Choice occurred 49 years ago in Papua from 14 July to 20 August 1969 was not valid because of not in accordance the international mechanisms.

“Its implementation was also full of intimidation, terror and manipulation. In practice, Indonesia mobilized the troops on a large scale to Papua to overcome the Free Papua movement,” she said. (*)

Reporter: Zely Ariane

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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