Nabire, Jubi – International Academics for West Papua (IAWP) is a
network that was started in 2016 by a group of academics concerned
about the ongoing human rights abuses in West Papua, will launch its
European region branch this month.
IAWP welcome academics from all countries and all disciplines. The aim
of the network is t to express extreme concern about the prevalence of
human rights abuses carried out by Indonesian security forces in West
It was officially launched in the Australia-Pacific region on
September 1 at the University of Sydney’s conference, ‘Beyond the
Pacific: West Papua on the World Stage’, hosted by the West Papua
The ribbon was cut by West Papuan leader, Jacob Rumbiak, to an
audience of Papuans and their international supporters. It also
included and welcome the network’s new patrons, Dr Benny Giay and
Professor Noam Chomsky.
The European branch of the International Academics for West Papua is
set to launch on Wednesday November 15 at the British Houses of
Parliament in 4:30PM Grimond Room, Portcullis House.
The branch will be launched during an introductory meeting of the
All-Party Parliamentary Group on West Papua, a cross-party group of
MPs and Lords which seeks to promote West Papuan self-determination
and human rights at a high political level.
The launch will feature talks from several academics and researchers
on issues from British foreign policy in West Papua to the thorny
issue of a proposed independence referendum.
It will be joined by parliamentarians, activists, journalists and
Below is IAWP official open letter launched in September 2016, as well
as it platform of foundation:
Open letter to the Government of Indonesia
We academics from around the world express extreme concern about the
prevalence of human rights abuses carried out by Indonesian security
forces in West Papua.
Since 1969, the Indonesian army has routinely fired into non-violent
demonstrations, burned down villages and tortured civilian activists
Despite being routinely barred from the provinces, independent
observers like Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International and Tapol
have all documented severe and endemic human rights violations by
Indonesia across West Papua. Indonesian special forces and
counter-terrorism units like Kopassus and Detachment 88 – trained by
Western countries – are implicated in beatings, extra judicial
assassinations and mass killings.
Such a heavy military presence, combined with racism and structural
economic discrimination against the indigenous Papuan population, can
only result in conflict and abuse.
We therefore call upon the government of Indonesia and our own
governments to take urgent and effective action to ensure that:
• The Indonesian military swiftly withdraws from West Papua and that
Indonesia demilitarise the region as a first step towards a peaceful
resolution to the conflict;
• Indonesia releases political prisoners and allows international
media, NGOs and observers into West Papua;
• The international community takes a firm stance on human rights
abuses in West Papua and calls for Indonesia to respect the Universal
Declaration on Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil
and Political Rights, to which Indonesia is a party.
• Military and police training and arms exports for Indonesia are
terminated until human rights abuses in West Papua cease, including
Australian, American, British, Canadian, Dutch, New Zealand, training
and funding of the Indonesian police’s counter-terrorism unit,
Detachment 88, at the Jakarta Centre for Law Enforcement Cooperation.
• Indonesia and the International Community recognize the historic
injustice of the 1969 ‘Act of Free Choice’, by which the population of
West Papua was denied its right to self determination and coerced into
joining Indonesia, and that they take steps to address the historic
injustice in a manner supported by the majority of Papuans.
Noam Chomsky, Professor Emeritis, MIT
Michael Webb, Lecturer, University of Sydney
Camellia Webb-Gannon, Research Fellow, Western Sydney University
Helen Gardner, Associate Professor, Deakin University
Grant McCall, Affiliate, University of Sydney
Nicholas Lawrence, Associate Professor, University of Warwick
Marcus Campbell, University of Sydney
Stephen Hill, Emeritus Professor, University of Wollongong
Julian McKinlay King, Researcher, West Papua Project, University of Sydney
Thomas Petersson, Senior Lecturer, Mälardalen University
Robert Amery, Senior Lecturer, University of Adelaide
Grant Walton, ANU
Selogadi Mampane, Part-time Lecturer, Vega University
Cornelis Mara, University of Papua
Megan Williams, Senior Lecturer, UTS
Michael Atkins, Lecturer, City of Bristol College
Vivienne Yeki, Teacher, Christchurch Teachers College
Adeline Cooke, Visiting Lecturer, University of Central Lancashire
Editor: Zely Ariane
Papua Governor says will facilitate Morobe Governor to visit Freeport
Jayapura, Jubi – Ginson Sauno, the Governor of Morobe Province of Papua New Guinea (PNG) asked Papua Governor Lukas Enembe to facilitate the visit of Morobe Provincial Government to the mine site of PT. Freeport Indonesia in Timika.
He conveyed this during a dinner that held by Morobe Provincial Government in Lae City on Thursday (09/20/2018) to welcome the governor and the contingent of Papua provincial government.
“Morobe’s capital, Lae City, often hosts some national events on mining. Therefore, we ask the Governor of Papua to facilitate us visiting PT. Freeport Indonesia,” said Governor Sauno.
Morobe is crucial for PNG because it has main ports in the Pacific region, agricultural industry and plantations, as well as cattle and poultry farms, mining and other major industries. So, it provides and distributes most of the daily needs of the national community.
Geographically, Morobe is a province located on the northern coast of Papua New Guinea with a population of around 750,000 people living in 33,705 km² area. As a result of the division of the Southern Highlands Province in 2012, the province becomes the most populous province in PNG which consists of Huon Peninsula, Markham River, Delta and the coastal areas along the Huon Bay.
In responding the request of Governor Saonu, Governor Enembe promised to facilitate a team of Morobe Province to visit the mining site of PT. Freeport Indonesia. “As far as known, we just gained 10 of 51 per cent of Freeport’s shares. So I will help to facilitate the visit of Governor Morobe and his team,” said the governor.
Besides visiting PT. Freeport Indonesia, Governor Saonu also offered Governor Enembe the teaching and learning exchange program. According to him, the main obstacle for two provinces in the collaboration is language. Therefore, Morobe Province will send their English teachers to Papua, and in turn, Papua Province will send the Indonesian language teachers.
Meanwhile, for the student exchange program, Governor Saonu offers a scholarship program for Morobe students who want to continue their higher education in Papua.
Governor Enembe has very welcomed this offer. “We have sent many Papuan students abroad for study. So we will follow up the offer from Governor Saonu soon,” he said.
He also regretted not being able to meet with Governor Saonu last year to sign the Letter of Intent (LoI) because at that time he had to report to the President of Indonesia in Jakarta.
“I also regret not being able to bring my office staff because I was just appointed as a governor for the second period a few days ago,” he added.
Regarding the demand of beef supply in PON (National Sports Event) 2020, Governor Saonu has a positive response. “We are ready to supply meat for PON 2020. We have the largest cattle farm in PNG as well as the chicken farm. This cooperation will benefit the two provinces,” said Governor Saonu.(*)
Reporter: Victor Mambor
Editor: Pipit Maizier
Latvian climber evacuated from Cartenz Peak
Timika, Jubi – A Latvian, Northern European climber, Mike Cruss, suffered a broken foot and was hypothermic while climbing Cartesz Peak on Thursday (January 18th).
Public Relation Officer of Timika SAR Team, Muhammad, said after receiving the report they immediately coordinated with PT Freeport Indonesia’s Emergency Response Group to carry out the relief effort.
“We also coordinate with Timika Airforce based, the travel agent of the climbers and the Timika Community Partners Hospital,” said Muhammad, Friday (January 19), in Timika.
On Friday morning SAR rescue team went to Cartensz Peak using helicopter owned by Papua Trans Mandiri company.
The helicopter returned to Timika Airport hangar on Friday morning at around 8:30 pm with Mike Cruss.
The victim was immediately rushed to RSMM Timika by ambulance to undergo treatment.
The information collected said that Mike Cruss made the climb to Cartensz Peak with eight other climbers.
Cruss and his friends were reportedly walking from Ilaga to Cartesz Peak, one of the world’s seven highest peaks, with a height of 4,884 meters above sea level on Thursday morning.
The streets are rocky and slippery with rain and cold temperatures, leaving the victim falling and having a right leg fracture and hypothermia.
“Victims are still undergoing medical treatment at the Emergency Installation of RSMM Timika,” said RSMM Public Relations Elfinus Omaleng. (Antara)
Human Rights violations in West Papua observed by Christian Conference of Asia
Jayapura, Jubi – A three-member pastoral solidarity team of the Christian Conference of Asia (CCA), visited West Papua, heard stories of grave human rights violations and repression against the indigenous West Papuans in their own home land.
The visit, organised by the CCA from 4 to 8 December 2017, was part of its pastoral accompaniment to churches and people who live in vulnerable situations in Asia.
During four days of intensive visits and meetings, indigenous West Papuans shared with the CCA delegation about the on-going repression and systematic human rights violations in West Papua, including the passing of laws that suppress freedom of speech and freedom of association.
“Impunity for the human rights abuses by the police and the military is a growing concern; the Special Autonomy Law is a dismal failure, as it did not meet the basic needs of the indigenous people of West Papua”, described the community leaders and civil society representatives.
“The Indonesian government systematically restricts the right to freedom of the press as well as the initiatives of West Papuans who come forward to monitor human rights violations. Many indigenous West Papuans are being arrested and detained for non-violent expressions of their political opinion. The indigenous West Papuans constantly face discrimination as well as violent attacks. Peaceful demonstrations are often dispersed by force. In many instances, non-violent participants have been arrested, detained and tortured, while others have been killed. Many prisoners and human rights activists have died while in detention. Reports of torture and ill treatment of political detainees have been increasing. Civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights are being violated”.
“CCA’s visit to West Papua was an opportunity to express solidarity with the struggling West Papuan indigenous people and listening to their grievances on behalf of CCA’s member constituencies and the Asian ecumenical movement”, said Bishop Dr. Daniel S. Thiagarajah from Sri Lanka, a member of CCA’s programme committee.
“A long-delayed pastoral solidarity visit to Papua was an expression of Asian churches and the CCA’s commitment to the CCA’s member church Gereja Kristen Injili di Tanah Papua (GKI), and the people of West Papua,” said Rev. Cindy Huang Shin-Yi, a young pastor of the Presbyterian Church of Taiwan and a member of CCA’s Executive Committee.
The visit of the CCA delegation included meetings with members of the Papuan Parliament, the Office of the Governor of Papua, interactions with the faculty members and students of the Izaak Samuel Kijne Theological College, GKI Jayapura Presbytery, the GKI Synod Board and staff members as well as meetings with leaders of different churches and communities in Sentani.
West Papua is a land rich in gold, copper, tropical rain forest, and coral reef. However, the majority indigenous Papuans continue to suffer as their ancestral lands have been confiscated; natural resources have been exploited by non-Papuans settled through government’s transmigration policies over the years. About 80% of the indigenous Papuans, the original sons and daughters of the land, now live in poverty without access to medical care, safe drinking water or education. They are constantly under attack by security forces.
The delegation was informed that, many indigenous West Papuans and others are infected with HIV/AIDS. The delegation visited the Walihole HIV/AIDS Clinic and the GKI Women’s Center. The church responds to the epidemic by setting up an HIV/AIDS clinic that serves the people in need of care. The church plays an active role in empowering the indigenous West Papuan women.
During the meetings, the CCA delegation was told by West Papuan community leaders that international community should come forward to implore the Indonesian government to stop human rights abuses in West Papua and to respect and protect the human dignity of West Papuans; to support the appeal of West Papuans to the government of Indonesia to open the door in order to seek a just and dignified political solution and respect the right and dignity of the indigenous people of West Papua to determine their own future through an all-inclusive Papua-Indonesia national dialogue.
“Having seen and heard the stories of the dire oppression of the indigenous people in West Papua, the CCA delegation learned first-hand about the pains of the suffering indigenous West Papuan people, and we share their pain and agony”, said Dr. Rey Ty, CCA programme coordinator for Building Peace and Moving Beyond Conflict. (*)
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