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    2) Press Release: West Papuan Independence Leader Benny Wenda visits Ghana

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    1) Election office burned  down in West Papua
    Nethy Dharma Somba, thejakartapost.com, Jayapura, Papua | Archipelago | Fri, March 25 2016, 9:00 PM - 
    The Kaimana Election Supervisory Committee (Panwas) office in West Papua was severely damaged by a fire of unknown origins on Thursday, coincidentally while the newly elected Kaimana regent and deputy regent, Mathias Mairuma and Ismail Sirfefa, were being inaugurated in Manokwari, the province’s capital.
    Panwas Kaimana member Dominiq Amdu told thejakartapost.com that the fire had burned the front part of the Panwas building and its guest room. 
    “Not all parts of the building were burned down. It’s only the front part of the building and the guest room that was damaged in the fire,” Dominiq said on Friday. 
    “The cause of the fire is not yet known. It is unlikely that the fire was caused by a short circuit because the office’s electricity, supplied by a prepaid token system, had run out last Saturday,” said Dominiq. He said the Panwas had reported the incident to the Kaimana Police.
    The Panwas Kaimana had rented and used the building since 2014. Dominiq said that since September 2015, the Panwas office had often been visited by demonstrators who protested its decision to recognize the candidate pair Mathias and Ismail as the legitimate Kaimana regent and deputy regent.
    “The Kaimana General Elections Commission [KPUD] declared that Pak Mathias Mairuma and his running mate had failed to pass the screening process to become candidates in the 2015 Kaimana regent and deputy regent election. After conducting an investigation, the Panwas concluded there was no reason not to accept him and his running mate as Kaimana regent and deputy regent candidates,” said Dominiq.
    The fire reportedly did not damage important election documents because following an increase in the number of protest rallies staged at the Panwas office, all important documents had been moved to more secure places.
    “It is hoped that the police can find the perpetrators responsible for the attack,” said Dominiq, implying that arson was the cause of the fire.
    Mairuma-Sirfefa was one of three candidate pairs, including Fredy Thie with Mohammad Lakutani and Hasan Achmad with Amos Oruw, who passed the screening tests to participate in the 2015 elections in the regency. (elf)
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    2) Press Release: West Papuan Independence Leader Benny Wenda visits Ghana

    MARCH 23, 2016
    Chief Benny Wenda’s statement on his recent visit to Ghana.
     
    Kwame Nkrumah………………………



    Benny Wenda meeting with Pan African supporters of West Papua’s freedom



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    https://awasmifee.potager.org/?p=1383

    PT Selaras Inti Semesta continues logging, but isn’t giving work to Zanegi villagers

    [awasMIFEE note: PT Selaras Inti Semesta is a subsidiary of the Medco Group, which is also developing industrialised rice production on the Merauke area]
    Merauke, Jubi – the community in Zanegi village, Malind District has expressed their disappointment in a company which has been felling the trees in their forest and processing the wood, PT Selaras Inti Semesta. The problem is, after around three years of operation, PT Selaras Inti Semesta is not providing work for a single member of the community.
    “Actually in 2010 when the company started work, around 30 villagers from Zanegi were recruited by the company and given work. However, in 2012, their employment was terminated, with the company giving the reason that no more logging work would take place. But actually logging has continued until the present day”, village head Ernes Kaize told Tabloid Jubi on Wednesday (23/03/2016).
    Kaize said that over the last three years, local people who hold customary rights in the area have not been given work. This is despite an agreement with the company that villagers would be given work for as long as the company remained in operation.
    He said that he had visited the company leadership repeatedly and asked about this agreement to provide a livelihood for local people. However unfortunately, the response has been less than satisfactory. “Honestly, I’m getting bored of going to the company, but never getting a clear response”, he said.
    When asked about the amount of land used, Kaize admitted that he didn’t have a clear idea. “I’ve already tried to ask how many hectares of the community’s forest has been felled and how much will be felled, but the company did not give me the data”, he said.
    He said that where the land had been cleared, it had been replanted. But this was not the case everywhere. “We hope that the company is truly committed to replanting trees in the areas it has felled”, he said.
    The Zanegi village secretary, Arnold Basik-Basik confirmed that during the last three years, there were no longer any people from their village working for PT Selaras Inti Semesta. The company fells trees which are then brought to Boepe for processing and sent out of the area.

    Fresh bushmeat is a important commodity in Zanegi village.

    The people of Zanegi village’s source of livelihood has not changed over time. They rely on being able to hunt deer and cassowaries to sell their meat.
    “Selling cassowary and deer meat is a way that people here can get some income. But it’s not reliable because both deer and cassowary are much rarer than before. “
    This is because of PT Selaras Inti Semesta which has been logging the forest since 2010, and the forest ecosystem is slowly changing.
    Meat can be sold for 30,000 Rupiah a kilo. “That’s actually a very low price. However, the community needs money to buy essential goods such as rice, so we still sell the meat we hunt.”
    The Zanegi village secretary Arnold Basik-Basik said that apart from meat, tilapia and snapper fish are other key commodities, especially in the rainy season. In the dry season, people catch the snakehead murrel, which is common in the swamps.
    ----------------------------

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    2) Government pledges to settle human right cases soon

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    A google translate of article in Jubi. Be-aware google translate can be a bit erratic . 
    Original bahasa line at


    1) Strengthening Indonesia’s presence in the South Pacific
  • /

  • Jakarta, Jubi - Plan delegation visits Indonesia to Papua New Guinea and the Republic of Fiji, March 30-April 3, 2016 confirms the seriousness of Jakarta in strengthening bilateral relations with countries in the South Pacific region.

    Visits are planned led by Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs, Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, to both countries member Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) it was not the first, cabinet member in the administration of President Joko Widodo.

    Minister of Foreign Affairs, Retno L.P.Marsudi, has made his first visit to Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands and Fiji. During his visit to the Solomon Islands, February 28, 2015, Foreign Minister received Minister of Foreign Affairs Retno Milner Tozaka in Honiara.


    Both foreign ministers admit that both Indonesia and the Solomon Islands have the background and Melanesian cultural heritage which can help realize a closer bilateral relations for the benefit of both countries and peoples.

    Both Foreign Ministers also recognized the importance of the principle of mutual respect for territorial integrity in building bilateral relations in addition to strengthening cooperation in economic and community ties, especially through capacity building and technical assistance.

    Regarding the importance of the position of countries in the South Pacific region for the foreign policy of Indonesia has also affirmed Deputy Foreign Minister A.M. Fachir on 20th MSG Summit which took place at Heritage Park Hotel, Honiara, Solomon Islands, June 26, 2015.

    For Indonesia, which has 11 million diaspora Melanesia spread in Papua, West Papua, Maluku, North Maluku and East Nusa Tenggara, the Pacific region is' one of the top priorities ", he said in a speech before the leaders of the member countries MSG.

    The state visit of President Joko Widodo to Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, on 11-12 May 2015 at the invitation of Prime Minister Peter O'Neill is 'a real reflection of these priorities', said Wamenlu A.M.Fachir.

    As disclosed Wamenlu a forum receive full membership Indonesia and give observer status to the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP), the commitment of Indonesia to MSG 'real and concrete'.

    Even Indonesia is committed to helping the countries members of the MSG in order to engage more deeply with the wider international community through the Forum Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) and the Asian-African Conference.

    In view Wamenlu A.M.Fachir, open connectivity between Melanesian societies in the member countries and 11 million citizen MSG Melanesian descent spread across five provinces will pave the way for more open access to the Indonesian market is huge.

    "Willing to be the gate, even Indonesia could also act as a gateway for products of countries in the South Pacific region to enter the markets of member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), 'he said.

    Opportunities of cooperation between Indonesia and the countries members of the MSG was not confined to the field of economy and trade. As a fellow island nation, cooperation in the field of disaster mitigation of climate change impacts and improving the welfare of the people is very open.

    But above all the opportunity to strengthen bilateral relations and cooperation and multilateral, Wamenlu A.M.Fachir remind MSG Establishment Agreement of 2007 in which "the MSG members fully respect the principles of international law governing international relations".

    Among the principles are absolutely respected members of the MSG it is the principle of sovereignty, equality independence for the whole nation, and not to interfere in the internal affairs of countries, he said.

    What was delivered Wamenlu RI in front of MSG in Honiara forum was very unfounded moreover internationalization Papua issue and campaign contains a lawsuit over the validity of the implementation of the Referendum Act of Free Papua through (Act) 1969 continues.

    Professor of the Faculty of Law, University of Indonesia, Prof. Hikmahanto Juwana, also admitted this reality in which he gave an introductory note to the book by Nico Gere titled "Maintaining Sovereignty Indonesia in Papua: Revitalization Principles of Sovereignty and Non-intervention principle of the UN Charter" (2015).

    "Papua is Indonesia. But some people in Papua and a number of non-governmental organizations abroad not accept this fact. Therefore, the sovereignty of Indonesia in Papua shall continue to be treated, "he wrote in a book published Perum LKBN Between that.

    In the midst of this reality, the Indonesian delegation's visit to Papua New Guinea, a country that will host the summit of the 21 MSG in 2017, and the Republic of Fiji do.

    According to the Deputy for Communications, Information and Administrative Coordinating Ministry for Politics Marsda Ruchyan Agus Barnas, during a visit to Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, March 30, Coordinating Minister for Politics Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan scheduled to meet with Prime Minister Peter O'Neill.

    From Port Moresby, the Indonesian delegation will continue the mission of bilateral visit to Suva, the capital of the Republic of Fiji, March 31 to April 1. In this visit to Suva, Legal and Security Affairs also planned to meet with the Prime Minister of Fiji J.V.Bainimarama.

    "Among the agenda of the visit the delegation of Indonesia to the Republic of Fiji it is the delivery of humanitarian aid and sending a contingent of Army engineer troops to assisting the process of reconstruction after Hurricane Winston category 5 which ravaged parts of the country last February," said Agus.

    Indonesia helping hand to the government and people of Fiji at this moment reflect on the meaning of the proverb "a true friend is a friend in times of joy and sorrow". The same was done when Vanuatu Indonesia diporakporadakan by storm Hurricane Pam on March 17, 2015. (*)

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    2) Government pledges to settle human right cases soon


    Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Coordinating Minister for Political Affairs, Law and Security Luhut Binsar Padjaitan said the government resolved to settle human rights cases "in not too long time." 

    "We are studying ways to settle all human rights cases in Indonesia. In Papua there are 16 cases. President Joko Widodo has passed order to settle the cases as soon as possible," Luhut said here on Tuesday. 

    The government will reopen all cases and ask all including the Human Rights Commission and Papua community leaders to contribute to finding a solution to the problem openly, he said.  

    "If possible this year. Settlement of human rights cases must be transparent mainly through peaceful approaches," he said.

    He said the government is trying to work out a plan to provide scholarship for Papua students to study various technologies abroad. 

    The regional administrations would be asked for their role in the development Papua to prevent making a similar mistake when granting Freeport the contract with Papua not given enough share of the benefit from their land. 

    Freeport has a large gold and copper mining concession in Papua.

    Luhut said the government welcomes plan of the regional administration of Papua to build an industrial estate in Memberamo.(*)

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    2) Police Use Law Enforcement Operation as Alibi on Security Budget : KNPB

    3) Human Rights Activists Criticise Military Operation in Papua Central Highland

    4) Migrants Shouldn’t Become a Bum in Papua, says Minister Luhut
    5) Official Admits Papua Public Service Slow
    6) Strengthening Indonesian Existence in Southern Pacific

    7) Police Should Authorise Students’ Rally on Minister Luhut Panjaitan’s Plan Visit

    8) Papuan Women Win PRC Beating Thousands of Research Applicants

    9) Papua Investors Reach 1, 831 as per February 2016

    10) Jayapura Regency Need 500 Teachers

    11) Poverty in Papua Should be Addressed, says Indonesian Legislator

    12) Poor Infrastructure Affects Tourism in Papua


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    1) Victim of Police Violence Seeks for Justice

    28 March 2016






    Sorong, Jubi – Albert Martinus Mnsen, victim of torture allegedly conducted by Mobile Brigade personnel on 1 January 2016, is still seeking justice.
    As part of a local tradition, he joined other residents to celebrate the New Year’s Eve with dancing and flute-tamborine convoy. The event coincided with the arrival of the President Joko Widodo to Papua Barat Province to observe sago manufacture project in Sorong Selatan and local airport Dominique Eduard Ossok Airport.

    There were about twenty personnel of Mobile Brigade Detachment A Manokwari crossing the road Jalan Tampa Garam, Sorong City to return to their post at Suprau while securing the president’s arrival. The road was crowded with convoy of dancers and vehicles.
    At that time the victim Albert Mnsen along with his son pushed the car and a personel of Mobile Brigade came to help. But then he beat the victim’s head with his riffle butt until he collapsed.
    “I was taken to the hospital once I was down,” said Alberth Mnsen to reporter in Sorong City on Sunday (27/3/2016).
    After making the police report at Sorong Barat Police Station, facilitated by Mobile Brigade Detachment B Pelopor Sorong, they agreed to resolve the dispute amicably. But according to Mnsen, up to now he is still waiting for further action from the Mobile Brigade as agreed in their agreement, such as the promise for taking the victim to get medical treatment in Makassar has not yet materialized. The victim is still got pain because of a lump in his throat. Even while sleeping, he’s still in pain. “I still feel pain,” he said.
    For that reason, he asked to the local police to immediately solve this problem.
    Mobile Brigade B Detachment B Pelopor Sorong Commander, Police Commissionaire Eko on 8 January 2016 said Mobile Brigade made agreement with the victim’s family to solve the problem amicably and bear the cost of treatment, even if he got medical referral to Makassar.

    “We have agreed with the family. Although it was done by personnel from Manokwari, but we have obligation to assist all cost of treatment,” he said. (Niko MB/rom)

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    2) Police Use Law Enforcement Operation as Alibi on Security Budget : KNPB



                                         General Chairman of the Central West Papua National Committee, Victor Yeimo – Jubi


    Jayapura, Jubi – West Papua National Committee (KNPB) stated the idea of legal security operation launched by Papua Regional Police is merely an alibi to seek allocation for security funds.
    “No need to create a new operation for security budget. Isn’t it the operation occurred everyday?” said KNPB Chairman Victor Yeimo on Wednesday (23/3/2016).
    He believed the security personnel used the last and recent shooting incidents as an excuse to get the additional budget for security.
    Yeimo also suspected the security personnel were also retained the insurgent group led by Lekakha Telenggen who shot four civilians on last week. “They put up a fight, but on the other hand, their resistance was being used by Indonesian Military and Police to obtain bargaining power on security project,” he said.
    Papua Regional Police is currently organizing a law enforcement operation to be conducted in three regencies, which they call as Black Triangle. Those are Puncak Regency, Puncak Jaya Regency and Lanny Jaya Regency.
    “It is not certain when the law enforcement operation would be conducted due to permission and further guidance from commanding officer. But the most important is the plan design has been started,” said Papuu Police Chief Inspector General Police Paulus Waterpauw in Jayapura.
    He said, in doing the law enforcement operation, the Police will collaborate with the Military.
    Lekakha Telenggen did not decline or confirm the accusation on his group over the shooting incident. However, he stated ready for taking responsibility if his group did the shooting.
    “I am ready taking responsibility of the shooting over those four construction workers if my men did it,” he said. He also confessed to shot 78 military and police personnel up to now.(Victor Mambor/rom)

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    3) Human Rights Activists Criticise Military Operation in Papua Central Highland

    24 March 2016

    Wamena, Jubi – Human rights activists criticized law enforcement operation plans in ‘red triangle’ regions of Puncak, Puncak Jaya and Lanny Jaya regencies by security forces.
    The chairman of the Papua Human Rights and Law Enforcement Advocacy, Theo Hesegem, said law enforcement operations in Papua central highlands are not a solution to resolve the problems.
    “I think it is exaggerated, what is needed in Papua is a dialogue with people, not military or law enforcement operations,” he said in Wamena, Jayawijaya on Wednesday (23/3/2016).

    According to him, there is no major terrorist threat in Papua, because the OPM (Papua Free Movement) is an organized group established for years and its ideology is certainly different from religiousy-motivated terrorists. So, it is not proper to link the OPM with the terrorist.
    He eventually thought the law enforcement or military operation is an evidence of the Central Government’s inability to resolve the problem in Papua for decades.
    “Central Government must observe the problem in Papua carefully. The economic, health and educational approaches are not enough, thus, a political approach is needed. And the law enforcement would trigger the human right violations that would degrade the Indonesian image upon the international community,” he said.
    In addition, the law enforcement operation will not guarantee on conflict resolution in Papua, on contrary it is concerned to cause many fatalities among civilians and have potency of human rights violations.
    Yap Thiam Hien Award 2009 winner Pastor John Jonga said the law enforment or military operation is exaggerated effort in responding the shooting incident occurred in Sinak Sub-district of Puncak Regency, Papua Province.
    “If the consideration is non-conducive atmosphere, both Police and Military must have self-reflection because I see a disappointment on law enforcement that misconducted by Military and Police,” he said.
    I am eventually fear if the law enforcement would sacrifice the civilians. “Better the Police and Military to initiate an approach to such groups who opposed the Republic of Indonesia. Because by using the military approach, would they guarantee to not wrongly arrest or shot the people; moreover if they go to the forest for hunting people randomly because they don’t know who perpetrators are,” he said. (Islami/rom)



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    4) Migrants Shouldn’t Become a Bum in Papua, says Minister Luhut
    30 March 2016
    Jayapura, Jubi – Migrants should not become burdens by being destitute in Papua, Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Luhut B. Panjaitan said.
    “If they are destitute, they become a burden to the local government,” Luhut told Jubi, responding to a question on the migrant influx to Papua, Monday (28/3/2016).
    He said he agreed with Papua Provincial Government’s plans to limit the number of people who come to Papua.
    On the same occasion, Papua Governor Lukas Enembe told the minister about the existing Special Regional Regulation on population control.
    “Special Regional Regulation on entry restrictions to Papua has been established since the former Governor Bas Suebu, but somehow, its enforcement has not worked,” said Enembe.
    According to him, migrants have increased the number of poor population in Papua. “Many jobless and unskillful people have continuously come to Papua,” said Enembe.
    Responding the Governor Enembe, the minister said if the Special Regulation is not contradictive with the existing Law, it would gain support of the Central Government. “We’ll check it,” he said.
    The Indonesian Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs will spend two days in Papua, from Monday to Tuesday (28-29 March 2016) and continue his mission to Fiji and Papua New Guinea on 30 March 2016.
    He will pass US$5 million donation from the Indonesian Government to Fiji Government whose citizens recently stroked by Winston hurricane. (Victor Mambor/rom)

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    5) Official Admits Papua Public Service Slow
    23 March 2016
    Jayapura, Jubi – The assistant secretary for Social Welfare and Economic Affairs at the Papua government admitted that civil servants have been slow in providing services to the public.
    Elia Loupatty said it was reflected through numerous complaints addressed by the public as users, he said in Jayapura on Tuesday (22/3/2016).
    “It indicates the government as a public servant has not entirely created a system of service that is acceptable to the public’s eyes,” he said.
    According to Loupatty, as public service improvement adviser of public service administrator, the Indonesian Ombudsman initiated an investigation regarding to compliance of public service administrator in the implementation of Law No. 25/2009 about public service.
    “Our services are still unable to meet public’s expectations which is reflected by unintelligible, discriminative, and complicated services to public, and so on,” he said.
    He explained the current condition could not be separated from the low quality of public service administrators, unfulfilled standard and low community participation.
    “Public is the main core of new paradigm about ‘new public service’, the alteration of public position that formerly known as ‘clients and constituents’ becoming ‘customers’ and now resuming ‘citizen’,” he said.
    He added public is not merely an object of services but should be placed as subject. “Services to public are integrated efforts in creating good, clean and efficient government to improve the welfare for the entire citizens,” he said. (*/rom)
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    6) Strengthening Indonesian Existence in Southern Pacific
    30 March 2016

    Jakarta, Jubi – The visit of an Indonesian delegation to Papua New Guinea and Republic Fiji on 30 March to 3 April 2016 confirms the seriousness of Jakarta in its efforts to strengthen bilateral relations with the countries in the Southern Pacific region.
    The visit led by the Coordianating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Luhut Binsar Panjaitan to two members of the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) is not the first conducted by a cabinet member of Widodo’s administration.
    The Minister of Foreign Affairs Retno L.P. Marsudi made her first visit to Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and Fiji recently. The Minister of Foreign Affairs Milner Tozaka in Honiara welcomed her during her visit to Solomon Islands on 28 February 2015. 
    Both foreign ministers admitted both Indonesia and Solomon Islands have Melanesian background and cultural heritage that could help the realization of close bilateral relations between two countries for the benefit of both contries and people.
    They both also recognized the importance of the principle of mutual respect on territorial integrity in building the bilateral relations of two countries in addition to strengthening the partnership in economic and human relationship sectors in particular through the capacity building and technical assistance.
    Regarding to valuable position of the countries in the Southern Pacific region for the Indonesian foreign political policy, it has confirmed by the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs A.M. Fachir at the 20th MSG Summit held at Heritage Park Hotel, Honiara, Solomon Islands on 26 June 2015.
    For Indonesia, which has 11 million of Melanesian ascendants spreading in five provinces of Papua, Papua Barat, Maluku, Maluku Utara and Nusa Tenggara Timur, Pacific region is ‘a main priority’, he said during his speech before the leaders of MSG country members.
    The President Joko Widodo’s official visit to Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea on 11 – 12 May 2015 by the invitation of Prime Minister Peter O’Neill is ‘a real reflection of this priority’, said Deputy Minister A.M. Fachir.
    As conveyed by the Deputy Minister before the forum, which accepted the full membership of Indonesia and gave observer status to ULMWP, the commitment of Indonesia for MSG is ‘real and concrete’. Even Indonesia committed to assist the MSG country members to be more involved with the broader international community through Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation and Asia Africa Conference.
    On Fachir’s point of view, the open access of connectivity between Melanesian community in MSG country members and 11 million Indonesian citizens of Melanesian ascendants spreading in five Indonesian provinces would pave the way for more open access to the broader Indonesian market.
    “Indonesia is willing to be the gate, even it could also act as a gateway for products of the countries in the Southern Pacific region to enter to the ASEAN market,” he said.
    The opportunity of collaboration between Indonesia and MSG country memebrs is not limited in economic and trading sectors, but also cooperation in disaster mitigation due to the impact of climate change and improvement of people’s welfare is very opened.
    But above the entire opportunities in strengthening both bilateral and multilateral relations, Deputy Minister A.M. Fachir reminded the agreement on MSG Establishment in 2007, in which mentioned ‘MSG members are fully respect the principles of the international law governing the international relations’.
    Among those principles, the MSG members must respect to the principles of sovereignty, equal independence to the entire nation, and do not intervene the domestic affairs of the country members, he said.
    What the deputy minister in MSG Forum in Honiara delivered was very unfounded moreover the internationalization of Papua issue and campaign containing of lawsuit over the validity of the implementation of the Referendum Act of Free Papua 1969 keep ongoing.
    Professor of the Faculty of Law from the University of Indonesia, Professor Hikmahanto Juwana admitted this reality in his introductory note to the book by Nico Gere titled “Maintaining Indonesian Sovereignty in Papua: Revitalization of the Principles of Sovereignty and Non-intervention in the UN Charter’ (2015.
    “Papua is Indonesia. But some people in Papua and a number of NGOs abroad still could not accept this reality. Therefore, the Indonesian sovereignty in the land of Papua shall continue to be treated,” he wrote in the book published by Perum LKBN Antara.
    In the midst of this reality, the visit of the Indonesian delegation to Papua New Guinea, a country that will host the 21st MSG Summit in 2017, and Republic of Fiji is conducted.
    According to Deputy of Communication, Information and Administrative Department of the Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs, Agus Ruchyan Barnas, in his visit to Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea on 30 March, the Minister Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan is scheduled to meet with the Prime Minister Peter O’Neill.
    From Port Moresby, the Indonesian delegation would continue their bilateral mission to Suva, the capital of Republic of Fiji on 31 March to 1 April. In the visit to Suva, the minister is also scheduled to meet the Prime Minister of Fiji V.J. Bainimarama.
    “Included in the agenda of visit of the Indonesian delegation to the Republic of Fiji is the delivery of human aid and deployment of a contingent of army engineer to help the reconstruction process for the post-Winston hurricane disaster that hit the country in last February,” said Agus.
    A helping hand from Indonesia to the government and people of Fiji is reflecting the proverb “a true friend is a friend in joy and sorrow”. Indonesia did the similar act when Vanuatu was destroyed by Pam hurricane on 17 March 2015. (*/rom)
    ———————————————————

    7) Police Should Authorise Students’ Rally on Minister Luhut Panjaitan’s Plan Visit

    25 March 2016


    Jayapura, Jubi – Papua councilor Laurenzus Kadepa criticized the Jayapura Municipal Police for not allowing the students of Cenderawasih University to conduct a peaceful rally against a minister’s plan to visit Papua at the end of the month.
    He said police made up excuses for banning the protest.
    “If the Police said the students did not attach the identity of protest coordinator or not confirm the route of rally or not explain the content of banner, and not give the obvious time as using the term of Papua time instead of WIB, WITA and WIT which is used to indicate time differences in Indonesia, those reasons are certainly ridiculous,” said Kadepa to Jubi by phone on Thursday (24/3/2016).

    Therefore he regretted it and asked the Police to not consider the students’ rally from a negative point of view. “Police must stop judging the students’ rally from a negative point of view. The reason to not give authorization on the rally is not obvious. It indicates the Police still close the space of democracy in Papua,” he said.
    Kadepa who always criticized the minister’s statement about Papua said he personally supported the students. “I support the students and Papuan people to protest the minister’s plan to visit Papua. We do not need a person like Luhut Panjaitan. He hurt our heart as Papuans for many times,” he said.
    Other politician and councilor Emus Gwijangge similarly thought the Police should not suppress the democracy in Papua. “As long as the rally is not anarchies and destructive, I think it is just fine. Why should it be banned? Let the students express their aspiration,” he said.
    According to him, to express the aspiration in public is guaranteed by Law. Therefore he expected the Police could be wise in dealing with peace rally all the time. (Arjuna Pademme/rom)
    ——————————————————————

    8) Papuan Women Win PRC Beating Thousands of Research Applicants

    28 March 2016

    Jayapura, Jubi – The international research committee of the Australian National University has announced that three Papuan women has been selected in the Pacific Research Colloquium 2016.
    The women are lecturer of the International Relations at the Faculty of Social and Political Science of Cenderawasih University, respectively are Melyana R. Pugu, Elvira Rumkabu and Mariana Buiney.
    Melyana R. Pugu said they managed to beat thousands of research proposals by other applicants. “For 2016, we have three indigenous Papuan women who passed the international research competition held by the Australian National University. There are thousands of applicants but three of us made it through the selection,” said Melyana R. Pugu to reporter in Jayapura on Saturday (26/3/2016).
    She explained that she would conduct a research titled ‘Model of Indonesia-PNG Border Area Management of Keerom District’, while her colleague Elvira Rumkabu has research on ‘Special Autonomy and Oppositional Dichotomies of ‘Komin’ – ‘Amber’ Identity in Papua Province and Mariana Buiney would go on reseach on ‘The Impacts of Trans Border Crime in the Human Security of the People of Skow and Enjoying Border Areas between the Republic of Indonesia and Papua New Guinea’. dan Papua New Guinea’.
    “So, of thousands of research proposals received by the committee, they have selected 20 researchers to participate in the presentation seminar held in the Australian national University, in which they will learn about new research method in addition to the method they have learned before,” she said.
    She continued the presentation seminar is also conducted in the Southern Pacific region, including New Zealand. The seminar has very positive impact, such as to strengthen a good relationship with Pacific including Australia and New Zealand.
    “It is to bond the Pacific researchers through working with the experienced academicians who specialized in the social researches in this region,” said Ms. Pugu. (Abeth You/rom
    ———————————————-

    9) Papua Investors Reach 1, 831 as per February 2016

    25 March 2016

    Jayapura, Jubi – Director of the Indonesian Stock Exchange (BEI) Papua Representative Office Kresna Aditya Payokwa said the number of investors in Papua increased to 1,831 companies as of February, from only 500 in 2012.
    “Based on our current data, there are 1,831 investors in Papua as per February 2016, and they are mostly located in Jayapura,” said Payokwa in Jayapura on Thursday (24/3/2016).
    In 2012, he added, the number of investors was still under 500 people, but each year the number is increased to 1,100 companies in 2015 and 1,831 companies as per February 2016. According to him, Papuan people are currently interesting to investment and to know more about stock exchange.
    “Thus, BEI is not only focusing on the increment number of new investors, but also attempting to promote the needs to invest as well as to provide education to the community who want to know about the stock exchange,” he said.
    In addition, he said, in Jayapura City, BEI also collaborate with some universities in order to provide education to the students. “We have worked with several campuses in Jayapura such as the University of Cenderawasih and University of Yapis Papua by opening the investment galary,” he said.
    He added, through the increment of investors and public interest to get to know about stock exchange, BEI is planning to open the representative office in Papua Barat Province. (*/rom)
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    10) Jayapura Regency Need 500 Teachers
    24 March 2016
    Sentani, Jubi – Jayapura Regency said it need 500 teachers more to serve in early childhood and primary education.
    “We still need as many as 500 teachers for basic education, such as pre-school, kindergarten and elementary school as well,” said Jayapura Regent Matius Awoitau in Sentani on Wednesday (23/3/2016).
    The local government took an effort to fulfill the teachers’ requirement by hiring some educators to place in each level of basic education.

    “Gradually, we will do this effort. Those who contracted as teacher would be evaluated within a year. The evaluation result would determine whether their contract could be extended or replaced by new recruitment,” he said.
    The regent also asked the relevant office to calculate the number of teachers and, including identifying the schools in teachers’ needs.
    “Based on data from relevant office, we would identify which schools have lack of teachers and how many teachers they need,” he said.
    Meanwhile the Head of Jayapura Education Office Alpius Toam admitted to coordinate with several schools that need more teachers.
    “We cannot make recruitment in large number, we need a sort of data on teacher’s requirement from each school. Therefore in near future we will coordinate with schools that lack of teachers,” Toam said. (Engel Wally/rom)
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    11) Poverty in Papua Should be Addressed, says Indonesian Legislator


    Jayapura,Jubi – Commission VIII of the Indonesian House of Representatives for Religious, Social, Women’s Empowerment and Children Protection and Natural Disaster expected the government to promptly address the poverty in Papua.
    Commission VIII Deputy Chairman Deding Ishak on Tuesday (22/3/2016) in Jayapura said the poverty in Jayapura should not become a paradox or a contradictive fact with current situation.
    According to Deding, series of program issued by the Ministry of Social to eliminating the poverty, including Family Hope Program (PKH), Shared Business Group (KUB), and Convenient Housing and other programs, take attention of the Commission VIII.

    “It is certainly becoming our attention in the Commission VIII, in particular concerning to PKH, which is based on the presentation by Papua Social Office, it has not been entirely covered 29 regencies/municipality but only reached four or five regencies. So, many people have not received that program,” he said.
    He explained the problem was included the transportation access in Papua. Due to geographical condition, it’s difficult to reach some regions in particular located in the highland area that only could be reached by plane with quite expensive cost.
    “The government certainly must consider this problem, especially in preparing budget allocation,” he said.
    He added Papua has the Special Autonomy law but the implementation wasn’t optimum, therefore the Commission VIII highly appreciated the proposal on Special Autonomy Law revision.
    “It is related to how can we speed up the development process in Papua to be experienced and appreciated by Papuan people in particular,” he said. (*/rom)
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    12) Poor Infrastructure Affects Tourism in Papua

    23 March 2016



    Jayapura, Jubi – A lack of infrastructure has become an impediment to the growth of tourism and creative economy at local levels in Papua.
    “Having a tourism object but without access to go there means we can’t sell it,” said Pagawak to Jubi on Tuesday (22/3/2016).
    Therefore, Papua Tourism and Creative Economy Office continues to work with different sectors and stakeholders including provincial and regional public work offices in preparing the infrastructures such as road access and other existing facilities.
    “The partnership, which is not limited to the government but also the private sectors, keep ongoing in order to help the local residents to get benefit from the existing tourism attraction,” he added.
    Concerning to growth of tourist rate, David Pagawak revealed his office is currently designing, programing and working with regional tourism stakeholders to develop the cultural festival and hold the national and international events to promote Papua culture to the world.
    “We hope it’s not only 20 thousand but 30 thousand of tourists would come to Papua,” Pagawak said.
    Further Papua Tourism and Creative Economy Office is planning to hold the Papua Airshow combined in Sentani Lake Festival in the next June, while the competition of Papua Tourism Ambassador and Tanah Merah Bay Festival would be held in October.
    In separate place, the Association of Indonesian Tour and Travel Agencies (ASITA) DPD Papua Chairman, Au Sitepu targeted 10 thousand people to come to Papua as international tourists within the quarter year of 2016. Based on data from previous year, the number of international tourist visiting to Papua is increased to 10 – 15 percent in the first quarter of 2016, while the number of domestic tourist could not be predicted as it is rarely to be recorded.
    “For the international tourists, we can get the accurate data from the police’s report, as they have to obtain the letter of permit,” he said.
    He added, in the beginning of the year, the increment of the international tourists’ visit could be traced when the cruise ship Coral Expedition docking at Jayapura Port on several times ago. He also agreed with PHRI Papua that tourism in Papua needs more serious attention from the government. (Sindung Sukoco/rom)
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    Sister Susan Connelly interviewed on ABC

    http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/religionandethicsreport/west-papua-,-another-east-timor/7281406

    West Papua: another East Timor?

    Prominent nun and human rights advocate Susan Connelly of the Sisters of St Joseph has just returned from a fact finding mission to West Papua. She is one of the authors of  We Are in Danger, a report on the situation there.
    It refers to allegations of torture and death at the hands of Indonesian police and military; and even an attempted “slow motion genocide” of the indigenous population of West Papua, using mass migration from Java.
    She told Andrew West her investigation in West Papua had a familiar and frightening echo.   

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    2) Minister Luhut Pandjaitan visits Fiji
    3) INDONESIA will provide up to $USD5million in assistance,  to help in Fiji’s rehabilitation after Tropical Cyclone Winston.
    4) Eliminate the “Smoke” ULMWP
    5) Activists call on wise  men to solve historic human  rights abuses 
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    1) Indonesia to firm up Fiji ties
    5:28 pm on 30 March 2016
    A senior Indonesian government minister is due in Fiji today in what is seen as a further step by Jakarta to strengthen ties with Melanesian countries.
    During his visit, Luhut Pandjaitan, who is the Co-ordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security, is reportedly expected to give five million US dollars in assistance to South Pacific countries.
    A senior Indonesian official has told the BBC that the ministerial visit is to suppress the United Liberation Movement for West Papua diplomatically.
    An academic says the visit is the political language to show other countries that they cannot interfere in Indonesia's internal affairs, and that the issue of Papua is final.
    The Movement has observer status at the Melanesian Spearhead Group, which is currently chaired by the Solomon Islands prime minister, Manasseh Sogavare.
    It has also established offices in Vanuatu and Solomon Islands, whose prime minister backs the Papuans' right to self-determination.
    ———————————————————————————————————
    2) Minister Luhut Pandjaitan visits Fiji
    Kamis, 31 Maret 2016 01:29 WIB

    Suva, Fiji (ANTARA News) - Indonesias Coordinating Minister for Political, Security and Legal Affairs Luhut Pandjaitan and the accompanying delegation arrived at Suva, the capital of Fiji, on Wednesday for a day long visit to the island state in the South Pacific region to improve bilateral relations.

    He was accompanied by Djauhari Oratmangun, former ambassador to Russia who is now a special ministerial staff for strategic issues.

    Upon arrival at Nausori International airport in Suva after flying for more than six hours from Jayapura, Minister Luhut Panjaitan immediately went to Hotel Grand Pacific and Holiday Inn to spend the night.

    Minister Pandjaitan is scheduled to pay a courtesy call on Prime Minister J.V. Bainimarama, flanked by Djauhari Oratmangun, the Indonesian ambassador to Fiji, Papuas deputy governor and Maluku governor.

    Minister Pandjaitan and delegation would meet with Fijis Minister of Agricultural, Rural, Maritime Affairs and National Disaster Management.

    During the meeting with the minister, Pandjaitan will be flanked by North Maluku governor, deputy head of National Disaster Mitigation Agency, head of East Nusa Tenggara tourism service and first assistant of the West Papua provincial administration.

    As part of the agenda, the head of the National Election Commission, Husni Kamil Manik, would sign a memorandum of understanding on election management with his counterpart from the Fiji Elections Office.

    Later, the coordinating minister and delegation will be hosted for a lunch by Fijis Foreign Minister Ratu Inoke Kubuabola. After the lunch, he and the delegation will leave Suva for Papua New Guinea.

    Regarding South Pacific countries position on Indonesias foreign policy, Minister Luhut Pandjaitan said in Jayapura, Papua, on Monday that Indonesia is committed to strengthening its bilateral relations with these countries.

    "We wish for better relations with countries in the South Pacific," he said.

    Luhut Pandjaitan said the visit of the Indonesian delegation to Fiji was aimed at extending financial assistance worth US$5 million to help the victims of the Winston typhoon that hit in February.

    "I also bring with me a letter from President Joko Widodo for Prime Minister J.V. Bainimarama," he said.

    Besides extending financial funds, Indonesia also sent US$3 million worth of goods and a company of army engineers to help in the reconstruction efforts after the category 5 typhoon, he said. 

    Reporting by Rahmad Nasution
    T.R013 (H-YH/S012)
    EDITED BY INE
    (T.SYS/B/KR-BSR/S012) 
    —————————————————————————————————-
    3) INDONESIA will provide up to $USD5million in assistance,  to help in Fiji’s rehabilitation after Tropical Cyclone Winston.
    Islands Business (Facebook)
    INDONESIA will provide up to $USD5million in assistance, including a contingent of army engineers to help in Fiji's rehabilitation after Tropical Cyclone Winston.
    The deal is expected to be cemented later this week during a visit to Fiji by Indonesia's Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister General Luhut Pandjaitan.
    On this visit Pandjiatan - accompanied by two provincial governors of Papua - will meet Fiji's Prime Minister, Rear Admiral Frank Bainimarama.
    While Pandjiatan denied any links between his visit and the rising anti-Indonesian sentiment within Melanesian Spearhead Group countries, he will carry a letter from President Joko Widodo to Bainimarama.
    His visit comes on the back of a visit by MSG Chair and Solomon Islands PM Mannaseh Sogovare to Fiji.
    Sogovare has promised to pursue West Papua's inclusion in the United Nations Decoloniosation List - the C24.
    PNG and Fiji are the two MSG countries which have consistently failed to speak out against Indonesian human rights abuses in the territory it annexed in 1961.


    ————————————————————————————————

    A google translate of article in Jubi. Be-aware google translate can be a bit erratic.
    Original bahasa link at

    4) Eliminate the “Smoke” ULMWP
    By Neles Tebay





    Installation nameplate ULMWP office in Wamena by one announcer ULMWP, Edison Waromi - Jubi / Victor Mambor



    VARIOUS media at home and abroad reported the events official opening of West Papua Liberation Movement Unity (The United Liberation Movement for West Papua / ULMWP), 15/2, 2016 in Wamena, Jayawijaya, Papua. With this inauguration, ULMWP now has offices in three places: Country Vanuatu, Solomon Islands State, and Wamena.

    Government reaction
    The initial reaction of the government is denying the news about the inauguration of the office ULMWP in Wamena. Head of Information Regional Military Command (Kodam) XVII / Cenderawasih, Kol. Inf. Teguh Praise Prog, denied that the Free Papua Movement (OPM) has established an Office ULMWP in Wamena (Rmol.co, 17/2). Cenderawasih announced that there was no evidence of OPM established an office in Wamena (Coverage 6.Com, 17/2). President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo, through a spokesman, Johan Budi, also denied reports about the opening of the Office ULMWP in Wamena (Tabloidjubi.com, 17/2).


     
    Though denied by the government, it turns out that the police and the Local Government Jayawijaya managed to lose office signboard ULMWP in Wamena (CNNindonesia.com, 16/2). Nameplate reduction action itself, indirectly, have justified their report on the establishment and inauguration of the office ULMWP.

    According to the Papua Police Chief, Inspector General of Police Paul Waterpauw (SuluhPapua.com, 18/2), ULMWP prohibited conduct its activities in Indonesia, including in Papua. The prohibition was made because ULMWP activities contrary to positive law and statutory provisions in force in Indonesia. The presence ULMWP organization, according Waterpauw, contrary to the integrity of the Republic.

    For the government, any attempt establishment ULMWP office, either by whoever had done and where any place in the Republic of Indonesia, is seen as an act of violation of Indonesian law. For that reason, the establishment of the Office of ULMWP in Wamena categorized as an offense, the police lowered the office signboard.

    Subsequently, the police are looking for parties who violate the law. Police have called a number of people as witnesses, among others, Father John Jonga, Engelbertus Surabut, and Bonny Mulait. That said, Markus Haluk and Edison Waromi will be called the police.

    According Jayawijaya Police Chief Adjunct Senior Commissioner Ronny Semmy Thaba, the suspects will be charged with Article 106 of makar (KBR, 3/3). Police categorize establishment ULMWP Office as an act of treason. Thus, the suspects will be brought to court and imprisoned, as was the case over the years, for 10 to 20 years. The application of Article treason, of course, will increase the number of Political Prisoners (Prisoners) Papua.

    Discover the fire
    The question that needs to be struggled by all the parties is: How can I make ULMWP office was not established for ever, both at home and abroad? To answer this question, we must have a proper understanding of the office opening ULMWP. Note that ULMWP is a political umbrella organization of all the resistance groups Papuans who associate themselves with OPM striving for independence of West Papua. So, ULMWP, by nature, a political organization, not a criminal group. Establishment of the Office of ULMWP a political activity. If ULMWP office establishment in question, then the problem must be viewed from a political rather than a legal standpoint. Carrying cases ULMWP establishment into law, means that efforts are being made to criminalize politics. Obviously, this means never managed to solve the problem of Papua, due to political problems require political solutions.

    The application of Article treason would not touch, let alone resolve, the political issues underlying the establishment of the office ULMWP in Wamena. The founders ULMWP office, or everyone who attended the inauguration of the office they may be imprisoned, tortured and even killed. But all of these measures will not solve the political problems that encourage the formation of ULMWP, including the establishment of its representative office.

    Activity ULMWP establishment and inauguration of the office in Wamena can be likened like a puff of smoke. Smoke rises because there is a fire. The smoke indicates fire. The smoke would be driven out, driven and aligned to be missing. But all efforts to evict the smoke will be futile, since the smoke would reappear, which produce smoke during the fire has not been extinguished. Thus, the inauguration of the office can ULMWP westernized like a puff of smoke that was indicating that there was a fire smoldering. The decline in office signboard ULMWP, imprisonment or even murder suspects against the suspects, can be carried out but only to eliminate the time the smoke ULMWP. Because, as long as political issues into the smoldering fire ULMWP undiscovered and off, during which the smoke will be billowing ULMWP back. We will continue to be presented news about the opening of the Office ULMWP in various places, both at home and abroad.

    The most appropriate way to stop the smoke ULMWP, once and for all, is the path of dialogue. So in fact the government respond to the activities this establishment ULMWP Office to engage in dialogue with ULMWP. Government and OPM represented by ULMWP must meet to identify fire or problems which led to the establishment ULMWP office, and jointly seek a political solution that is acceptable to both parties. Once the root of the problem solved, forever there will be no establishment ULMWP offices both at home and abroad. Then the inauguration events ULMWP office in Wamena can be used as an excuse for the police to encourage President Jokowi in order to start a dialogue with ULMWP. (*)

    The author is a lecturer at the Fajar Timur School of Philosophy and the coordinator of the Papua Peace Network in Abepura.

    ————————————————————

    5) Activists call on wise  men to solve historic human  rights abuses -
    Liza Yosephine, thejakartapost.com, Jakarta | National | Wed, March 30 2016, 1:27 PM - 

    Activists are urging the government to form an independent commission made up of civilian "wise men" to push for a legal settlement of Indonesia's historic human rights abuses to bring justice to the victims and their families.

    The commission's members must be representatives of the public and not public officials from institutions involved in the violations, the human rights advocacy group Setara Institute suggested.

    Setara and family members of victims of past human rights abuses held a closed door meeting with the Presidential Advisory Board (Wantimpres) to convey to it the proposed formation of a Presidential Commission on the Disclosure of Truth and the Recuperation of Victims on Tuesday.

    "It's impossible for governmental elements or officials to be part of this commission because in this case the state itself is subject to law that holds it responsible for historic human rights abuses, even though the current government is not the actual offender," Setara's deputy chairman, Bonar Tigor Naipospos said.

    Together the activists met with Wantimpres chairwoman Sri Adiningsih and member Sidarto Dabusubroto to create a commission consisting of well-informed civilians, and not government officials, in the pursuit of a judicial resolution of seven main cases of violations.

    The commission's duties would be to validate data that has been investigated by the National Commission of Human Rights (Komnas HAM) to see what can be taken to court and handled judicially, or alternatively, for the government to issue a formal apology by way of reconciliation.

    The ad-hoc committee would be under President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo with the authority to produce binding presidential decrees, Bonar said.

    Jokowi has repeatedly reiterated his commitment to settling historic rights abuses that have been declared gross human rights violations by Komnas HAM.

    The formation of the commission comes in response to a long-delayed bill on truth and reconciliation that is before the House of Representatives, which is apparently an alternative way in case government officials fail to find a better solution for all.

    The selection of the committee members itself would be the prerogative of the President, Bonar said, adding that the backgrounds of the members would be important.

    Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan said that the government aimed to settle all human rights violations cases by early May through reconciliation only and not through judicial processes because there was a lack of evidence. Such a deadline was "absurd", Bonar said.
    Setara chairman Hendardi also derided Luhut's statement, calling it overly ambitious, hasty and unrealistic, as well as unacceptable to the families of the victims who sought for justice.

    "There would be no reconciliation without the revelation of the truth," Hendardi said.
    Human rights groups and families of the victims are pushing for the resolution of the cases judicially as stipulated in the 2000 law on human rights courts.

    Hendardi admitted that with the case of the 1965 communist purge, a judicial settlement would be difficult because of a scarcity of proof and witnesses.

    However, he underlined other newer cases must be resolved at court with transparent legal procedures.
    Maria Katarina Sumarsih, member of the the Victims Solidarity Network for Justice (JSKK), said her community, along with the Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (Kontras), recently held its 436th Kamisan (a silent protest held every Thursday) across from the State Palace.

    The protesters will continue to do so until the government takes concrete steps.

    Maria, whose son Bernardus Realino Norma Irawan died in the First Semanggi tragedy in 1998, said the solving of the Semanggi cases could set a precedent as a step forward toward a positive future when the government would be proactive in addressing issues to clear the history.

    The unresolved cases consist of a 1989 massacre in Talangsari, Lampung, the forced disappearance of anti-Soeharto activists in 1997 and 1998, the 1998 Trisakti University shootings, the Semanggi I and Semanggi II student shootings in 1998 and 1999, the mysterious killings of alleged criminals in the 1980s, the communist purges of 1965 and various abuses that took place in Wasior and Wamena in Papua in 2001 and 2003, respectively. (+) 
    ——————————————

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    2) Five Minutes with with Ash Brennan, Producer/Director of Punks For West Papua - 
    3) Melanesian Leaders are Well Informed of Papua Situation : ULMWP
    4) Luhut Says Military Operation is Last Resort
    5) Punks for WP-WE ARE MOVING STORIES
    ———————————————————————-

    1) Pacific churches warn about Indonesian conditional aid
    4:24 pm today
    The Pacific Conference of Churches says donors and foreign governments must treat victims of disaster with dignity and not attach conditions to relief efforts.
    The call coincides with this week's visit to Fiji of Indonesia's Co-ordinating Minister for Political Affairs, Law and Security, Luhut Binsar Padjaitan.
    Mr Padjaitain is reportedly to give Fiji an assistance package worth up to 5 million US dollars and a contingent of engineers for the country's rehabilitation efforts in the wake of the devastation caused by Cyclone Winston last month.
    PCC General Secretary, Reverend Francois Pihaatae, said Indonesia's offer should be welcomed but noted that Padjaitan's visit had glaring political overtones.
    He noted the minister had been "extremely vocal against groups seeking self-determination in Papua" and had publicly called for West Papuan activists to be removed from the country.

    Diplomatic overdrive

    Back in Jakarta, a senior government official told Indonesian media earlier this week that the ministerial visit was to suppress regional support for the United Liberation Movement for West Papua.
    As the ULMWP was recently granted observer status at the Melanesian Spearhead Group, Jakarta has increased its diplomatic overtures to the region.
    But Reverend Pihaatae said that any bilateral talks between Indonesia and Fiji on the issue of West Papua should not be influenced by assistance to cyclone victims.

    "We call on all donors - including NGOs - not to attach conditions to their aid and to refrain from providing assistance along with a discreet message to support a political cause," he said.


    Paula Makabori of the United Liberation Movement for West Papua looks at Fiji's prime minister Frank Bainimarama who has forged closer ties with Indonesia on behalf of his people. Photo: RNZ / Johnny Blades


    The Reverend said that New Zealand and Australia - long seen as opponents of Fiji's prime minister Frank Bainimarama - had rushed to Fiji's aid following the cyclone, setting no pre-conditions for humanitarian assistance.
    "By accepting conditional aid," he said, "regional governments do their people a great disservice."



    Self-determination talk off limits

    As part of his Pacific trip, Luhut Binsar Padjaitan is also to visit Papua New Guinea where he is due to arrive in Port Moresby tomorrow.
    PNG's Foreign Minister Rimbink Pato indicated that talk of West Papuan self-determination remains off limits.
    Mr Pato said that at the political level, PNG's relationship with Indonesia was at its peak, and people-to-people engagements are growing.
    "For example, Papua New Guinea is, I think, the only country in the Pacific Islands that Indonesia has given free visas to. Every citizen from PNG can enter Indonesia without applying for visas," he enthused. "This is even better than visas on arrival."
    But Rimbink Pato insisted his government considered West Papua an integral part of Indonesia and was committed to not discussing West Papuan self-determination.
    "So we're not interested in entertaining the issue of self-determination, because that's never an issue for us, and that's never a concern for us.


    Mr Pato said however that PNG would continue to discuss concerns over human rights issues in Indonesia's Papua region, pursuant to a resolution by the Pacific islands Forum last year at its leaders summit in Port Moresby.

    Mr Padjaitain last week announced government intentions to have a number of human rights abuses in West Papua probed.
    However, earlier this month the provincial government of Papua province urged the minister, a former military leader, to resist from making provocative statements that might cause anxiety in the region, after he signalled a hardline security forces response to a recent mulitple killing.
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    2) Five Minutes with with Ash Brennan, Producer/Director of Punks For West Papua - 

    Punks For West Papua deals with the ongoing West Papuan genocide. Can you give a brief rundown of the conflict for those who might not be aware of the tragedy? - 

    After WWII, Indonesia and Papua, or the Dutch East Indies as it was known, was still a colony of the Netherlands. Indonesia officially claimed independence in 1949 after declaring war on the Dutch colonisers. President Sukarno had his eyes firmly set on West Papua as it’s full of resources, including the world’s largest gold and silver deposits. Over the last 50 years, it is estimated that over half a million West Papuans have been murdered. Waving a West Papuan flag, or any act of nationalism, is punishable by 15 years’ prison. 
     The genocide is ongoing, as the Indonesian government forbids journalists or human aid workers into West Papua.    

    The documentary focuses on Jody Bartolo and his attempts to raise money and awareness for the Free West Papua cause. How did you become involved with him? 

    Neil Kellington, bass player for the Diggers With Attitude, is a long-time friend of mine. It was Neil that first contacted me regarding the first Punks for West Papua (P4WP) gig that the band had set up. He just asked me if I would be interested in shooting DWA perform at P4WP in June at the Town & Country Hotel in St Peters. Two weeks after that phone call, Jody called me to say Free West Papua campaign leader Benny Wenda was in town and offered us an interview to promo the P4WP gigs. Within that 30-minute interview, my life was turned on its head. Benny told us things that I didn’t think were possible in this part of the world. That one gig at the Town & Country Hotel grew to 51 bands in seven cities around the country. 
     In 2016, P4WP is now a global event.  

     Given its content, was the documentary difficult to make? 

    I never thought about making a documentary until after I spoke to Benny Wenda. Even then I had no real plan. I have worked in television for over 25 years and am quite handy with a camera and edit software, as well as producing. So I figured it would just come together. The main issue I had was footage from West Papua. I obviously wasn’t going there, but I needed the rights for footage to tell my story. West Papua media and local West Papuan filmmakers helped me out with some great footage and it saved the day. Despite what most people may think, I did go easy on using footage that was too horrific. The pictures and video coming out of the place are just horrific.   

    Do you remain optimistic about the future of the West Papuan cause? 

    Indigenous West Papuans make up less than 50 per cent of the population. The Indonesian government opened up all the land for Indonesian citizens as free settlers. Even if another ‘act of free choice’ was held, the population on numbers would ensure Indonesia would continue its rule.   

     Indonesia is an associate member of the Melanesian Spearhead Group. As an associate member, it has the power to vote down West Papua’s observer status, so their voices will never be heard. Thirdly, for West Papua to have any chance of self-determination, it needs the support of Australia. Unfortunately, successive governments on both sides of politics have publicly supported Indonesia’s sovereignty over West Papua. Punks For West Papua (dir. Ash Brennan) shows at Wayward Brewing Co. on Wednesday April 6; and is also available to rent at punks4westpapua.com and screening nationally. - 


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    3) Melanesian Leaders are Well Informed of Papua Situation : ULMWP
    31 March 2016
    Jayapura, Jubi – The United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) was coy about Luhut Panjaitan’s plan to visit two Melanesian Spearhead Group country members, Fiji and Papua New Guinea.
    “Only these two countries can take Indonesia,” said ULMWP Secretary General Oktavinus Mote to Jubi on Tuesday (29/3/2016) by phone.
    Because, according to him, PNG and Fiji are in trouble right now. Fiji was recently hit by Winston hurricane while PNG is facing an economic turmoil.
    Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Human Rights Affairs Luhut Panjaitan said his visit to Fiji and PNG has no connection with the Papua issue in MSG forum or a strengthening the position of Indonesia in regional organization in the Pacific region.
    “It is because of a movement to make Papua seems not part of Indonesia, such as in Melanesia. But East Nusa Tenggara, Ambon, those are anthropologically part of Melanesia as well. So, there is no reason about it,” said the minister.
    However he acknowledged the Indonesian relationship with the countries in Pacific is less warm. “Why did it happen? We might be too busy with other business,” he added.
    But the ULMWP Secretary General Octovianus Mote said the Melanesian leaders are among the world leaders who know the reality in Papua. Their credibility as leaders has been tested in the past, including when they decided to recognize and accept the ULMWP to resume as family member of Melanesian and South Pacific’s big family.
    “At the moment, West Papua nation and people are not alone in their struggle anymore. Papua has become a member of Melanesian family since 2013 and strengthened by recognition as observer in Honiara last year,” continued Mote.
    He added, the Indonesian effort to affect the Melanesian leaders would not succeed.
    In the MSG Summit held in last June 2016, Fiji and PNG are the countries that supported the acceptance of Indonesia becoming the Associate Member in MSG. two other countries, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu didn’t give their supports. Both countries along with Kanak and Socialist National Liberation Front (FLNKS) gave supports to ULMWP to become a member as observer in MSG. (Victor Mambor/rom)

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    4) Luhut Says Military Operation is Last Resort

    31 March 2016
    Jayapura, Jubi – Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan said a military operation was a last resort for to overcome the insurgency in Papua.
    “We can have military operation at any time, but it is a last option,” said the minister in Jayapura on Tuesday (29/3/2016).
    Besides, he added, President Joko Widodo was unlikrly to approve the option, because he wanted the government to take a welfare approach. “President isn’t comfortable with the option. He emphasized the welfare approach is still the best option,” he said.
    The welfare approach, said the minister, is considered the most effective because people were prosperous the security would be more improved. Therefore, he appealed to the opposite parties to come down and join the government to build Papua.
    “To those in the highland who are still making trouble, please come down, let us build Papua together. Because the president wanted a welfare approach to resolve the problem in Papua,” he said.
    In addition, he also refused perceptions of unsecured Papua spreading in some countries. Therefore he asked to both religious and customary leaders to call the opposite parties to come down to build Papua.
    “There are rumors abroad saying Papua is a savage region. I think it’s not true. We want telling them if they come safely they would go home safely as well. Therefore we also never want to affiliate with military alliance,” he said. (Alexander Loen/rom)
    ——————————————————-
    5) Punks for WP-WE ARE MOVING STORIES
    photos etc.


    1. Congratulations! Why did you make this film?
    I made this film to bring Australia’s attention to the ongoing genocide occurring in West Papua at the hands of the Indonesian Military. The Australian Media ignores West Papua as Journalists are forbidden to enter. The Punks of Australia have to stood up for the West Papuans, and I think it’s a great story.
    2. Why do you think the situation in West Papua resonated so much for the punk groups?
    At its heart, Punk rock stands up for the downtrodden and always asks questions of the government. Most punks are very politically and socially aware about the situation in West Papua and feel very strongly about it. And Punks just love to play for a cause, and more importantly play for nothing.
    3. As an eyewitness Hugh Lunn discusses the staged Act of Free Choice in the 3 minute clip on We are moving stories. Why did you decide to include his testimony?
    Hugh Lunn is a multi award winning Journalist. It was an honour for me to have Hugh Lunn in my film. He was there at the time of the act of free choice in 1969 and saw first hand the brutality of the Indonesian Military. Hugh has great credibility and someone to whom we should listen.
    4. You also made the short film 26 January. Australia Day. Do you see any similarities between the plight of the West Papuans and Australian Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders?
    Both situations are about the indigenous peoples being moved off their traditional lands by force for corporate interests. I especially feel strongly about the Australian indigenous. They have been here for over 60,000 years. We should be celebrating and respecting their culture.
    5. What type of feedback have you received so far about the film?
    The feedback so far has been great. Most people say the same thing: ‘how come we don’t know about this?’ and want to do something straight away. The film has picked up a couple of awards in the US as well so it looks like the message is getting out there. We have also received these endorsements:
    "Music has always played a crucial role in the struggle for Independence in West Papua. All Papuans are musicians & it is part of life to sing. The Punks for West Papua movement is fantastic! The documentary is fantastic. It’s helping to bring our voices to a whole new audience. It’s helping the world to wake up." 
    Benny Wenda, Leader Free West Papua Campaign
    "Punks for West Papua captures the whole 50-year sorry story of West Papua in a very brave and poignant way. George Orwell would have said it "sees things as they are". Which is what he always tried to do himself."
    Hugh Lunn – 3 time Walkley Award Winner
    "This is the most significant film to come out on West Papua in the last decade. Not since Mark Worth’s 'Land of the Morning Star' have we seen a doco that tells it like 'Punks for West Papua'. It’s to their credit that ‘crazy’, tatooed anti social punk rockers lead the charge to prick our consciences in the West, along with Papuan activists prepared to risk death and cruel torture by speaking out in the film. 'Punks for West Papua’ makes naked Indonesia’s policy of slow genocide over the last 50 years of occupation. This film which reveals what is really happening to our nearest northern neighbor."
    David Bradbury – 5 time AFI award winner, 2 time Academy award nominee




    6. Has the feedback surprised or challenged your point of view?
    People’s reactions haven’t really surprised me as it affected me the same way when I was doing my research.
    7. What are you looking to achieve by having your film more visible on this platform?
    I would like as many people around the world to see this film, to spread awareness of the genocide in West Papua. Awareness is the most important thing. As Voters, we can pressure or governments to do something about it.
    8. Who do you need to come on board (producers, sales agents, buyers, distributors, film festival directors, journalists) to amplify this film’s message and audience? 
    Yes, obviously all of the above would be very helpful in getting the message out there.
    9. What type of impact would you like this film to have?
    Since the films release in January, it has inspired punk bands from around the world to create an international Punks for West Papua in June this year. That alone is an amazing achievement for the film. I hope it can inspire more organisations and more genres of music to do the same thing.
    10. Lastly, what’s a key question that will help spark a debate about this issue and film?
    Why is Australia so afraid of Indonesia?

    ———————————

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    2) Indonesian minister hands over aid to Fijian prime minister
    3) Luhut Says Pacific Trip Does Not Reflect Foreign Minister’s Diplomatic Failure

    4) Central Government to Spare Special Budget for Border Area

    5) Papua will continue to  use none voting system:  KPU -
    6) Papua bans alcohol consumption
    7) RI mulls appointing envoy  to South Pacific

    ———————————————————————————

    1) Indonesia to be consistently present in S. Pacific: Senior Minister
    Kamis, 31 Maret 2016 22:34 WIB 

    Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Indonesia will be consistently present in the South Pacific by sending ministers to 16 countries in the region, Indonesias Coordinating Minister for Political, Security and Legal Affairs Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan said here Thursday.

    "To Prime Minister Josaia Bainimarama and foreign minister Ratu Inoke Kubuabola I have conveyed that we will be consistently present in the region," he said during his visit to Fiji.

    During the visit he had met with Prime Minister Bainimarama, Minister of Agriculture, Resettlement, Maritime and Disaster Mitigation Affairs Ina Seriaritu and had a lunch with minister Kubuabola, Luhut said in a written statement received here this evening.

    At the meetings he reiterated Indonesias commitment to help and cooperate with Fiji, in the economic, fishery, agricultural, cultural and military fields.

    The cooperation in the military field includes disaster mitigation management, such as training to deal with disaster and in peacekeeping affairs.

    "I hope the ministers of agriculture and trade will soon come to Indonesia to realize the cooperation. This is important to show Indonesia's seriousness," he said.

    Regarding the Melanesian Spearhead Group issue, Luhut said that it had been touched upon in the meeting with Foreign Minister Kubuabola.

    Minister Kubuabola revealed the wish of the government of Fiji to propose upgrading the status of Indonesia at the MSG from an associate member to a full member to strengthen 
    Indonesias position in the group of Melanesian countries, he said.

    He would report it to President Joko Widodo and discuss it with Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi on his arrival home, Luhut said in response to it.

    After completing his agenda in Fiji, minister Luhut left Suva Thursday evening for Port Moresby for a two-day official visit to Papua New Guinea.

    (Reporting by Syaiful Hakim/Uu.H-YH/INE/KR-BSR/F001)
    —————————————————————

    2) Indonesian minister hands over aid to Fijian prime minister

    Kamis, 31 Maret 2016 20:25 WIB | 424 Views
    Suva, Fiji (ANTARA News) - Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan here, Thursday, symbolically handed over aid worth US$5 million to 
    Fijian Prime Minister J.V. Bainimarama to help rebuild the country after Cyclone Winston.

    Pandjaitan also expressed his sympathy and condolences to the Fijian government and people over the disaster that devastated the South Pacific country last February.

    Bainimarama held a closed-door meeting with Pandjaitan, who was accompanied by Indonesian Ambassador to Fiji Gary R.M. Jusuf, the vice governor of Papua, and the governor of Maluku.

    Later, the Indonesian delegation held a meeting with Fijian Minister for Agriculture, Rural, and Maritime Development and National Disaster Management Inia Seruiratu. 

    Indonesia offered cooperation to Fiji in the areas of agriculture, disaster mitigation, and fishery. 

    The minister remarked that Indonesia will deploy engineer troops to help reconstruct Queen Victoria School in Lawaki.

    "In early May, the TNIs (Indonesian Defense Forces) engineer troops will arrive. We will also send 100 units of hand tractors to help develop agriculture here," Pandjaitan noted.

    Minister Seruiratu hailed the aid and cooperation offered by Indonesia.

    He said Indonesia was a key player in the Asian and Pacific region, and the countrys success in disaster management and mitigation had received international recognition.

    However, he hoped that the two countries would intensify cooperation in other crucial fields such as education, agriculture, economy, and food security. 

    As part of the delegations agenda, Indonesian Chairman of the General Election Commission Husni Kamil Manik signed a memorandum of understanding on cooperation 
    for the management of general elections with his Fijian counterpart. 

    Ambassador Jusuf stated that Fiji was a good friend of Indonesia in the South Pacific region and will always remember its assistance when the nation was isolated following a peaceful coup in 2006.

    Indonesia helped Fiji transform itself from a military regime into a democratic nation and offered technical cooperation in the fisheries sector in areas such as seaweed cultivation, the envoy added.

    After concluding the trip to Fiji, the Indonesian delegation headed on a working visit to Papua New Guinea.(*)


    ——————————————————————————
    3) Luhut Says Pacific Trip Does Not Reflect Foreign Minister’s Diplomatic Failure

    31 March 2016
    Jayapura, Jubi – Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Luhut B. Panjaitan brushed aside suggestions that his visit to Fiji and Papua New Guinea reflected failure by Minister of Foreign Affairs Retno Marsudi to the prevent the Papua issue from taking center stage in the Pacific region.
    “No, it’s not true. I always consult with her (Retno),” said Luhut in Jayapura this week, answering reporter.
    “Because of I’ve already been here (Jayapura), so I just go on (to Fiji), because there was a hurricane and so on,” Luhut said.
    He said Retno is the person behind his mission to the two Melanesian countries. “I just spoke with her on the phone. She arranged all of this,” he said.
    However the minister acknowledged that Indonesian relationship with the countries in the Pacific, in particular Melanesian countries, is less warm. “Why did it happen? It might because we are too busy with other things. Now, there was hurricane, so we send an engineer army troupe to help them (Fiji) to reconstruct the houses damaged by hurricane,” he said.
    He also added the Indonesian President Joko Widodo provides donation of US$5 million to Fiji to rebuild their infrastructures after beating by Winston hurricane last month. (Victor Mambor/rom)
    ——————————————————————————-

    4) Central Government to Spare Special Budget for Border Area

    31 March 2016
    Jayapura, Jubi – Papua Governor Lukas Enembe asked the Central Government to spare a special budget to manage the border area since Papua is considered the veranda of the Republic of Indonesia in the Pacific Sea area.
    “Inclusive authority is needed to manage the border area. I expect all government’s programs at national and regional levels could be integrated and well managed in both coordination and implementation,” said Lukas Enembe when laying the first stone of Skouw Integrated Cross Border Station (PLBN) in Jayapura on Tuesday (29/3/2016).
    Rebuilding PLBN is to show that the border area is the Indonesian window and yard as well as gateway for the Southern Pacific region.
    ‘Skouw region is part of the Republic of Indonesia which lie alongside Papua New Guinea and directly face the Pacific region. It spreads along 860 kilometers from the northern to southern area marking by 52 benchmarking stones built in two countries,” he said.
    Enembe explained that each year about 30 thousands legal and illegal travelers crossed the border. In fact, since 1965, both countries have involved in negotiation to build the infrastructure for the border area, and now the President Widodo has included the PLBN construction in program development since last year.
    However, Enembe admitted the current service is not yet optimal, particularly the cross border service. As the result, it raises many illegal activities, such as illegal fishing, fuel and firearm smuggling as well as drug trafficking.
    “It is very important to build a cross border station for that reason, particularly to consider the tenure customary rights in Papua and Papua New Guinea,” he said.
    He added until now there is no road access to cross the border from the northern to the southern region. Therefore Governor Enembe asked the Ministry of Public Works building a road access from Pegunungan Bintang Regency to Jayapura.
    “We also need the support of the Central Government to open access to direct flight fro Papua New Guinea to enable access and good delivery. Earlier we have sent letter to airline company to open the flight service,” he said. (Alexander Loen/rom)
    ————————————————————————
    5) Papua will continue to  use none voting system:  KPU -
    Nethy Dharma Somba, thejakartapost.com, Jayapura, Papua | Archipelago | Thu, March 31 2016, 8:22 PM - 
    The noken voting system will be still used in regional elections in Papua, as the social custom of the Papuan people, which has been passed across generations, has many good values, an election official has said.
    General Elections Commission (KPU) chairman Husni Kamil Manik said that as a gauge of public opinion in Papuan culture, noken could not be totally removed from either regional head elections or general elections. 
    “Several values in the noken system are in line with general election principles, but some other values are not yet in accordance with election principles, so we need to alter how they are implemented,” he said in Jayapura on Tuesday.
    Giving an example, Kamil said the noken system adopted Indonesia’s widespread “musyawarah untuk mufakat” (deliberation for consensus) style of decision-making. In a general election under the noken system, there is also a campaign period, during which a candidate conveys his or her vision and mission to all constituents. The constituents are also be given time to analyze the candidate and deliberate until consensus is reached, he added. 
    However, Kamil further said, that the noken system did not protect voters’ right to confidentiality, which was not in line with Indonesia’s principle of direct, public and free elections. Under the noken system, the choices of voters can be seen by all people present at a voting station. 
    “This could potentially trigger political resentment because a candidate will be fully aware who chose him or her and who did not support him or her,” said Kamil.
    Under such conditions, the KPU chairman said, the Provincial General Elections Commission (KPUD) must alter the practice so that it maintained voter confidentiality.
    “Until now, [voting takes place via] a noken [traditional Papuan bag] with the name of a chosen candidate attached to it. As the result, everybody knows ‘who chooses who’,” said Kamil.
    “There should be a new method. We can still use a noken but we put it in a booth so that the confidentiality of our choice is maintained. The noken will be put into a ballot box before they are counted,” he said.
    To adjust the noken system so that it complies with Indonesia’s direct, public and free election principles, Kamil said, all KPUD officials in areas still using the noken system must start a dialogue with the public about the positives and negatives of the noken voting system. 
    “One thing that they must tell the public is that it is important for a voter to be able to cast his or her vote directly. Although there has been an agreement that they must choose a certain candidate, they should still be allowed to participate in the voting process directly, and not be represented by others as has happened under the noken system until now” said Kamil.
    KPUD Papua chairman Adam Arisoi said 11 regencies and municipalities would participate in regional elections in Papua in 2017. Of the total, six regencies, namely Dogiyai, Nduga, Lanny Jaya, Puncak, Puncak Jaya and Tolikara, would still use the noken system.
    “However, not all polling stations in the six regencies will apply the noken system. Only some of them will use it and the remainder will allow for vote-casting in line with nationally-adopted direct, public and free election principles,” said Adam.
    He further said that in the 2017 regional elections, tribal chiefs would no longer represent their tribes in casting votes. All voters will cast their votes directly.
    KPUD Puncak Jaya chairman Jennifer Darling Tabuni said the noken system would be used at only eight locations. “Voters in other areas of the regency will cast their vote in line with the direct, public and free election principles,” he said. (ebf)
    ————————————————
    6) Papua bans alcohol consumption

    Nethy Dharma Somba, thejakartapost.com, Jayapura | Archipelago | Thu, March 31 2016, 8:06 PM - 
    Alcohol distribution and production are officially prohibited in Papua province starting Thursday to save Papuans from the disastrous effects of alcohol consumption, the Papua governor has said.
    The prohibition came into effect with the signing of an integrity pact on Thursday. The document was signed by Governor Lukas Enembe, regents and mayors in Papua, the Papua Provincial Council (DPRD), Papua Police, military command and district court chiefs during a coordinating meeting.
    The integrity pact would support the existing 2013 Provincial Regulations on alcohol prohibition to prevent alcohol distribution in Indonesia's easternmost province, Enembe said.
    Several regional leaders expressed their support of the integrity pact, saying that alcohol had only brought issues such as domestic violence to Papua.
    "Alcohol destroys Papuans. It could be the cause of their extinction," Enembe said on Thursday.
    The integrity pact consists of several points, including prohibition of the production, distribution and sale of alcohol, cooperation with relevant offices in monitoring alcohol prohibition and implementation the 2013 Provincial Regulations.
    Fien Yarangga, an activist from group Papuan Women (Perempuan Papua), applauded the provincial administration’s move, saying that it showed that local officials cared about the issues.
    "Women are most often the victims of alcohol consumption. They fall victim to domestic violence triggered by alcohol," Fien said.
    The group is currently assisting three victims of alcohol-related violence. One of them is the wife of a Jayapura public official who was tortured by her drunk husband. The two other women were raped by drunk men.
    The group urged the provincial administration to promote the regulation and integrity pact among the public to raise awareness.
    According to Papua Police data, 86 people have died, 264 have been heavily injured and 839 suffered light injuries since 2013 in alcohol-related cases. (rin)
    ————————————————————————————-
    7) RI mulls appointing envoy  to South Pacific
    Tama Salim, The Jakarta Post, Suva | World | Thu, March 31 2016, 8:11 AM - 
    Indonesia is looking to strengthen its diplomatic ties with South Pacific countries by appointing a special envoy to the region.


    Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Luhut Pandjaitan on Wednesday said he would propose assigning an official from the Foreign Ministry to engage with the easterly neighbors and underscore Indonesia’s commitment to resolving complicated issues surrounding Papua.

    Luhut said Jakarta’s eastward gaze was part of its wider efforts to counter the separatist narrative that had thus far prevented the government from developing Indonesia’s easternmost province.

    “I will propose this to the President [Joko “Jokowi” Widodo] and the Foreign Minister [Retno LP Marsudi]. It is important that there is an envoy who can deliver our message to the Pacific island countries,” he told The Jakarta Post aboard an Indonesian Air Force aircraft en route to New Caledonia.

    Luhut is in the region to consolidate support from member states of the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG), which have struggled to balance their growing ties with Jakarta with ongoing support for regional grassroot movements dedicated to protecting the rights of indigenous people of Papua and West Papua during decades of separatism.

    The MSG is a sub-regional grouping in the Pacific, comprising Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Fiji and New Caledonia. Indonesia is an associate member.

    Luhut said it was crucial that the government start to “aggressively” inform the international community on its many undertakings in Papua, with support from MSG members a crucial factor of success.

    To this end, Luhut invited a number of Papuan regional heads and representatives of other provinces with a large Melanesian presence — Maluku, North Maluku, East Nusa Tenggara and West Papua.

    “We have to thoroughly explain what’s being done — and we’re doing a lot,” he said.

    According to him, the government is supporting Papua on a number of fronts, starting with increased regional funds, a renewed focus on health and education initiatives, the promise to resolve past human rights abuses and plans for more infrastructure and logistics projects.

    Kicking off a three-day tour to countries in the region, Luhut will be in Fiji for bilateral meetings with Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama, Foreign Minister Ratu Inoke Kubuabola, and Agriculture, Maritime Development and Disaster Mitigation Minister Inia Seruiratu.

    Meanwhile Luhut’s advisor Djauhari Oratmangun said the visit aimed to strengthen Indonesian ties with Fiji, consolidating the Pacific Island country’s continued support of Indonesia in the MSG forum.

    Fiji, along with Papua New Guinea, has supported Indonesia’s role in the sub-regional forum as the country with the largest population of Melanesians.

    Djauhari said the trip also had humanitarian goals, with Indonesia providing Fiji with US$5 million in disaster relief as well as a container of supplies from the Indonesian Army’s engineering directorate.

    Meanwhile, General Elections Commission (KPU) chairman Husni Kamil Manik is set to sign a memorandum of understanding with the Fijian government on the transfer of knowledge on election organizing.

    After Fiji, Luhut and his entourage plan to visit Papua New Guinea before returning to Jakarta. - 

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    Wayward Brewery Co have been great supporters of Punks for West Papua. 
    On Wednesday 6th April, they are opening their fine brewery for a screening. $10 entry.

    Punks For West Papua The Doco. 
    (dir. Ash Brennan) 

    at Wayward Brewing Co. 

    on Wednesday April 6

    Open from 6

    Doco showing  at 7pm
    Wayward Brewing Company Unit 1-3 Gehrig Lane, Annandale





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    2) Indonesia may appoint special envoy to South Pacific
    ———————————————————————————————————-
    1) West Papuans object to Indonesian envoy idea
    41 minutes ago
    The United Liberation Movement for West Papua has objected to a move by Indonesia to commission an envoy to the Pacific on behalf of its Melanesian population.
    Indonesia's Co-ordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Luhut Pandjaitan said he would propose assigning a Foreign Ministry official to engage with Pacific neighbours and advance Indonesia's commitment to resolving complicated issues surrounding Papua.
    Minister Pandjaitan made the call this week on his Pacific regional tour which included visits to Fiji, New Caledonia and Papua New Guinea.
    His tour was described by Indonesian officials as a bid to suppress regional support for the Liberation Movement which was recently granted observer status at the Melanesian Spearhead Group.

    Advancing Papuan interests

    Explaining the need for an envoy, Pandjaitan said it was crucial that Jakarta start to "aggressively" inform the international community on its many undertakings in Papua.
    However, the Liberation Movement's ambassador for Oceania and the Pacific Islands region, Amatus Douw, pointed out that he already serves the role as envoy for Papuan interests in the Pacific.
    The Australia-based diplomat warned that Indonesia's envoy plan was about expanding its colonialist agenda and nothing to do with representing the interests of Papuans.

    The United Liberation Movement for West Papua's Pacific ambassador Amatus Douw (third from left) and secretary-general Octo Mote (second from right) talk to New Zealand MPs. Photo: RNZI / Johnny Blades




    The Liberation Movement was established in 2014 by a unification process involving all the major West Papuan political representative groups.
    Its admission into the MSG fold was an acknowledgement by the MSG full members (PNG, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and New Caledonia's indigenous Kanak movement) of West Papuan rights to regional representation.
    Mr Douw said Indonesia should not interfere with the representations of Papuan interests in Melanesia and the wider Pacific region.
    "We never interfere over Asian affairs in your region," said Mr Douw. "Indonesia is not real Pacific or Melanesian states."

    Indonesia opens wallet

    Indonesia, which claims to have eleven million Melanesians across five provinces, was also granted associate status at the MSG last year.
    Since then, Jakarta has shifted into diplomatic overdrive in the Pacific to subdue support for the Liberation movement, particularly where governments of independent Melanesian states are concerned.
    According to Mr Pandjaitan, the Joko Widodo-led government is supporting Papua on a number of fronts, starting with increased regional funds, a renewed focus on health and education initiatives, the promise to resolve past human rights abuses and plans for more infrastructure and logistics projects.
    While in Suva this week, Minister Pandjaitan handed a cheque for five million US dollars to Fiji's prime minister Frank Bainimarama ostensibly for assistance in rehabilitation efforts following the devastation caused in the island nation in February by Cyclone Winston.


    Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama receives a 5 million US dollar cheque from Indonesia's Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Luhut Pandjaitan. Photo: Fiji Sun



    However the Fiji-based Pacific Conference of Churches warned that donors and foreign governments must not attach conditions to relief efforts, amidst concern that Indonesia is using financial inducements to ensure silence among other governments regarding Papua.
    PCC General Secretary, Reverend Francois Pihaatae, said Minister Padjaitan had been "extremely vocal against groups seeking self-determination in Papua" and had publicly called for West Papuan activists to be removed from the country.
    This comes after signs as early as 2014 that Fiji authorities were doing the bidding of Indonesia on the West Papua question.
    "By accepting conditional aid," Reverend Pihaatae said, "regional governments do their people a great disservice."
    This sentiment was echoed by Amatus Douw who said that the support for West Papuan rights and self-determination efforts was very strong in Fiji.
    "I strongly oppose Indonesia's use of natural disaster momentum to promote (its) political stand on West Papua's Independence movement in the Pacific region," he said.
    "If Indonesia really provide humanitarian aid, you must do with your good and pure heart without any dirty political motivation."
    —————————————————————-

    2) Indonesia may appoint special envoy to South Pacific

     April 1 2016

    By Tama Salim in Suva
    Indonesia is looking to strengthen its diplomatic ties with South Pacific countries by appointing a special envoy to the region with a portfolio including West Papua.
    Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Luhut Pandjaitan has said he would propose assigning an official from the Foreign Ministry to engage with the country’s easterly neighbors and underscore Indonesia’s commitment to resolving complicated issues surrounding Papua.
    Luhut said Jakarta’s eastward gaze was part of its wider efforts to counter the self-determination narrative that had thus far prevented the government from developing Indonesia’s easternmost province.
    “I will propose this to the President [Joko ‘Jokowi’ Widodo] and the Foreign Minister [Retno LP Marsudi]. It is important that there is an envoy who can deliver our message to the Pacific island countries,” he told The Jakarta Post on board an Indonesian Air Force aircraft en route to New Caledonia.
    Luhut is in the region to consolidate support from member states of the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG), which have struggled to balance their growing ties with Jakarta with ongoing support for regional grassroots movements dedicated to protecting the rights of indigenous people of Papua and West Papua during decades of pro-independence agitation.
    The MSG is a sub-regional grouping in the Pacific, comprising Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Fiji and New Caledonia. Indonesia is an associate member.
    Luhut said it was crucial that the government start to “aggressively” inform the international community on its many undertakings in Papua, with support from MSG members a crucial factor of success.
    Papuan heads invited
    To this end, Luhut invited a number of Papuan regional heads and representatives of other provinces with a large Melanesian presence ­ Maluku, North Maluku, East Nusa Tenggara and West Papua.
    “We have to thoroughly explain what’s being done ­ and we’re doing a lot,” he said.
    According to him, the government is supporting Papua on a number of fronts, starting with increased regional funds, a renewed focus on health and education initiatives, the promise to resolve past human rights abuses and plans for more infrastructure and logistics projects.
    Kicking off a three-day tour to countries in the region, Luhut will be in Fiji for bilateral meetings with Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama, Foreign Minister Ratu Inoke Kubuabola, and Agriculture, Maritime Development and Disaster Mitigation Minister Inia Seruiratu.
    Meanwhile Luhut’s advisor Djauhari Oratmangun said the visit aimed to strengthen Indonesian ties with Fiji, consolidating the Pacific Island country’s continued support of Indonesia in the MSG forum.
    Fiji, along with Papua New Guinea, has supported Indonesia’s role in the sub-regional forum as the country with the largest population of Melanesians.
    Humanitarian goals
    Djauhari said the trip also had humanitarian goals, with Indonesia providing Fiji with US$5 million in disaster relief as well as a container of supplies from the Indonesian Army’s engineering directorate.
    Meanwhile, General Elections Commission (KPU) chairman Husni Kamil Manik is set to sign a memorandum of understanding with the Fijian government on the transfer of knowledge on election organising.
    After Fiji, Luhut and his entourage plan to visit Papua New Guinea before returning to Jakarta.
    Tama Salim reports for The Jakarta Post.

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    2) RI, PNG agree to forge bilateral ties

    3) President Jokowi to visit Merauke

    ———————————————————————————


    http://www.antaranews.com/en/news/103967/png-supports-indonesia-to-become-member-of-melanesian-spearhead-group

    1) PNG supports Indonesia to become member of Melanesian spearhead group

    Jumat, 1 April 2016 23:33 WIB | 532 Views
    Port Moresby, PNG (ANTARA News)- The Government of Papua New Guinea (PNG) has supported Indonesia to get the status of associative member of the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) and later become a full member in due course of time.

    Indonesias application to become a full MSG member was being processed, and thereafter, the way to obtain the full membership status would be opened, PNG Foreign and Immigration Minister Rimbink Pato informed Rahmad Nasution of ANTARA, here, Friday, following a bilateral meeting with the Indonesian delegation led by Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan.

    PNG will host the 21st Summit of the MSG in 2017. During its 20th Summit held in Honiara in the Solomon Islands on June 26, 2015, Indonesia had obtained the associative member status.

    At the bilateral meeting, Pato stated that the constructive and open talks covered various cooperation opportunities including in the fields of economy, investment, trade, and energy, particularly LNG, and flights connecting the two neighboring countries. 

    They also discussed cooperation between the two nations police and military, especially to guard the border areas.

    PNG, which will host an APEC Summit in 2018, is eager to take a cue from Indonesia on ways to organize a major international meeting.

    According to Pato, the two countries have signed 11 memoranda of understanding and three agreements to strengthen bilateral partnership based on mutual respect.

    "We will also learn from Indonesias rich experiences in democracy, and we (PNG and Indonesia) will move together and work in tandem," noted Pato, who was accompanied by PNG Trade Minister Richard Mare and National Development Planning Minister Charles Abe.  

    In the meantime, Head of the Indonesian Delegation Minister Pandjaitan remarked that the two delegations also discussed cooperation in immigration affairs, trade, and the development of the palm oil industry.

    "The Indonesian trade ministrys delegation and business mission will visit PNG in late April this year. Our relations are becoming closer," Pandjaitan affirmed.

    At the invitation of PNG Prime Minister Peter ONeill, President Joko Widodo visited Port Moresby on May 11-12, 2015, to strengthen bilateral cooperation in economic, trade, investment, and infrastructure construction fields.

    The two leaders also agreed to increase the value of bilateral trade beyond trading activities in the border areas that reaches US$4.5 million per year.(*)

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    http://www.antaranews.com/en/news/103964/ri-png-agree-to-forge-bilateral-ties

    2) RI, PNG agree to forge bilateral ties

    Jumat, 1 April 2016 23:07 WIB | 356 Views
    Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Indonesia and Papua New Guinea have agreed to forge relations between the two countries.

    The two countries reached an agreement to this effect during a meeting between Indonesian Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs, Luhut Binsar Panjaitan, and several Papua New Guinean ministers on Friday to look into the possibility of cooperation between the two countries.

    Papua New Guinea Minister of Foreign Affairs and Immigration Kimbink Pato, National Planning Minister Charles Abel and Trade and Industry Minister Richard Maru greeted the Indonesian minister and his entourage upon arrival in the country.

    In a press statement released on Friday, Kimbink Pato said he was pleased to receive the high-level Indonesian delegation.

    "The model of cooperation we have discussed covers many fields ranging from culture and trade to military cooperation. We also discussed a plan to cooperate in liquefied natural gas (LNG), palm oil, and intelligence. Basically, this cooperation is aimed at narrowing any differences between the two countries," Pato said.

    To accelerate the realization of cooperation projects, Indonesia will send an economic delegation, led by the trade minister, to Papua New Guinea next month, Luhut said.

    At the meeting with Papua New Guinean ministers, Indonesia also offered assistance to the neighboring country which will host an Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting in 2018.(*)
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    http://www.antaranews.com/en/news/103968/president-jokowi-to-visit-merauke

    3) President Jokowi to visit Merauke

    Sabtu, 2 April 2016 01:31 WIB | 255 Views

    Jayapura (ANTARA News) - President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) is scheduled to leave for Merauke, Papua, on Sunday afternoon for a two-day visit to the eastern region.

    The chief of the XVII Cenderawasih Military Command overseeing the region, Major General Hinsa Siburian, said here that President Jokow would inaugurate the newly renovated Mopah terminal in Merauke upon his arrival.

    On Monday, President Jokowi is scheduled to visit the Indonesia-Papua New Guinea border post in Sota and inspect the Trans-Papua and border roads.

    After visiting the border in the southern part of Papua, President Jokowi will proceed to Manokwari, West Papua, Major General Hinsa Siburian said.

    While in West Papua, the President will inaugurate the port in Wasior and later visit Sorong where he will inaugurate a micro-hydro power plant in Maybrat, he said.

    Asked about which cabinet ministers would be accompanying the President, Siburian said he did not know about it.

    (Reporting by Evarukdijati/T.E006/Uu.H-YH/INE/KR-BSR/B003)
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    2) At Yowari Public Hospital, Ambulance Turns into Shuttle Car
    3) Papua Governor: My Staffers Not Performing Well
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    1) Papua Officially Enforces Regulation on Liquor Restrictions
    1 April 2016
    Jayapura, Jubi – A regulation on the prohibition of production, distribution and sale of liquor came into force in Papua Province following the signing of an Integrity Pact on Alcohol Drink Prohibition by the governor and regional heads communication forum (Forkopimda), the major and regents as well as the regional heads council.
    The signing of the pact took place during the breaks of Papua Regional Heads Meeting held at Sasana Krida, Papua Governor’s Office, Dok II Jayapura on Wednesday (30/3/2016).
    The Chairman of Papua Legislative Council Yunus Wonda in the speech said the prohibition of the production, distribution and sale of liquor in Papua has officially applied starting today.
    “The first regulation established in 2004 was only covered on the probation. Then in 2009, we invited the Papua Police to make a presentation on the percentage of death cases of Papuan youths as the result of consuming the alcohol drinks that caused the traffic accident, torture and domestic violence,” said Wonda.
    And today, said Wonda, all regents and Forkopimda members must have commitment to sign the pact. It must be launched first, and would be evaluated because the evaluator has not yet been set up.
    Meanwhile, Papua Governor Lukas Enembe said what was done today was a legacy for Papua next generation since it was written in the history and God witnessed it. “Today we declare our commitment to ban the alcohol drinks and yet to the drugs,” said Enembe.
    With the signing of the pact, said Enembe, the regents and major agreed to restrain the liquor. Its distribution is not allowed in the land of Papua, because for the people of Papua it is forbidden.
    “To all Papuans, if not us who else will. Every year many people died because of alcohol, many domestic violence were occurred,” he said.
    He added, in the future the Provincial Government would form a task unit to guard and control the circulation of liquors in Papua at seaports and airports.
    “We say ‘it’s over’ to liquor. The Regents and major to please prepare the task unit with the police to restrict the circulation of liquors in Papua,” he said.
    Separately, the Chairman of Punjak Jaya Regional Legislative Council Nesco Wonda said though he wasn’t read the whole content of regulation, but basically he agreed about it because it’s not the new issue. Moreover, Papuans always have bad stigma from the outsiders.
    “We are always stigmatized by the outsiders that Papuans are drunkards, this stigma that we want trying to stop,” Nesco Wonda said.
    Especially in Puncak Jaya Regency, he said, the circulation of liquors is very limited, if so those who supplied and distributed are the security personnel. “So liquors are not much of problem, but there are merely bunches of drink made from fruits,” he said. (Alexander Loen/rom)
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    2) At Yowari Public Hospital, Ambulance Turns into Shuttle Car
    1 April 2016
    Sentani, Jubi – An ambulance that is supposed to carry patients has been converted into a shuttle car for health workers at Yowari Public Hospital.
    The Director of Yowari Public Hospital Michael Demeteuw said it was done because a bus procured in 2006 to transport hospital employyes is broken.
    “Also, I wonder because sometimes ago when there was a distribution of operational office vehicles at Gunung Merah (Regent’s Office), as the largest hospital, we are skipped, though the proposal has been submitted since last year,” he told Jubi at his office on Wednesday (30/3/2016).
    He said currently what is required now at Yowari Public Hospital is the operational vehicles consisting of 8 cars and 8 motorbikes to accommodate its activities and services to public.
    “Two operational cars for staffs shuttle, 2 ambulance cars, 4 cars for each service department heads, and 8 motorbikes for each section,” he said,
    During this current year he took his personal vehicle to the office. “I can still tolerate this with expectation the local government could take what we have proposed earlier. Because the hospital is not belong to us who work here,” he said.
    The hospital staff Jakobus Maryen lamented this situation because the ambulance car shouldn’t be used as staffs shuttle car. “Are they (the government) sleeping?” he questioned. (Engel Wally/rom)
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    3) Papua Governor: My Staffers Not Performing Well
    2 April 2016  
    Jayapura, Jubi – Papua Governor Lukas Enembe said many of his staffers are not performing well. Many programs have been on hold while others have become personal projects.
    “I have seen all of this, many plans were made only to get my money. It must be regulated,” said Enembe during a presentation at Papua Regional Heads Meeting in Jayapura on Wednesday (30/3/2016).
    According to him, many echelon III and IV are becoming kings and change the working program into personal project to bring some money, though all is merely a nonsense.

    “Latter the governor is the one to be accused, so be careful in working. Obtaining appreciation from businessmen is better that creating unreliable projects,” he said.
    During the time, said Enembe, he never received a report on the running work programs from his entire staffs, but always took the governor’s name when out of office or after working hours.
    “It is already outrage, I will evaluate all,” he said.
    He said so far he found difficulty to change his working cabinet due to lack of resources. “I want to change but I don’t have a choice, so I just stand with the existing. So do no tricks,” he said.
    Thus, he asked to Papua Regional Secretary Hery Dosinaen as the highest bureaucracy leader at provincial level to immediately manage the second, third and fourth echelon officials who are not well performed but involved into personal project.
    “Mr. Secretary, we have to manage our officials because many are not good. It’s a problem,” said the governor to Papua Regional Secretary Heri Dosinaen. (Alexander Loen/rom)
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    2) Historic political meeting about West Papua self-determination to take place in UK
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    1) Marijuana Plantation Found in Indonesia-PNG Border Area
    By : Jakarta Globe | on 3:22 PM April 02, 2016
    Jakarta. Members of an Indonesian military border security task force along the country's border with Papua New Guinea have discovered another marijuana plantation in Kalilapar Village, Keerom, Papua.
    The plantation was found just 1.4 kilometers from the Kalimao Post, with at least 38 plants standing up to two and a half meters tall.
    Military official Col. Czi Berlin H announced the discovery on Saturday (02/04) in Jakarta, saying it is the third time the unit has found plantations in the area.
    “Personnel in the Kalimao Post, led by Post Commander First Lt. Inf. Buyung, assisted by an Intel Officer Capt. Inf. Mulyo Hartono, are developing the case to find the owner, as well as searching for other plantations,” Berlin said.
    Officers in the border areas have instructed to patrol the area and conduct sweeps to collect information for investigations.
    “It is proven to be effective. The task force has discovered marijuana fields, secured rifles and 30 rounds of sharp ammunitions from the sweeping,” Berlin added.
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    2) Historic political meeting about West Papua self-determination to take place in UK
    APRIL 3, 2016

    On May 3rd 2016 at Westminster, London one of the most significant events in West Papua’s history will be taking place.The International Parliamentarians for West Papua, members of the United Liberation Movement for West Papua, legal & human rights experts, and International Government representatives will be coming together and announcing a call for an Internationally Supervised Vote for West Papua.
    The meeting will be held on May 3rd as this marks almost exactly 53 years to the day that the Indonesian government first took control of West Papua on 1st May 1963 (known to West Papuans as the Day of Terror).
    West Papuan self-determination was violated in 1969 through the so called “Act of Free Choice”, known to West Papuans as the Act of NO Choice. This was supposed to be an Independence Referendum for all West Papuans but was nothing but a sham. The people of West Papua are now calling for a new Independence referendum in an Internationally Supervised Vote.
    We want YOU to join , and help us to make sure the world hears us.
    This month we are calling on all of our supporters across the globe to join in our April actions and to build momentum for the May 3rd call for an Internationally Supervised Vote for West Papua.
    And here’s how:
    1) Help us make #LetWestPapuaVote go viral!
    Display this hashtag through photos or video messages, add your name and location and messages of support and post this to your Facebook, Twitter and Instagram page. Encourage your friends and family to do the same. Send it to people in the public eye, through your university or to your favourite bands. Send it to us at the Free West Papua Campaign. Send it everywhere! Let’s get the world speaking about West Papua together.




    – Download and print the SIGN IN THE LINK HERE
    – Take a photo of yourself holding THE SIGN YOU HAVE JUST PRINTED; include your name and location at the bottom (e.g. Mary, London, UK). 3
    – Post your photo to twitter, Instagram or Facebook. Be sure to include the hashtags #LetWestPapuaVote #FreeWestPapua
    – After you post, send your photo to your local Free West Papua group & the central Free West Papua Campaign.
    ADD A VIDEO MESSAGE
    In your video message please include your name, where you are from, and the statement “I join the call for an International supervised vote for West Papua”
    Feel free to expand & edit and be creative!
     
    2) Let’s get people in the public eye involved!
    Ask those in the public spotlight that you think would be good for the campaign, to show their support through public statements & social media. Get in touch with celebrities, community leaders, chiefs, musicians, lawyers and academics, local politicians. Tell them about what is happening in West Papua and invite them to join us. You could send them the letter below or tweet them?
    Be respectful at all times, but let’s help spread the information and see if we can get some well-known faces to send in video messages of support and join our #LetWestPapuaVote. 
     
    3) Continuing the diplomatic push for International Parliamentarians for West Papua.                                              It’s people power that pressures our governments in to action, and the governments will be forced in to action for West Papua if we keep on the pressure. Please ask your friends and family and local support network to do the same.
    So far we have 87 IPWP members worldwide. There are many more that have voiced their support. Can you help us to get their signatures to join IPWP?
    We nearly have 250,000 supporters on Facebook! West Papua is being recognised in the diplomatic hallways of the world and this is all down to YOU! So please continue to stand beside us and together we will FREE WEST PAPUA!

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    2) Freeport Divestment Price Yet to be Set
    3) Seven Tribes Empowerment Team Ready to Propose CEO Candidate
    4) Minister’s Visit Has No Meaning, Says Yaung
    5) Jokowi seen empowering Indonesian military
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    1) Special Autonomy Stuck due to Jakarta Interventions
    4 April 2016



    The Special Autonomy Law has not solved the social gap between Papua and other regions in Indonesia – Jubi

    Jayapura, Jubi – After almost 16 years, the Special Autonomy Law has not solved the social gap between Papua and other regions in Indonesia.
    The Special Autonomy Law is also a materialization of the highest recognition from the Indonesian Government towards Papuan people, especially the indigenous people.
    It is expected to provide opportunities and broaden the participation of indigenous Papuans in all areas of development. However, in reality, many Papuans believed it has not achieved its purpose. But Papua Governor Lukas Enembe wanted to retain it.
    The Second Secretary of Papua Customary Council, John NR Gobai said the authority of Special Autonomy Law wasn’t running optimal because of overlapping rules or double standard.
    “We are really different with Aceh, for instance in the use of full authority of Special Autonomy. In Papua, it is not firmed, and so many interventions from the Central Government to Papua,” he told Jubi in Abepura on Saturday (2/4/2016).
    According to Gobai who also the Paniai Regional Customary Council Chief, that each Perdasus (Special Regional Regulation) or Perdasi (Provincial Regulation) always need to be consulted to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, therefore speaking on Papua Special Autonomy is clearly to be cut by the Central Government.
    He said the Central Government much believes on ‘spies’ in Papua than the Regional Government. He gave example on the conflict of mining permits that are still overlapping between the authority of Papua Governor and the regents.
    “It is happening because of the appliance of two regulations, namely the Law of Regional Government and Special Autonomy Law in Papua Province,” he said.
    Meanwhile, the Indonesian councilor of Papua representative the Rev. Charles Simaremare firmly said in line with the rejection of Special Autonomy by Papuan people, and Papua provincial civil servants was happened because of the implementation of Papua Special Autonomy has not been run properly as the authority has not been fully given to the Provincial Government as the administrator. As its reference is not clear, he added, many Special Regional Regulations are certainly not running yet.
    “Because if talking about Papua Special Autonomy, it should involve a huge authority and the important role of people is also need to be improved to prosperity,” he said. (Abeth You/rom)
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    MONDAY, 04 APRIL, 2016 | 14:58 WIB
    2) Freeport Divestment Price Yet to be Set

    TEMPO.COJakarta-Director General of Mineral and Coal for Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry Bambang Gatot said the divestment price of PT Freeport Indonesia has yet to be decided. To date, the government is still reviewing the purchase price of a 10.64 percent stake.
    “We are still discussing the price for the government to make a verdict. We only need to decide on it’s price,” Bambang said Monday, April 4, 2016.
     
    Bambang said that the government has yet to summon Freeport as the review is not yet completed. The government is targeting that divestment of Freeport McMoRan Inc’s subsidiary to be completed this year. “If it fails to be completed this year, we will proceed to the next year.”
     
    Earlier, PT Freeport Indonesia has proposed for divestment of 10.64 percent stake. Based on the procedure, the divestment was first offered to the central government; should the central government did not buy the shares within 90 days from the offering, the shares will be offered to regional government.
     
    If the regional government did not buy the shares within 60 days, Freeport shares will be offered to state-owened enterprises (SOEs) or region-owned enterprises (BUMD). If SOEs or BUMD are not interested, divestment process will be repeated the following year.
     
    Meanwhile, PT Aneka Tambang, PT Inalum, PT Timah and PT Bukit Asam are reported to be interested in buying the shares. They have also prepared a scheme to take over the shares and formed a special purpose vehicle. The SPV set up by the SOEs has claimed its readiness with an equity of US$510 million.
    ANGELA ANJAR SAWITRI


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    3) Seven Tribes Empowerment Team Ready to Propose CEO Candidate
    4 April 2016
    Jayapura, Jubi – Seven tribes empowerment team of seven tribes the land tenure owners in Freeport Indonesia mining area is now preparing their candidate for the position of the Executive Director of PT. Freeport Indonesia.
    Team member Yulianus Nawipa said the team has set up a candidate, but he still kept it on secret.
    “But the point is the team is deserved for that position. We have program and transparent system. We have designed it,” said Nawipa to Jubi by phone on Saturday (2/4/2016).

    According to him, Papua Governor Lukas Enembe might propose a candidate to the Indonesian Government and Freeport in Jakarta. But he thought the Empowerment Team is the most feasible to appoint a candidate since it already had a clear working program.
    “We have designed a system for the State’s purpose, the interest of both company and Papuan government and Papuan people in general as well,” he said.
    He said the team was formed in order to eliminating the underdevelopment, discrimination in employees training and recruitment as well as the other things.
    Meanwhile the Secretary General of seven tribes empowerment team Manase Degei said the team was formed due to the willingness of team members to get involved in responsibility.
    “We are more about to take care of the management. It is not about tenure rights but our rights and the rights of employees from seven tribes. We want the employees of seven tribes origin at PT. Freeport could be protected,” said Degei. (Arjuna Pademme/rom)
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    4) Minister’s Visit Has No Meaning, Says Yaung
    4 April 2016
    Jayapura, Jubi – The purpose of Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Luhut Panjaitan’s visit to Papua is to encourage an audit on the use of Papua Special Autonomy funds and address human rights violations in Papua.
    But an observer on international law from the University of Cenderawasih Marinus Yaung described the minister’s precence among the government’s officials in Papua as powerless.
    “In front of us (last time in Jakarta) he said he would come to Papua at the end of March 2016 for two reasons. First, to conduct an audit on the use of Special Autonomy Law as well as to give lessons to the corruptors and thieves over the Papuan people’s money,” Marinus Yaung told Jubi in Jayapura on Saturday (2/4/2016).
    It is, said the minister, to ensure that those thieves and corruptors are no longer existed in Papua.  While his second purpose, said Yaung, is to resolve the severe human rights violations that were occurred in the land of Papua.
    “And these issues are already raised. But what I asked to him is to resolve the Paniai Bloody Case, which earlier promised by the police to be settled in three months but it has not been settled yet after a year,” he said.
    According to him, before the sever human rights violations in Papua are settled, the minister should apologize to the victims and the families, especially to Papuan women whose children shot dead on 08 December 2014. However, he was disappointed since the minister never said a word to apologize as Jokowi’s representative.
    “I also regretted that he didn’t apology. I see this as a nonsense, a promise that never been fulfilled,” he said.
    He also questioned why was it difficult for Indonesia to apologize to Papuan people for the state’s crime against Papuans.
    About the minister’s visit to Pacific, he said it is no more that a vacation.
    The Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Human Rights Affairs earlier promised to resolve the human rights violations in Papua in this year. In particular, the Paniai case, the minister believed it could be settled within this year as well.
    “Yes, I guarantee,” he said when being asked whether he could guarantee the settlement of Paniai Bloody Case could reveal the perpetrator. According to Luhut, there are sixteen human rights violations in Papua that have been identified by the government. Among these cases, there are including Wasior case, Wamena case and Paniai case. (Abeth You/rom)
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    5) Jokowi seen empowering Indonesian military


    Francis Chan Indonesia Bureau Chief

    During the Jan 14 terror attack in Jakarta, troops from the Indonesian military, Tentara Nasional Indonesia (TNI), watched from the sidelines as the police successfully resolved the crisis.
    During the New Order era of President Suharto from 1965 to 1998, the military - then known as Angkatan Bersenjata Republik Indonesia (Abri) - would have led from the front, experts say. That was a time when the military was a key player not just in national defence and internal security but also in socio-political affairs, they add.
    Reforms implemented after the fall of Suharto in 1998 saw Abri relinquishing its role as a major force in national development under the dwifungsi, or "dual function", mandate, which granted the military its power over civil and political affairs.

    Gone too were the seats reserved for Abri representatives in Parliament as the country, which suffered decades of authoritarian rule, aspired to a more liberal democracy.
    Abri was renamed the TNI and, on paper, restricted to an external defence role, while the police force, once part of Abri, has been carved out to oversee law and order at home. This includes taking the lead in counter-terrorism as Indonesia grapples with the rising threat from domestic militants, including thousands who are loyal to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).
    IMPLICIT BARGAIN
    Jokowi seems to have struck an implicit bargain with the TNI. In exchange for unconditional loyalty and support for his broader political agenda, the President will push for improvements in military personnel welfare, modernisation of TNI equipment, maintenance of the TNI's separation from the Defence Ministry and retention of an ex-officio Cabinet post for the TNI commander.
    JAKARTA-BASED INSTITUTE FOR POLICY ANALYSIS OF CONFLICT
    Political observers say the TNI has been muzzled by presidents elected after Suharto, most careful not to evoke memories of the military's repressive regime during the Indonesian strongman's era.
    However, the military seems to have found a second wind under President Joko Widodo, as well as new friends in certain quarters of Parliament, they add.
    "Jokowi seems to have struck an implicit bargain with the TNI," said the Jakarta-based Institute for Policy Analysis of Conflict (Ipac), using Mr Joko's nickname.
    "In exchange for unconditional loyalty and support for his broader political agenda, the President will push for improvements in military personnel welfare, modernisation of TNI equipment, maintenance of the TNI's separation from the Defence Ministry and retention of an ex-officio Cabinet post for the TNI commander."
    Just days after the release of the Ipac report last month, some lawmakers called for the TNI to play a wider role beyond national defence.
    TNI troops have already undertaken non-military missions since Mr Joko became President in 2014. The army, for instance, had thousands of boots on the ground fighting forest fires during the haze crisis last year. Most remain in fire-prone areas to prevent a repeat of the environmental disaster.
    Mr Joko has also sent soldiers to support government projects. These include helping to stabilise staple food prices in rural areas, facilitating land acquisitions, tackling graft at ports and building infrastructure across the country.
    Just last week, army engineers completed the initial phase of a 1.5 trillion rupiah project comprising a 4,325km trans-Papua highway in the easternmost region.
    Mr Joko is also open to expanding the internal security role of the military, which is already heavily involved in the anti-terror offensive in Poso, Central Sulawesi, where the TNI and police are mounting a joint operation against the East Indonesia Mujahidin extremist group.
    Despite its growing list of deployments, the TNI may yet push for a larger role in internal security. This, as "its warm relationship with President Jokowi deepens and its credibility with the public soars", said Ipac.
    According to the report, the factors driving the TNI's push for power include a conviction that Indonesia is facing dangers only the TNI can address; distrust of civilian politicians; resentment of the police; and a sense of opportunity in the current political situation.
    However, it remains to be seen if the TNI led by General Gatot Nurmantyo, an army general appointed by Mr Joko, harbours any ambition for the military to play a greater political role in Indonesia.
    Still, some observers say that allowing the TNI to expand its influence beyond its role in national defence has placed the military in its strongest position since the New Order. They also fear it may reverse the democratisation process in one of the world's largest democracies.
    "Almost 18 years after Indonesian democracy was re-established, Indonesia still needs to institute safeguards that will ensure that there are clearly understood limits to the military expansion now under way," say Ipac researchers.
    Others, such as Institute for Policy Research and Advocacy researcher Wahyudi Djafar, say the move may also distract the TNI from its own internal reforms to modernise.
    "The idea of involving the TNI in stabilising food prices could be in violation of law... (and) also compromise efforts to make the TNI a professional force," he adds.
    What is worth keeping a closer eye on is the seemingly deliberate move by the current administration to synergise the TNI and the police in roles beyond security.
    Perhaps there may be a hint in Mr Joko's calling on the military and police to be "guardians of diversity within the framework of the Unitary Republic of Indonesia".
    Associate Professor Terence Lee from the National University of Singapore does not foresee the TNI reclaiming its position of old as a dominant force in politics.
    "Firstly, there is legislation that prevents that from happening and doing so would mean overturning those laws," says Prof Lee, referring to Indonesia's State Defence Act of 2002 and TNI Law enacted in 2004.
    The second is that dwifungsi is no longer part of the military's doctrine, says the author of Defect Or Defend, which examines military responses to popular protests in authoritarian regimes in Asia. "Dwifungsi is no longer taught in any of its training or educational institutions and there is no organisational ethos that justifies it."
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    2) President visits three provinces in Eastern Indonesia

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    1) Pato: PNG can learn much from Indonesia
    00:21 am GMT+12, 04/04/2016, Papua New Guinea

    Papua New Guinea can learn a lot from Indonesia, the largest democratic nation in the world, Foreign Affairs Minister Rimbink Pato says.
      “Indonesia is a global player and is PNG’s friend and we have got a lot to learn from them,” he said.  
     “That why this high-level discussion and communication is taking place and some of these things that we can
     pick up from each other’s experiences, like conducting simultaneous  national and council elections and move forward together.   
     Pats made his observation after meeting with Indonesian coordinator Minister for Political, Law Enforcement and Security 
    Affairs Luhut Binsar Panjaitan at the Parliament on Friday.  
     “Indonesia and PNG are close and have many mutual agreements (11 memorandum of understanding and three treaties) in
     relations starting from the treaty of mutual and friendship.
     “So, there are many issues of cooperation which will enable us to enjoy prosperity, security benefits,” he said.  
     Pats said Indonesia would share its experience of hosting the 2013 Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in view of
     PNG’s preparation to host the 2018 APEC summit.  
     “We are pleased to have a high level important delegation from Indonesia to PNG and our Trade Minister (Richard Maru) 
    will be going to Indonesia to pursue some of the matters that we have discussed on people to people relationship, trade and 
    investment and discussion on some of our projects along the border,” he said.
     Pato said they had discussions to develop liquefied natural gas, oil fields and rural electrification projects along the PNG-Indonesian border.  
     “Also, we discussed about development of the oil palm industry, military and police cooperation intelligence sharing and education exchanges,” he said.
    SOURCE: THE NATIONAL/PACNEWS

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    http://www.antaranews.com/en/news/103998/president-visits-three-provinces-in-eastern-indonesia

    2) President visits three provinces in Eastern Indonesia

    Senin, 4 April 2016 15:58 WIB | 571 Views

    Jakarta (ANTARA News) - President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) and First Lady Iriana left for Ambon, Maluku, here, Monday, to start a three-day working visit to the provinces of Maluku, West Papua, and North Maluku located in eastern Indonesia.

    The president and his entourage departed from the Halim Perdanakusuma Air Force Base, eastern Jakarta, Monday, at around 11:30 a.m. local time by the Indonesia-I presidential aircraft.

    Jokowi has reiterated several times that the national development program must focus on Indonesia as a whole and not merely Java.

    "I have told all ministers that the development must begin from the border areas to the center. It is not Java-centric. It must be Indonesia-centric," the head of state emphasized.

    President Jokowi is scheduled to inaugurate several infrastructure projects.

    The president will officiate the Red and White Bridge in Ambon, Maluku, and Wasior Harbor in West Papua.

    In Morotai, North Maluku, Jokowi will symbolically inaugurate new and renewable energy projects located in North Maluku, Maluku, Papua, and West Papua. 

    Symbolic inauguration of five seaports will be held in Tobelo Harbor in North Halmahera District, North Maluku. 

    The four other harbors are Galela, Tutu Kembong, Wonreli, and Teor Island. 

    The new seaports are expected to support the governments sea toll road program aimed at boosting the countrys inter-island connectivity and logistics supplies to remote areas.

    "Sea toll is not a road. This means there are deep sea ports and harbors in Sumatra, Java, Kalimantan, Sulawesi, and Papua. Moreover, there are big ships operating every day, so (goods/commodity) prices in all islands will be the same. It is a sense of justice," Jokowi had stated in 2014.

    President Jokowi and the First Lady will return to Jakarta on Wednesday, (April 6).

    The Red and White Bridge, to be inaugurated by the president in Ambon on April 6, is the longest in eastern Indonesia and measures 1,140 meters in length. The bridge will reduce the travel time to and from Pattimura airport, Central Maluku District. 

    ***2***

    H016 (F001/INE) 

    EDITED BY INE

    0 0

    Australia West Papua Association (Sydney)


     PO Box 28, Spit Junction, NSW 2088





             Summary of events in West Papua for March (–5 April) 2016



    The Region
    The Solomon Islands diplomat in Geneva, Barrett Salato, raised concerns about human rights abuses in West Papua at the United Nations Human Rights Council (39th Meeting, 31st Regular Session Human Rights Council, 15 March). He told the Council that the human rights violations in West Papua needed urgent attention by the world community and the Solomon Islands remains concerned by arbitrary arrests, summary executions, tortures, ill treatments and limitations of freedom of expression committed by Indonesian security forces. He encouraged Indonesia to establish a dialogue with West Papuan representatives and highlighted the request made by the Pacific Island Forum to allow for a human rights fact-finding mission to be sent to West Papua. Video, Ch.36 at  http://webtv.un.org/watch/item4-general-debate-39th-meeting-31st-regular-session-human-rights-council/4801934246001


      RNZI. A meeting of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. Photo: AFP



                                            


    Solomon Islands Prime Minister

    The Solomon Star (14 March) also reported that the Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare said that while the MSG respects the sovereignty of Indonesia over West Papua, it will still vigorously pursue the reports of the violation of human rights in the country that is struggling for self-determination. Allegations of gruesome human rights abuses perpetrated by Indonesian armed forces on West Papuans have been widely reported, however, no concrete action has been taken to bring those responsible to justice. But MSG chairman and Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare said the abuses were something they could not shy away from, even though they recognised that Indonesia had authority over West Papua.


    "The matter of self-determination is a matter between the West Papuans and Indonesia to discuss,” Sogavare told the Fiji media during his visit there last week.  “But when it comes to human rights violations, I think we can and we have a duty as members of the UN to express our views and concerns and we hope the President of Indonesia will respect that for the good of all. "All right thinking people of planet earth should be able to express concern when a race is persecuted for what they believe in for expressing their thinking and expressing how they want to organise themselves," Sogavare said. He said they continued to encourage the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat to send an independent fact-finding mission made up of NGOs and churches to West Papua to find out more about the human rights violations.



    Rex Horoi to be appointed Solomons’ West Papua envoy

    Radio NZ International reported (22 March) that Former Solomon Islands diplomat Rex Horoi is expected to be appointed his country’s special envoy on West Papua at the Melanesian Spearhead Group.Solomons Prime Minister, Manasseh Sogovare, has intimated that Mr Horoi - the outgoing Director of the Foundation for the Peoples of the South Pacific - will take up the post shortly.Mr Horoi will be responsible for ensuring MSG support for West Papua's inclusion in the United Nations Decolonisation list. Under a Solomon Islands plan designed last year, the country was to have appointed a special envoy to lobby Pacific island governments to support West Papua's inclusion on the list.


    Support for West Papua raises concerns in Jakarta

    The continuing support for West Papua by a number of countries in the Pacific has raised concerns in Jakarta. To counter the growing support Indonesia is considering strengthen its ties with South Pacific countries by appointing a special envoy to the region with a portfolio including West Papua. Indonesia sent a delegation to Fiji and PNG to strengthen bilateral relations with the countries in the South Pacific region.Indonesia’s Coordinating Minister for Political, Security and Legal Affairs Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan said that Indonesia will be consistently present in the South Pacific by sending ministers to the 16 countries in the region."To Prime Minister Josaia Bainimarama and foreign minister Ratu Inoke Kubuabola I have conveyed that we will be consistently present in the region," he said during his visit to Fiji (Antara News 31 March).


    The United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) has objected to the move by Indonesia to commission an envoy to the Pacific on behalf of its Melanesian population. The Liberation Movement's ambassador for Oceania and the Pacific Islands region, Amatus Douw, pointed out that he already serves the role as envoy for Papuan interests in the Pacific.The Australia-based diplomat warned that Indonesia's envoy plan was about expanding its colonialist agenda and nothing to do with representing the interests of Papuans.


    The United Liberation Movement for West Papua's Pacific ambassador Amatus Douw (third from left) and secretary-general Octo Mote (second from right) talk to New Zealand MPs. Photo: RNZI / Johnny Blades



    During the visit Indonesia’s Coordinating Minister for Political, Security and Legal Affairs met with Prime Minister Bainimarama, the Minister of Agriculture, Resettlement, Maritime and Disaster Mitigation Affairs Ina Seriaritu and had alunch with minister Kubuabola. The Minister said he reiterated Indonesia’s commitment to help and cooperate with Fiji, in the economic, fishery, agricultural, cultural and military fields.


    Regarding the Melanesian Spearhead Group issue, Luhut said that it had been touched upon in the meeting with Foreign Minister Kubuabola. Minister Kubuabola revealed the wish of the government of Fiji to propose upgrading the status of Indonesia at the MSG from an associate member to a full member to strengthen Indonesia’s position in the group of Melanesian countries, he said.  He would report it to President Joko Widodo and discuss it with Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi on his arrival home, Luhut said in response to it. After completing his agenda in Fiji, minister Luhut left Suva Thursday evening for Port Moresby for a two-day official visit to Papua New Guinea.



    In Fiji the Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan symbolically handed over aid worth US$5 million to  Fijian Prime Minister J.V. Bainimarama to help rebuild the country after Cyclone Winston. Pandjaitan also expressed his sympathy and condolences to the Fijian government and people over the disaster that devastated the South Pacific country last February. Bainimarama held a closed-door meeting with Pandjaitan, who was accompanied by Indonesian Ambassador to Fiji Gary R.M. Jusuf, the vice governor of Papua, and the governor of Maluku.


    RNZI (I April) reported that the Pacific Conference of Churches saying that donors and foreign governments must treat victims of disaster with dignity and not attach conditions to relief efforts. The call coincides with this week's visit to Fiji of Indonesia's Co-ordinating Minister for Political Affairs, Law and Security, Luhut Binsar Padjaitan. Mr Padjaitain is reportedly to give Fiji an assistance package worth up to 5 million US dollars and a contingent of engineers for the country's rehabilitation efforts in the wake of the devastation caused by Cyclone Winston last month. PCC General Secretary, Reverend Francois Pihaatae, said Indonesia's offer should be welcomed but noted that Padjaitan's visit had glaring political overtones. He noted the minister had been "extremely vocal against groups seeking self-determination in Papua" and had publicly called for West Papuan activists to be removed from the country. In Jakarta, a senior government official told Indonesian media earlier this week that the ministerial visit was to suppress regional support for the United Liberation Movement for West Papua. As the ULMWP was recently granted observer status at the Melanesian Spearhead Group, Jakarta has increased its diplomatic overtures to the region. But Reverend Pihaatae said that any bilateral talks between Indonesia and Fiji on the issue of West Papua should not be influenced by assistance to cyclone victims.


    The Indonesian delegation also visited PNG and at a bilateral meeting the PNG Foreign and Immigration Minister Rimbink Pato Pato discussed various cooperation opportunities including in the fields of economy, investment, trade, and energy, particularly LNG, and flights connecting the two neighboring countries. They also discussed cooperation between the two nations police and military, especially to guard the border areas. PNG, which will host an APEC Summit in 2018 and is eager to take a cue from Indonesia on ways to organize a major international meeting. The Government of PNG supported Indonesia to get the status of associative member of MSG. The two countries have signed 11 memoranda of understanding and three agreements to strengthen bilateral partnership based on mutual respect.




    News in brief


    Congratulations to Ash, director of “Punks for West Papua” on his latest award of recognition. Well deserved. The Doco will be showing at the 

    at Wayward Brewing Co. on Wednesday April 6. Doco showing  at 7pm. Wayward Brewing Company Unit 1-3 Gehrig Lane, Annandale










    Church report

    A delegation of church and lay people went to West Papua and Jakarta in February this year.  The purpose of the delegation was to build links and

    to listen to the stories of Papuans about their human rights concerns so the fact finding mission  could report on this to the wider community, governments, the UN and other major bodies and organisations. During their fact-finding mission they interviewed more than 250 community leaders in Japapura, Merauke, Timika and Sorong. ALLEGATIONS of recent military and police intimidation, beatings and torture, kidnapping and murder in West Papua, have been documented in the new Church report.

    The report documents religious, social and economic discrimination including how the carve up of land for major development has benefited multinationals and excluded Papuans from ownership and jobs. It refers to a slow motion genocide happening 250km north of Australia. The report has not yet been publicly released.





    Benny Wenda visits Ghana






                                         Benny Wenda meeting with His Excellency President Jerry John Rawlings



    Benny Wenda visited Ghana to join Ghanaians in celebrating the 59th anniversary of their country’s independence. Benny met with prominent people and top officials like former Presidents J.A Kuffuor and J.J Rawlings to dialogue on how effectively they could help liberate west Papua from Indonesia. Former President Jerry John Rawlings has also pledged his support to fight for the independence of the West Papuans. He said "we are honored to fight for your people. We share a similar history.""It is no surprise to me that you had support from Ghana at the UN in 1969 and that we accepted West Papuan refugees in the 1980's. West Africa has seen slavery, colonial struggles and independence""Chief you find yourself in a very painful situation. I suggest that you contact and lobby every congressman, senator and parliamentarian. The European Commission, the AU and all organisations. Keep knocking and knock again, don't let them sleep""We will contribute by reminding them who is still colonised""Keep fighting"




    CALL FOR ACTION – AUSTRALIA 

    Stand in solidarity with the West Papuans demanding a free and fair vote to determine their future.

    On May 3rd, 2016 there will be a meeting of the International Parliamentarians for West Papua in the UK Houses of Parliament.

    This meeting is very important, as it will mark the official call for an internationally supervised vote in West Papua by the end of the decade. 

    Please Join the international online CALL FOR ACTION and stand in SOLIDARITY with the West Papuan people 

    starting APRIL 01 – MAY 03, 2016.


    Take Action from your computer, phone or tablet

    1) Download and print the SIGN below

    2) Take a photo of yourself holding THE SIGN YOU HAVE JUST PRINTED; include your name and location at the bottom (e.g. Mary, NSW, AUSTRALIA). 

    3) Post your photo to twitter, Instagram or Facebook. Be sure to include the hashtags #LetWestPapuaVote #IPWP #ILWP #WESTPAPUA #INDONESIA #BREAKTHESILENCE 

    On Twitter include @UN

    4) After you post, email your photo to us at office@rememberwestpapua.org or post on our Facebook page FREE WEST PAPUA CAMPAIGN AUSTRALIA and on your State pages.
    RISE UP FOR WEST PAPUA AND BREAK THE SILENCE IN AUSTRALIA







    Community policing training programme

    The deputy head of political affairs at the Netherlands Embassy in Indonesia, Maarten van den Bosch, visited West Papua region where he checked on the progress of a community policing training programme it supports in West Papua. The programme jointly operated by the International Organisation for Migration with Dutch funding is training over five thousand personnel in community policing across three provinces: Papua, West Papua and Maluku.

    The Dutch Government says it's received positive feedback about the training programme which began in 2013 and will end later this year (From RNZI 8 March).





    Four highway construction workers were killed 

    Four highway construction workers were killed by an armed group in Mulia, Puncak Jaya on the 15 March at around 13:45local time. Three were killed during the attack with one dying later in hospital. The attackers also burned an excavator and a bulldozer belonging to PT Modern, the contractor building the road. The Chief of the Puncak Jaya Resort Police, Senior Commissioner Adjunct Marcelis confirmed the incident occurred in Agenggen Village of Sinak Sub-district, Puncak Jaya Regency. The Papua Police chief Insp. Gen. Paulus Waterpauw told Tempo that forty police and military personnel were deployed to the scene to find the perpetrators According to the Jakarta Globe (16 March) The West Papuan National Liberation Army claimed responsibility for the attack, “We are responsible for the shootings. Now, [every movement] has been under one command,” WPNLA spokesman Sebby Sambom said on late Wednesday, as reported by Republika on Wednesday (16/03). Sebby said the attack was intended to end the construction of Jalan Trans Papua — a major piece of President Joko Widodo's infrastructure plan — calling the 4,000 kilometer long road a type of colonialism.

    Antara News reported (18 March) the Indonesian Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu as saying that armed rebels have no place in the country, including those attempting to free Papua from Indonesia, because allowing them to keep existing would only create fear among the people.  "Their existence cannot be tolerated," he told journalists in response to the separatist movement in Indonesia and the need to promote a state defense program.

    Ryamizard said he believed in the involvement of parties in foreign countries in every separatist movement. Therefore, he warned that their unlawful acts would not be tolerated.  For the armed rebels in the Indonesian province of Papua who launch attacks, they would be stopped to avoid the people feeling terrorized. "We have been patient enough and this must be stopped in the best way," he said.



    Foreign Minister visits Indonesian

    The Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs Julie Bishop is visited Indonesian (20 to 23 March). In Jakarta, the Foreign Minister met with her Indonesian counterpart, Foreign Minister Retno Maraud, and other senior ministers. She formally opened Australia’s newly constructed embassy in Jakarta and a new Australian Consulate-General in Makassar. However, no mention of West Papua during her visit. AWPA’s release athttp://awpasydneynews.blogspot.com.au/2016/03/media-release-australian-foreign.html





    LIPI Urges Jokowi to Hold National Dialogue on Papua

    TEMPO.CO, Jakarta-Papua Study Team of Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) has urged President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) to immediately convene national dialogue to end atrocities in Papua which have been happening for over 50 years. According to the Study Team chief Adriana Elisabeth, President Jokowi has already expressed his willingness to hold dialogue with all parties during his visit to Papua in 2015. “However, the concept of dialogue intended by President Jokowi was unclear. Papuan people are waiting,” Adriana said in a media briefing at LIPI office, Jakarta on Monday, March 14, 2016. Adriana believed that Jokowi is the only figurehead who could bridge the dialogue with Papuans. Therefore, the study team has called for national dialogue to be realized this year. “This year is the best momentum to convene national dialogue. Next year, [politicians] will be preoccupied with elections,” she said.  Meanwhile, Papuan diaspora are doubling down on their efforts to voice human rights violations suffered by the Papuans and their demands to free themselves from Indonesia. Adriana admitted that many parties are reluctant to hold dialogue as it is often associated with separatism. However, she is optimistic that dialogue could be held if the parties involved eliminate suspicions among themselves. “Dialogue might be an alien concept in Indonesia. But don’t be afraid to hold dialogue.” MARIA RITA (Tempo !5 March)







    Eight Revelations From Tony Abbott’s Openly Pro-War Crimes Quadrant Essay 
    From a New Matilda )

    Extract in relation to West Papua.


    Australia Sent West Papuans Seeking Asylum Overseas And Blocked A Peace Flotilla

    Incredibly, after the Sri Lanka boast, Abbott does it again, bragging about secretly sending activists back to Papua New Guinea and blocking a peace flotilla.

    “As a very early sign of good faith to the Indonesians, I had West Papuan activists, who’d arrived in the Torres Strait claiming asylum, quietly returned to Papua New Guinea. A protest boat seeking to sail from Australia to Indonesian West Papua was prevailed upon never to leave. Quite rightly, the Indonesians regarded vessels leaving Australia for Indonesia without lawful purpose as an affront to their sovereignty—and that exactly matched my government’s attitude to vessels bound for Australia in defiance of our law.”

    West Papuan independence was prevented by a sham referendum in 1969, and subsequent domination by Indonesia. A 2004 paper headed by Yale academic Allard K. Lowenstein noted widespread evidence of disappearances and killings at the hands of Indonesian police, finding “even if the acts described in the paper were not carried out with intent to destroy the West Papuans as a group, a necessary element of the crime of genocide, many of these acts clearly constitute crimes against humanity under international law.”

    The startling thing about the Wes Papua passages in the Quadrant essay is how proud Abbott appears to be of this complicity in human rights abuses. This is not a justification, it’s an open celebration.






    ULMWP Public Discussion Canceled due to Police’s Attendance

    JUBI 15 March



    Police stand in front of Mimika student dormitory at Jalan Kamp Wolker Perumnas I Waena, Jayapura – Jubi

    Jayapura, Jubi – On 8 March 2015 at 22:05 Papua time, the Internal Affairs working team of the United Liberation Movement of West Papua (ULMWP), Markus Haluk and the Central Executive Board of the Indonesia-Highland Student Association (DPP-AMPTPI) agreed to hold a discussion forum to update the current situation and latest development occurred in Papua.

    DPP-AMPTPI was assigned to create a team to facilitate the public discussion with Markus Haluk as resource person. The working team member Hendrikus Madai said since 8 March to 11 March 2016, the working team has done any relevant preparations for the success of discussion. Madai who’s also the Deputy Secretary General of DPP AMPTPI, said the discussion was planned to be held in Mimika student dormitory at Jalan Kamp Wolker Perumnas I Waena, Jayapura.


    “After obtaining permission from Mimika student dormitory board, and chairs were set for the invitees, the invitation was sent to the activists, students and public via printed invitation letters, facebook, WhatsApp and SMS with expectation about 300-500 people would participate in the forum,” said Madai to Jubi in Mimika student dormitory’s yard on Saturday (12/3/2016).

    He said several issues to be raised in the discussion are including the unity among Papuans, controversy on the opening of ULMWP Office in Jayawijaya Regency, and the extent of support by international community towards the struggle of Papuan people that represented by ULMWP to the update on current situation in Papua, which is through the seminar it would provide a good and factual understanding for Papuan people.

    “But, unfortunately on the day the forum should be implemented, on Saturday (12/3/2016) at 08:40 Papua time, five equipped police officers came to Mimika student dormitory’s yard,” Madai explained.

    Then, he added, they guarded the entry of student dormitory blocking the participants to enter the room. Meanwhile, police officers were standby at the outside of student dormitory. The Police parked 5 cars at dormitory’s yard while a car (Avanza) and police truck were parked at Perumnas 1 intersection.


    “There were also officers not wearing the uniform and taking radio HT. I suggested they are police intelligent,” he said. Deputy Committee Antonius Yohame said looking at the situation, he promptly made coordination with Markus Halus as key resource person from ULMWP and Secretary General AMPTPI as person in charge of the seminar and public discussion. “And they requested us (the committee) to cancel the event and people who were already in the room to dissolve themselves,” he said. Jubi’s reporter had inquired to the police officers guarded in front of Mimika student dormitory, but they didn’t give any answers. (Abeth You/rom)



    China eyes Papua sago investment

    RNZI 22 March 2016


    Chinese investors are keen to be involved in the sago processing industry in the Papua region. Indonesia's investment co-ordinating agency, BKPM, said an initial investment of $US62 million dollars was being planned. Tabloid Jubi reported the BKPM chief Franky Sibarani saying there was a strategic value in the sago processing investment because the sector was categorized as labour-intensive and this development was expected to employ about 1500 workers in Papua. He said the Chinese investors were positive not only in terms of increasing investment in Indonesia, but also in taking an important role in Papua's development. Franky Sibarani said investment was being planned in more sago processing, wood processing and a biomass electricity power plant.




    Special Autonomy Stuck due to Jakarta Interventions

    4 April 2016






     

    The Special Autonomy Law has not solved the social gap between Papua and other regions in Indonesia – Jubi

    Jayapura, Jubi – After almost 16 years, the Special Autonomy Law has not solved the social gap between Papua and other regions in Indonesia.

    The Special Autonomy Law is also a materialization of the highest recognition from the Indonesian Government towards Papuan people, especially the indigenous people.


    It is expected to provide opportunities and broaden the participation of indigenous Papuans in all areas of development. However, in reality, many Papuans believed it has not achieved its purpose. But Papua Governor Lukas Enembe wanted to retain it. The Second Secretary of Papua Customary Council, John NR Gobai said the authority of Special Autonomy Law wasn’t running optimal because of overlapping rules or double standard.

    “We are really different with Aceh, for instance in the use of full authority of Special Autonomy. In Papua, it is not firmed, and so many interventions from the Central Government to Papua,” he told Jubi in Abepura on Saturday (2/4/2016).

    According to Gobai who also the Paniai Regional Customary Council Chief, that each Perdasus (Special Regional Regulation) or Perdasi (Provincial Regulation) always need to be consulted to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, therefore speaking on Papua Special Autonomy is clearly to be cut by the Central Government. He said the Central Government much believes on ‘spies’ in Papua than the Regional Government. He gave example on the conflict of mining permits that are still overlapping between the authority of Papua Governor and the regents.


    “It is happening because of the appliance of two regulations, namely the Law of Regional Government and Special Autonomy Law in Papua Province,” he said.

    Meanwhile, the Indonesian councilor of Papua representative the Rev. Charles Simaremare firmly said in line with the rejection of Special Autonomy by Papuan people, and Papua provincial civil servants was happened because of the implementation of Papua Special Autonomy has not been run properly as the authority has not been fully given to the Provincial Government as the administrator. As its reference is not clear, he added, many Special Regional Regulations are certainly not running yet. “Because if talking about Papua Special Autonomy, it should involve a huge authority and the important role of people is also need to be improved to prosperity,” he said. (Abeth You/rom)








    Opinion pieces/reports/ press releases etc.


    INDONESIA: Judicial and legal systems have failed to address torture





    Indonesia cannot ignore its Papuan problem




    Eliminate the “Smoke” ULMWP





    PT Selaras Inti Semesta continues logging, but isn’t giving work to Zanegi villagers




    Government approach in Papua criticised in Human Rights Commission Indigenous People’s Inquiry findings.





    Palm Oil Plantation Invades Sacred Sago Forest, Customary Leader Says




    Doubts linger over Jokowi’s  call for Papuan development






    0 0

    2) President to Officiate Wasior Harbor in West Papua
    3) Four Sentani High School Students Fly with NASA to Space
    4) Accomplice to atrocity?
    ———————————————————————————————————
    http://tabloidjubi.com/eng/pcc-like-it-or-not-luhuts-visit-seen-as-politically-charged/
    1) PCC : Like It or not, Luhut’s Visit Seen as Politically Charged
    4 April 2016

    Jayapura, Jubi – A visit by Coordinating Minister for Security, Legal and Political Affairs Luhut Panjaitan to Fiji ostensibly to deliver the Indonesian government’s aid to Fiji Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama should be seen as an attempt to influence the Pacific nation on the issue of Papua.
    “It is the same minister who once asked Papuans to go out of their own land and to stay in Melanesia,” the Secretary General of PCC the Rev. Francois Pihaatae told Jubi by phone from Suva, Fiji.

    Luhut B. Panjaitan said he came to Fiji to deliver aid worth US$5 billion, but Pihaatae said this visit, like or dislike, must be noted as political.
    “This minister is very articulated towards Papuan activists who fight for self-determination. Earlier, he also acknowledged that Indonesian relationship with Pacific countries was less warmed. Only Fiji and Papua New Guinea have good relation with Indonesia,” added Pihaatae.
    He hoped there is no requirement behind the Indonesian aid. Further Pihaatae who domiciled in Fiji admitted currently Fiji needs supports but it must be ensured the aid is free of political purpose or any conditions.
    “That’s what we called the humanity aid. We hope, whatever have been discussed between Fiji and Indonesia would not be affected by the aid,” he said.
    Fiji, according to him, has made clear on this matter to Australia and New Zealand, which have become ‘enemies’ of Fiji in Pacific.
    “It is must be applied to anyone who want to help Fiji,” said Pihaatae.
    Earlier, the Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Human Rights Affairs, though acknowledged the relation between Indonesia and Pacific countries was not so close, but he said his visit to Fiji and Papua New Guinea had no connection with the strengthening of Indonesian position in Melanesia Spearhead Group (MSG) or Papua issues in the Pacific.
    He also denied his visit to respond the failure done by the Minister of Foreign Affairs in treating the Papua issues in the Pacific. “No, it’s not connected. I always consult with her (Minister of Foreign Affairs),” the Minister Luhut answering reporters.
    “That’s only because I am here (in Jayapura), so I will go directly there (to Fiji) because there was hurricane and other things,” he added. (Victor Mambor/rom)
    ————————————————————
    http://jakartaglobe.beritasatu.com/news/president-officiate-wasior-harbor-west-papua/
    2) President to Officiate Wasior Harbor in West Papua
    By : Eko Prasetyo | on 9:43 AM April 05, 2016
    Jakarta. President Joko Widodo will officially open the Wasior Harbo in Wondama Bay district, West Papua on Tuesday (05/04) during his official visit in the region.
    “Wasior Harbor is the collector port in the hierarchy of seaports,” Ari Dwipayana, a member of the presidential communication team, said n a statement received by the Jakarta Globe.
    The 2008 law on shipping outlines the main function of a collector port as serving domestic shipping activities, transfers and the origin port of interprovincial passengers and goods.
    Wasior Harbor is intended to meet the transportation needs of the Wondana Bay district, while improving the local economy and smoothing price disparities among regions.
    The dock construction includes passenger terminals, an office, a warehouse and a security post




    ———————————————————-
    http://tabloidjubi.com/eng/four-sentani-high-school-students-fly-with-nasa-to-space/

    3) Four Sentani High School Students Fly with NASA to Space
    4 April 2016
    Jayapura, Jubi – On 23 March at 11:05 Indonesia time, Atlas V rocket launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida, the United States. It would be at a low orbit or at the an altitude of about 400 km from the earth.
    It took a micro-lab, which contains scientific experiments of high school students. The astronauts would transfer it to the Nanoracks, a research facility located in the US National Lab in space.
    The micro-lab, which equipped with digital camera, censor and micro-controller, contains two experiments of ‘how to grow paddy in space’ and ‘how to grow yeast in space’. Thus, the growing of paddy and yeast during the experiment could be monitored from the earth by internet connection to download the pictures of the micro-lab that broadcasting to the earth.
    At the time, the students who made the micro-lab could observe and write the result of their experiment.
    Unexpectedly, the high school students who involved in the research are coming from Jayapura Regency. They are Bob Kaway, Thinus Lamek Yewi, Anatsya Womsiwor and Stefince Irene Cenderawasih. Bob and Thinus are students of SMA Advent Doyo Baru while Anatsya and Stefince are studying at SMA I Sentani. Their research was pronounced to pass the flight test of National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in last January, thus their research are worth taken to the space. They joined other 16 high school students from Medan, Jakarta and Bandung who divided into two team, paddy research team and yeast research team.
    Bob Kaway and Thinus Lamek Yewi are now at 12th grade but not classmate. They are so glad to know they are qualified and joined into the research team with NASA.
    To IDNTimes, Bob admitted earlier he wanted become a priest. “Actually I want to be a priest, but after I passed this selection it comes to my mind that I want to be a scientist,” said Bob. Meanwhile Thinus said he never thought his research would pass the selection.
    “Previously I never thought that I can make it, but God arrange all of it to be happened,” said Thinus.
    The success of four students was blossomed in the early October last year when participating into first selection by Jayapura Regional Education Office in collaboration with NASA.
    And now they have invitation to present their research at the Annual Conference of the American Society for Gravitational and Space Research at Washington DC in November 2016. (Victor Mambor/rom)
    Inside Indonesia 124: Apr-Jun 2016
    ————————————————————-

    http://www.insideindonesia.org/accomplice-to-atrocity
    4) Accomplice to atrocity?
    Written by Marlene Millott
    When the Indonesian army massacred an estimated half a million alleged communists in 1965, it did so with the backing of western powers. The role of the United States as an accomplice through its provision of intelligence, training, weaponry and communications equipment has been well documented. Although Australia’s role was subordinate to that of the US, it still has a case to answer.
    In the lead-up to 1965, much of the world was caught up in the Cold War that pitted western-style capitalism and democracy against the communist Soviet Union and China. In Indonesia, President Sukarno grew closer to the Indonesian Communist Party (PKI), while becoming increasingly hostile towards the west and foreign corporations. This worried the PKI’s fierce rivals, the Indonesian army, whose power waned as the PKI’s grew. It was also watched closely by the US and its allies, who feared the country would fall to communism, which would then spread through Asia and onto Australia’s doorstep. In response, the army and the US formed a secret relationship. As told in John Roosa’s Pretext to Mass Murder, between 1958 and 1965 the US trained, funded and advised the Indonesian army, and helped turn it into a ‘state within a state’ that would be ready to take over government if the opportunity arose. Further heightening tension, Sukarno strongly opposed the formation of the state of Malaysia out of Malaya, North Borneo and Singapore in 1963. He committed troops to Borneo to fight British, Australian and New Zealand forces as part of Konfrontasi.  Even closer to home, Sukarno had earlier combined diplomacy and the threat of force to successfully bring West Papua into Indonesia.
    After an alleged attempted PKI coup on 1 October 1965, the Indonesian army seized the opportunity to gain control of the country and eliminate the PKI and its affiliates. Led by General Suharto, the army embarked on a nation-wide killing spree, enlisting local militia groups to help them identify, arrest, and kill members and sympathisers. This campaign was supported by the US, the UK and Australia, which hoped for an end to the threat of a communist-dominated Indonesia, and for the installation of a leader friendlier to the west.
    In the months following the attempted coup, the Australian embassy and the Department of External Affairs supported the Indonesian army’s anti-communist campaign to bring about a change of government. Documents from the National Archives of Australia reveal three main points about embassy officials and the massacres: that the Australian embassy knew they were happening, but did not condemn them; that Australia gave assurance and support to the Indonesian army who they knew were responsible for these massacres; and that Australia actively contributed to the mass anti-communist hysteria through propaganda broadcasts via Radio Australia.
    A key figure in Australia’s support for the army’s anti-communist campaign was then ambassador to Indonesia, Keith ‘Mick’ Shann. He had joined the Department of External Affairs in 1946, as part of its expansion following the end of World War II. He was ambassador to Indonesia between 1962 and 1966, had previously been ambassador to the Philippines, and later became ambassador to Japan. He rounded off his career as chairman of the Australian Public Service Board. Shann believed firmly in anti-communist policies, in both domestic and foreign contexts. As ambassador during the Indonesian army’s anti-communist campaign, the department relied heavily on information and instruction from Shann, who played a big role in advising on the operation of Radio Australia, and passed on requests from the Indonesian army to the broadcaster. He was knighted in 1980 for his services to Australia.
    Soon after the attempted coup, the Australian embassy observed the early stages of the army’s campaign against the PKI. It knew about the very first rounding up of communists in early October 1965. On 5 October, a cable from Shann to the department reported that the army was ‘picking up a fair number of Communists and a large number of the Pemuda Rakjat [PKI Youth Wing].’  Later in the month, the ambassador wrote that he ‘personally witnessed’ around 250 prisoners being taken away by the army.
    By January 1966, the Australian, US, UK and other embassies were exchanging information on the ‘dismemberment of the PKI' at the hands of the army and its supporters.  Estimates put the number of dead between 100,000 and 200,000 and increasing, though one cable noted ‘it is impossible to make any accurate assessment of the number of people who have been killed’. By February, the Australian embassy received first-hand, irrefutable proof that painted a very clear picture of the scale of the atrocities.  J.M. Starey, the First Secretary at the embassy, visited Bali, Flores and Timor, and spoke to Australian students who had been in Lombok, to gather information on the anti-PKI massacres. In Bali, Starey was shocked to learn that the number of those killed was 100,000, a number which, he wrote, was ‘ferociously high’, representing five per cent of the population. In Flores, he saw heads on spikes and he estimated 1000 people had been killed. He reported that the Ende Military District was responsible for anti-PKI activity in Central and West Flores, and was told that once Flores was ‘cleansed’, the process would continue in other parts of the island. The students told him that in Mataram and Lombok, the killings were continuing at the rate of around 30 people per night. While in Timor, Starey’s report said that ‘torture was the customary prelude to death’; public executions were a nightly event and deaths had totalled 4000 people. Starey noted that the army was in full control of the proceedings in Timor.
    These communications make it clear that the embassy and the Department of External Affairs were quite aware that the army was carrying out systematic massacres of alleged PKI members and sympathisers across Indonesia. The events on the night of 1 October 1965 (initiated by the so-called 30 September Movement) changed Indonesian politics. They gave the Indonesian army an opportunity to remove the PKI from power – a situation that Australia and its allies had been hoping for some time. Immediately after, embassy officials made clear their hopes that the army would seize their opportunity to act. On the fifth of October, Shann cabled the department saying that he ‘devoutly hope[d]’ that ‘the army [would] act firmly’ against the PKI. As Australian officials observed developments, they praised the army for doing ‘far better than expected,’ having ‘gone ahead with attacks on the PKI’. Embassy officials were encouraged that the army was prepared to proceed ‘in order to make a real clean-up of communists and their allies’. By mid-1966, Australian Prime Minister Harold Holt made clear his satisfaction with the pro-western shift in Indonesian foreign and economic policy brought about by the massacres. At the Australian-American Association in New York, he callously joked ‘With 500,000 to one million Communist sympathisers knocked off, I think it is safe to assume a reorientation has taken place’.
    Throughout the army’s anti-communist campaign, embassy officials were in regular contact with top army officials on the issue. By 1965 Australia had been part of a military campaign in Borneo for two years, to defend the newly created state of Malaysia against Indonesian aggression. In November 1965, Ambassador Shann reported a conversation he had with an under secretary from the Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Dr A.Y. Helmi, who requested that Australian and British troops ‘restrict all patrols and other activities to an absolute minimum’, explaining that the army needed all its available troops and resources ‘to deal with what he [described] as “the bloody Communists”’. Shann reassured Helmi that the army was ‘completely safe in using their forces for whatever purposes they saw fit’, knowing those forces would be used to attack PKI members and allies. Shann went as far as to say in his cable that he would have liked to tell the Indonesian army ‘that for all [he] cared, they could remove every soldier from Indonesian Borneo without fear’.
    Australia’s biggest contribution to the army’s anti-communist campaign was broadcasting and supporting Indonesian army propaganda. The army seized control of virtually all of Indonesia’s media after the attempted coup. It began an aggressive and pervasive anti-PKI campaign, spreading dangerous disinformation to discredit and dehumanise the communists. During the time of the killings, Radio Australia was under the guidance of the Department of External Affairs. Its foreign broadcasts reached most parts of the Indonesian archipelago. The department in turn received instruction from the Indonesian army via the embassy. By means of this regular daily guidance, Radio Australia fed the Indonesian population an Indonesian army-approved political narrative that, Shann said, ‘should [be thumped] into Indonesians’ as much as possible. Shann asserted that Radio Australia’s broadcasts were ‘excellent propaganda and of assistance to the anti-PKI forces’ who were ‘refreshingly determined to do over the PKI’. He encouraged them to ‘highlight reports tending to discredit the PKI and to show its involvement in… the 30th September movement’.
    Evidence shows that Radio Australia was not just encouraged to drill certain ‘facts’ into Indonesian heads. It was also instructed to report manipulations of the truth as if they were facts, in line with Indonesian army requests. On 9 November 1965, Shann cabled that he had been approached by an unnamed colonel from the army’s Information Section, who told him that Radio Australian should ‘mention as often as possible youth groups and other organisations, both Moslem and Christian’ that were involved in anti-communist actions (thus clearly hoping to dilute the army’s culpability). He also discussed a list of other internal and external issues to be reported that would favour the army. Shann concluded the cable with the comment that he could ‘live with most of this, even if we must be a bit dishonest for a while’. Radio Australia was also told to avoid ‘giving information to the Indonesian people that would be withheld by the army-controlled internal media’, to avoid compromising the army’s position.
    It is difficult to estimate the reach and influence Radio Australia had convincing civilians to join the army’s anti-PKI campaign and take up arms against communists. It is known, however, that Radio Australia was the most popular of the foreign radio stations. An army officer told the Australian embassy in June 1965 that Radio Australia was listened to more than his own official Radio Republik Indonesia. There can be no doubt that the mass media propaganda had a substantial impact on the Indonesian public. Even where it did not directly motivate people to kill, it made the killings appear justified. Sukarno himself understood the power of this propaganda. In a speech in January 1966 he lumped the army-controlled media and western media outlets together and said they represented a ‘neo-colonial threat’. He warned against using the media as a political tool to ‘carry out secret campaigns of slander’ to undermine his leadership and cause anti-PKI hysteria.  Foreign news reports on the horror of the killings included quotes from Indonesians that indicated they had been impacted by anti-PKI propaganda. Seymour Topping of the New York Times noted in an article that ‘many Indonesians say bluntly, “It was them or us”’. This justification of the killings as self-defence was strongly promoted by army propaganda. The justification is still often heard in Indonesia even today.
    Australia’s actions as an accomplice to the 1965 PKI massacres were immoral but their impact should not be exaggerated. The killings took place against a complex backdrop of political tensions in Indonesia. Perhaps the killings would have taken place regardless of Australia’s role in justifying them. However, without that justification, it would have been much harder for Suharto’s New Order to maintain the fiction for so long that they were necessary.
    Marlene Millott (marlene.m@live.com.au) recently completed a Masters in Journalism and International Relations at Monash University. This article is based on research completed for her Masters thesis.


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    3) Papua`s railway development to start in second half of 2016

    4) Government focused on Raja Amat development: Jokowi

    5) New Caledonia referendum inevitable, says Yanno
    6) States-in-Waiting: Introducing Your Future Pacific Neighbours

    7) President to subsidise sea toll transportation

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    1) Fiji, PNG Say They Will Support Indonesia’s Full Membership in MSG
    By : Donny Andhika Mononimbar | on 8:46 PM April 05, 2016



    Indonesian soldiers in Skouw-Wutung, Papua, on Indonesia's border with Papua New Guinea. During an official visit to Fiji and PNG last week, Chief Security Minister Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan said the two countries have agreed to endorse Indonesia as a permanent member of the Melanesian Spearhead Group. (Antara Photo/Sigid Kurniawan)


    Jakarta. Indonesia should have a larger presence in the South Pacific, as parts of the archipelago share the same cultural values with Melanesia, a top minister said.
    During an official visit to Fiji and Papua New Guinea last week, Chief Security Minister Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan said the two countries have agreed to endorse Indonesia as a permanent member of the Melanesian Spearhead Group.
    "Fijian Foreign Minister Ratu Inoke Kubuabola said he would support a motion to boost Indonesia's status from an associate member to a full member of the MSG," Luhut claims. "Being a full member will strengthen Indonesia's position in the MSG."
    PNG Foreign Minister Rimbink Pato also showed his support for Indonesia to become a full member of the MSG. His country will host the MSG summit this year.
    Luhut said the provinces of Papua and West Papua are an inseparable part of Indonesia, and no country should meddle with Indonesia's sovereignty.
    "Fiji and PNG are welcome to visit Papua and West Papua to see what we've done there. But I don't want any fact-finding mission or attempts to meddle in domestic issues. I will not let any country intervene in our business," Luhut said.
    Indonesia's relations with MSG countries, especially Vanuatu, has been rocky to say the least. Over the past few years Vanuatu, and sometimes PNG and the Solomon Islands, have been criticizing Indonesia's handling of Papua and West Papua.
    "We need to maintain good relations with [MSG countries] because those nations have influence. If they get the wrong information about Indonesia, they will take it up with the United Nations," Luhut said, adding that he brought along the deputy governor of Papua, the governor of Maluku, the governor of North Maluku and representatives of East Nusa Tenggara on his trip to show that Indonesia has many citizens of Melanesian descent.
    Luhut said the Indonesian government was doing its best to improve the welfare of the citizens of Papua and West Papua.
    "We are doing the best we can to solve all the problems in those two provinces. We are trying to fix the entire management system there," Luhut said.

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    The ‘Free West Papua Campaign’ is asking Internet users to post photos supporting the hashtag #LetWestPapuaVote.
    West Papua is currently a province of Indonesia, but there is a movement inside and outside the country calling for the establishment of an independent state.The social media campaign promoting the hashtag #LetWestPapuaVote aims to garner the support of the international community in time for the gathering of the International Parliamentarians for West Papua (IPWP) in the United Kingdom Houses of Parliament on May 3.
    The campaign explains:
    This meeting is very important, as it will mark the official call for an internationally supervised vote in West Papua by the end of the decade.

    A brief history of struggle of West Papua

    West Papua was colonized by the Netherlands in 1898. After 62 years, the Dutch government began to prepare West Papua for independence. In 1961, the people of West Papua declared independence and raised their new flag – “The Morning Star“.
    The Indonesian military subsequently invaded West Papua. In 1969, a plebiscite was held where 1,000 delegates selected by the Indonesian military unanimously decided to remain part of Indonesia. It was called the ‘Act of Free Choice’ although Papuan nationalists derided it as the ‘Act of No Choice’.
    Indonesia is accused of committing systematic abuses against West Papuans. There are reports about heavy militarization in the region resulting in severe human rights violations. Meanwhile, the independence movement is treatedas a terrorist group. Media coverage about West Papua is strictly monitored so there’s little information about the real situation of the people in the territory. West Papua is one of the resource-rich provinces of Indonesia, although it has a high poverty rate.
    As Indonesian ‘occupation’ of West Papua continues, the movement supporting the independence struggle has broadened as well. Some lawyersand parliamentarians from across the world have endorsed the campaign urging Indonesia to organize another plebiscite regarding West Papua’s right to self-determination.

    #LetWestPapuaVote

    The current initiative spearheaded by ‘Free West Papua Campaign Australia’ encourages netizens to express support for the struggle of West Papua by posting photos on social media in order to create stronger pressure on the Indonesian government. Below are some photos of individuals who have already joined the campaign:



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    3) Papua`s railway development to start in second half of 2016

    Selasa, 5 April 2016 16:28 WIB | 505 Views
    Teluk Wondama, W Papua (ANTARA News) - The work on the railway infrastructure project in Papua will begin in the second half of 2016, President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) stated.  

    "The project will be started in the second half of 2016," President Jokowi remarked after inaugurating Wasior Port in Wondama Bay, West Papua, here on Tuesday.

    The president called on the people of Papua to adopt a patient approach while awaiting the realization of the project.

    In addition, the head of state pointed out that the establishment of Wasior Port would ensure better connectivity not just among the people but also the regions.

    "The development will unite us from Aceh to Papua," the president affirmed. 

    The government has built 27 sea ports in 2015 and has set a target to build 68 sea ports this year.

    "Currently, there are three routes, and their numbers are expected to increase following the development of the ports," the president stated.

    The construction would improve the distribution of goods and the mobilization of people from one place to another, the president emphasized.

    Earlier, Karlos Dorowe, a West Papua youth leader, had stated in Sorong on Monday that the railway project could be realized during the administration of President Jokowi and Vice President Jusuf Kalla.

    "We hope the railway line, which has been planned since long, would be realized during the current government of President Jokowi and Vice President Kalla," Dorowe stated.

    He noted that the local community had long awaited the implementation of the railway project.

    Dorowe affirmed that railways offered the right solution to solving the transportation problems in Papua and West Papua, which had, so far, relied solely on sea and air transport that were far expensive, and only a few people from the high-income group could afford air transport.

    "Land transportation facilities are only limited to the urban areas. There are no roads connecting one district to another in the province," he pointed out.

    He stated that the local people strongly supported the governments plan to build a rail transport facility to link Sorong in the western end to the West Papua provincial city of Manokwari.

    West Papua Transportation and Communication Department spokesman Bambang Heriawan Soesanto said in Manokwari early in December 2015 that the master plan of a railway project in the province was expected to be completed immediately.

    "The railway system should be available soon as this program is important for large-scale economic development in West Papua," Soesanto remarked.

    He stated that the consulting and technical teams from the West Papua Department of Transportation and Communication had been on the field to survey, assess, and seek inputs on the districts and cities that will be covered by the railway network.

    Soesanto stated that the construction of a railway network in West Papua was an effective program, with a long-term vision.

    He believes that the existence of a railway network in West Papua will be able to improve effectiveness and efficiency in the distribution of mining, agricultural, and plantation commodities to support the regional economy.(*)



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    4) Government focused on Raja Amat development: Jokowi

    Selasa, 5 April 2016 20:01 WIB | 421 Views
    Manokwari (ANTARA News) - President Joko Widodo said tourism development in Papua Barat is focused on development of Raja Ampat in the Raja Ampat District.

    "This year we are still focused on development of Raja Ampat. (Development of) the Arfak mountainous tourist destination will come later," the president said here in Tuesday. 

    He said the budget has been set only for development of an airport terminal and to lengthen the airport runway in the district of Raja Ampat. 

    The district administration has been told to prepare land for the project, he said, adding construction would start when land has been available. 

    He said there are still many agenda for infrastructure development in Papua Barat.

    There are sea toll, railway, airport and other infrastructure projects to be built, he cited.

    Jokowi said development of the highway between Manokwari-Wasior of Teluk Wondama has to be accelerated this year to be operational in 2017. 

    In addition, the plan to extend the runway of the Rendani Manokwari airport has to be implemented soon to allow the airport to accommodate wide bodied aircraft, he said. 

    He said land clearing has to be completed this year and construction could start next year.(*)



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    5) New Caledonia referendum inevitable, says Yanno
    2:07 pm on 5 April 2016
    New Caledonia's former Congress president says the independence referendum due in 2018 is inevitable
    Gael Yanno told public television that a vote should be held with a clear question to determine whether people want to stay with France.
    Mr Yanno, who is a member of the small anti-independence UCF Party, said once the vote has been held, negotiations will follow on a clear basis.
    Alluding to rivals in his camp, he said he was against talking now about a new accord to be drawn up before the 2018 vote.
    The 1998 Noumea Accord, which has been the decolonisation roadmap transferring powers from France to New Caledonia, will run out with a referendum in 2018.
    As the guarantor of the Noumea Accord, Paris has said the plebiscite will take place although it is up to the territory's accord signatories to draw up the timetable and referendum question.
    Voting will be restricted to long-term residents in line with an amendment to the French constitution.

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    6) States-in-Waiting: Introducing Your Future Pacific Neighbours
    The world’s newest states are likely to emerge from the Pacific Islands. Why is no one paying attention?
    Within a few years, the Pacific Islands region will likely become home to the newest states in the world. Each of these nations is emerging from a complex history of colonization and civil unrest, and the creation of new states in the region has significant political, social, and economic ramifications for the Asia-Pacific as a whole.
    First up is the French overseas territory of New Caledonia, which must hold an independence referendum before the end of 2018. Following violent clashes in the 1980s between the indigenous Kanaks and the pro-French European settlers, the UN listed New Caledonia as a non-self-governing territory in 1986, effectively placing the territory on its “decolonization list.” After further killings, hostage crises, and assassinations in the 1990s, the French government signed the Noumea Accord in 1998, mandating that a vote on independence was to take place before 2019.
    The outcome of the upcoming referendum is difficult to predict, and is causing heated debate in a nation that is already intensely polarized. Changes in 2015 to the electoral eligibility laws prescribed that only the indigenous population and persons who were already enrolled to vote in 1998 would be automatically eligible to vote in the referendum, causing protests among pro-French groups. The latest census results reveal that within a population of 260,000, 39 percent are indigenous Kanaks, whilst 27 percent are European. The remaining 34 percent comprises “mixed race” persons, migrants from other Pacific islands, and a handful of Asian minorities.
    As the referendum approaches, pro-independence activists have some hard work ahead of them in order to broaden their appeal beyond the Kanak bloc and gain the majority vote necessary for independence. Little more can be said at this stage while the New Caledonia Congress continues to debate the question of electoral eligibility, but it seems likely that the results will be close.
    The Autonomous Region of Bougainville, currently a province of Papua New Guinea, will follow suit with a referendum in 2019. The decision to stage a referendum came out of the Bougainville Peace Agreement in 2001, following a long and bloody civil war from 1988-1998. The conflict was fought between Bougainvillean revolutionary forces and the Papua New Guinean military — assisted by the infamous private mercenary company Sandline International – and the ten years of fighting left as many as 20,000 dead.
    Longstanding feelings of alienation toward Papua New Guinea among Bougainville’s estimated population of 250,000 suggests that a strong vote in favor of independence is the most likely outcome of the 2019 vote, meaning that Bougainville could become the world’s next new country.
    In appreciating the necessity to establish diplomatic relations with what may well become the newest fragile state on Australia’s doorstep, Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop announced that Canberra would be setting up a diplomatic post on Bougainville in May 2015. The government of Papua New Guinea responded by banning Australians from travelling there, with PNG Foreign Minister Rimbink Pato denouncing the plans as “outrageous.”
    Despite the overwhelming support for independence among Bougainvilleans, Papua New Guinea’s frosty attitude toward the question of independence intimates that secession is not entirely guaranteed. Part of the peace agreement was that the PNG Parliament would have “final decision making authority” over the referendum results, meaning that Bougainville’s independence will theoretically require parliamentary consent. It is unclear how this will play out in 2019, and it is also unclear how the UN, regional leaders, and Bougainvilleans themselves would respond if Papua New Guinea refused to ratify a vote for independence.
    The Pacific also holds a number of more long-term candidates for statehood. One of the key areas to watch over the next decade is French Polynesia, an island collectivity in the South Pacific that France recently agreed to re-classify as a non-self-governing territory in 2013. As such, the French government was called upon by the UN General Assembly to take rapid steps toward effecting “a fair and effective self-determination process” in French Polynesia, a major win for the indigenous Maohi nationalists.
    Similarly to New Caledonia, the French Polynesian parliament is split between the pro- and anti-independence political parties, and these sentiments broadly divide the population into the indigenous and European camps. The political situation is further complicated by the intertwining of the independence movement with the campaign for recognition and compensation from the French government for the 196 nuclear tests carried out in French Polynesia between 1960-1996, with anger and momentum in the latter movement fueling the independence campaign.
    While a referendum is some way off in French Polynesia, the events in New Caledonia over the next few years are likely to provide significant impetus for the decolonization process. Aside from New Caledonia and French Polynesia, France has another overseas territory in the form of the islands of Wallis and Futuna. Whilst the islands’ indigenous populations have traditionally been strongly pro-French, Futuna chiefs recently hinted at a potential push for independence in the midst of concerns over French mineral exploitation.
    The Pacific Islands of the future seem set for some radical changes. Some of the biggest questions will be those surrounding governance capacity, fiscal independence, and resource management. New Caledonia, home to 25 percent of the world’s nickel reserves, can be expected to undertake a dramatic renegotiation of its mining arrangements upon independence, while the fate of the Panguna copper mine in Bougainville — estimated at a value of $37 billion and an infamous flashpoint for bloody clashes and indigenous exploitation during the 1990s — remains at an impasse.
    Sorely neglected within the field of IR analysis, the Pacific Islands region may yet emerge as as one of the geopolitical hotspots of the 21st century. With a number of other independence movements growing across the Pacific — including the Chilean territory of Rapa Nui (Easter Island)Chuuk State in the Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji’s Rotuma islandsBanaba Island in Kiribati, New Zealand’s Cook Islands, Australia’s Norfolk Island, and the Indonesian territories of West PapuaAcehMaluku, and Kalimantan, to name a just a few — it’s high time that we paid some attention to our Pacific neighbors.
    Sally Andrews is a New Colombo Plan Scholar and the 2015-2016 New Colombo Plan Indonesia Fellow. She is a Director of the West Papuan Development Company and the 2016 Indo-Pacific Fellow for Young Australians in International Affairs.
    This article was first published on the Young Australians in International Affairs blog. This article can be republished with attribution under a Creative Commons Licence. 
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    7) President to subsidise sea toll transportation

    Selasa, 5 April 2016 20:09 WIB | 420 Views
    Wondama Gulf, W Papua (ANTARA News) - The government plans to subsidize sea toll transportation to fulfill the transportation necessities of the people living in remote areas, according to President Joko Widodo (Jokowi).

    "The ticket price should not be expensive. It is better to subsidize the ticket price, so that the people can utilize the facility," the president noted in his speech during the opening of Wasior Port on Tuesday.

    The sea toll transportation program will boost connectivity in Indonesia, particularly to unite the nation from Sumatra to Papua.

    Jokowi stated the government had built several ports in the outer regions of Indonesia to maintain the countrys maritime territory.

    The president remarked that with the implementation of the sea toll lines program, the Indonesian people would be able to utilize this mode of transportation to travel to the motherland.

    "The Acehnese people can travel by ship to Java, Sulawesi, and Maluku and head to Wasior in Papua. The Papuan people can also travel to Sumatra utilizing the sea toll lines," Jokowi stated.

    He pointed out that the authority had been operating the three sea toll routes since last year. In 2016, Jokowi plans to add six sea toll routes.

    Jokowi stated that the government was also targeting to complete the construction or expansion of 27 ports in Indonesia.

    The government plans to add 68 ports by the end of 2016 across several provinces including in Papua, Maluku, East Nusa Tenggara, and Sulawesi.

    He hoped the improved connectivity would also facilitate the smoother distribution of goods and logistics to rural areas in Indonesia.

    The enhanced connectivity is believed to lower the prices of goods to improve the economic conditions in remote areas.

    President Jokowi inaugurated the operations of Wasior seaport at Wondama Bay District in West Papua Province on Tuesday.

    The Wasior port was built as a part of the sea toll lines project in the eastern region of Indonesia.

    The port was built to support connectivity and to meet the needs of public transport facilities and infrastructure in Wasior District.(*)

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    Australia West Papua Association (Sydney)


                                                          Media release 6 April 2016

    Indonesian security forces arrest nine people in Timika 


    The Australia West Papua Association condemns the intimidation of members of the West Papua National Committee (KNPB) on the 5th April. The Timika branch of the KNPB were simply holding a prayer meeting (“Prayers for the Papuan People’s recovery”) with local people from the area and also in support of the  United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP).







    A report from a local human rights activists said the Mimika police and soldiers from the District Military Command (including members of  Densus 88) arrived in armored vehicles and removed all KNPB material, flags, banners including the flags of the MSG countries.


    Nine people were arrested including the chair of the  KNPB in Timika, Steven Itlay. It was reported they were beaten and kicked during the arrests.



    Joe Collins of AWPA said "The continuing support for West Papua by civil society and a number of countries in the Pacific has raised concerns in Jakarta. The internationalization of the issue  is the reason why the security forces in West Papua are cracking down on any rallies in the territory to try and stifle all peaceful political activity which might bring attention to the ongoing human rights abuses in the territory".







    To counter the growing support in the Pacific, Indonesia is considering strengthen its ties with South Pacific countries by appointing a special envoy to the region with a portfolio including West Papua. Indonesia sent a delegation to Fiji and PNG to strengthen bilateral relations with the countries in the South Pacific region. Indonesia’s Coordinating Minister for Political, Security and Legal Affairs Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan said that Indonesia will be consistently present in the South Pacific by sending ministers to the 16 countries in the region. 

    The ULMWP has objected to the move by Indonesia to commission an envoy to the Pacific on behalf of its Melanesian population. The Liberation Movement's ambassador for Oceania and the Pacific Islands region, Amatus Douw, pointed out that he already serves the role as envoy for Papuan interests in the Pacific    



    The community and KNPB believe that:

    1. The Mimika Chief of Police must take responsibility for the brutal treatment of the community and KNPB members, and show respect for our democracy

    2. Indonesia must be open to freedom of public expression for Papuan people

    3. The international community should insist that Indonesia fully allows free expression.

    4. We indigenous Papuans are not just arrested and imprisoned, but also shot dead, we are killed by weapons or by food and drink, and every day indigenous Papuans are dying in the land of Papua.

    5. We urge the UN, through its Committee on Decolonisation to take action to save indigenous Papuans from Genocide!


    Names of those arrested.
    1. Mr. STEVEN Itlay (Ket. KNPB Timika)

    2. Tn. YANTO AWERKYON (Vice Chairman of the KNPB Timika)

    3. Tn. SEM Ukago (Secretary KNPB Timika)

    4. Tn. SEPERIANUS Edoway (Ket. Sector Yamewa)

    5. Mr. O.TINES Tabuni (Ket. Committee)

    6. Mr. YUDIMAN Kogoya (Member KNPB)

    7. Mr. HUBERTUS DIMI (Member KNPB)

    8. Mr. Noak DIMI (Member KNPB)

    9. Mr. YUNUS NAWIPA (Member KNPB)


    sources
    photos from a "church human Rights source in Timika".


    Info received from (translation) Awasmifee via regwestpapua list


    http://westpapuamedia.info/2016/04/05/timika-knpb-arrests-show-space-for-free-expression-ever-more-squeezed-in-papua/




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    2) Pacific News Minute: Indonesia’s Diplomatic Effort to Suppress Support for West Papuan Independence
    3) Discrimination Against Minority Groups Rampant: Komnas HAM
    ———————————————————————————
    1) Independence Activists Detained in Papua
    By : Jakarta Globe | on 11:55 AM April 06, 2016
    Jakarta. At least 12 activists of pro-independence group the West Papua National Committee, or KNPB, were detained after a rally turned violent in Kampung Bhintuka-SP13 field in Mimika, Timika district, Papua on Tuesday (05/04).
    Mimika Police chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Yustanto said the protest was forcefully dispersed after rally coordinator Steven Itlay gave a speech about Papua independence.
    While police and military personnel dispersed protestors, Yustanto was allegedly attacked and beaten by the mob, leaving him with minor bruises to the face.
    “They had earlier promised they would not speak about a referendum and such things. But, they did it during the rally,” Yustanto said in Mimika, on Tuesday as reported by Antara news agency.
    The 12 protestors were detained at a police’s detention facility in Kuala Kencana for further investigation and questioning.
    Yustanto also called on religious figures in the area to avoid politically-driven activities in house of worships, including the movement to seek Papua freedom.
    The rally took place at the same time as President Joko Widodo visit West Papua's Manokwari, forcing officials to beef up security parameters across the province.
    ———————————————————
    2) Pacific News Minute: Indonesia’s Diplomatic Effort to Suppress Support for West Papuan Independence
    By NEAL CONAN • APR 5, 2016
    A senior Indonesian official's tour through Melanesian countries has stirred up controversy after officials in Jakarta described it as an effort to suppress regional support for the independence movement in West Papua.  More on the minister's reception from Neal Conan in the Pacific News Minute.
    Indonesia's Luhut Binsar Padjaitan could not have asked for a better welcome in Port Moresby, where Papua New Guinea's foreign minister Rimbink Pato described his country's relations with Indonesia as excellent.  Papua New Guinea, which occupies the eastern half of New Guinea, regards the western half as an integral part of Indonesia and, the Foreign Minister told Radio New Zealand, "We're not interested in entertaining the issue of self-determination." he added “Human rights is a concern, but that has nothing to do with any call for self-determination”.
    Last year, the Melanesian Spearhead Group granted the United Liberation Movement for West Papua observer status, but popular support for Melanesian activists does not always outweigh the political and economic might of Indonesia.
    For example, on his stop in Fiji, Minister Padjaitan shook hands with Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama in front of a cardboard blow-up of a check for five million dollars, part of an aid package in the wake of last month's Cyclone Winston.  But the money may have come with strings attached.  The reverend Francois Piha'ata-e of the Pacific Conference of Churches noted that during his visit, the Indonesian minister had called for the expulsion of West Papuan activists.  The Reverend also pointed out that two of Prime Minister Bainimarama's most persistent critics...New Zealand and Australia....rushed assistance to Fiji with no pre-conditions.  
    ———————————————————————————————————
    3) Discrimination Against Minority Groups Rampant: Komnas HAM
    By : Edo Karensa | on 11:41 AM April 06, 2016
    Jakarta. Discrimination against religious minority groups remains rampant across Indonesia, according to the National Commission of Human Rights, or Komnas HAM, in its first quarterly report released on Tuesday (05/04).
    Jayadi Damanik, coordinator for religious freedom affairs at Komnas HAM, said discriminatory regulations which attack minority groups and the blocking of house of worship construction dominated the first three months of 2016.
    In West Java, the commission identified at least 33 discriminatory policies and regulations implemented by regional administrations.

    Bekasi topped the list with 12 discriminatory policies, followed by Bogor at second place with 10.
    “The most-prone group is Indonesian Ahmadiyah Congregation because the Bekasi administration implemented some regulations to ban their activities,” Jayadi told a press conference in Jakarta.
    In Bogor, the GKI Yasmin Protestant congregation faces discriminatory policies, with the local government continuing to seal off its church despite a Supreme Court ruling which found the move unlawful.
    Komnas HAM also noted intolerance in Papua, after the Jayawijaya Church Alliance (PGGJ) rejected the building application of Baiturahaman Mosque in Wamena, Papua, on Feb. 26. PGGJ called on the Jayawijaya district administration to revoke the building permit and to impose a ban on women wearing hijab in the district.
    In Bangka Belitung, the local government of Bangka district issued a circulating letter on Jan. 5, demanding the Ahmadiyah community either convert to Sunni Islam or face expulsion from Bangka.
    Jayadi said the Ahmadis moved to a safe location for several days before returning to their homes after police guaranteed the Ahmadis' safety.

    The commission called on President Joko Widodo to help educate local administrations about human rights and religious tolerance issues.
    “Religious freedom must be an indicator of the public service implementation in this country. The government should increase its authorities to help regional administrations to solve the religious freedom issues,” Jayadi said.

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