Tuesday, June 16, 2015

June 2015 West Papua Report is now out!

read the issue here: http://etan.org/issues/wpapua/2015/1506wpap.htm


CONTENTS
This edition's PERSPECTIVE examines Indonesia President Widodo's failure to follow through on his election promises concerning West Papua, as his policy changes are regularly contradicted by those charged with implementing them.

In UPDATE: Five political prisoners in Papua were released as the fate of the rest remains in question. Jokowi's opening of West Papua to foreign journalists will only be meaningful with explicit rules governing access. A Papuan charged with treason over his assistance to journalists in West Papua has been acquitted. New reports tell of torture of Papuan civilians and of security force assaults and mass arrests at peaceful Papuan demonstrations. Plans to establish a new military command in West Papua has met with opposition. A prominent human rights advocate has been threatened with prosecution over his reports of security force excesses. U.S. authorities have inexplicably revoked the visa of prominent Papuan leader Benny Wenda. Jokowi goes to PNG, as the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) summit nears. Fiji groups attack their government's stance on West Papua.
In CHRONICLE: President Widodo is backing a major transformation of Papuan land through food plantations. which has prompted loud objections from local people for years. A palm oil supplier continues to destroy of Papuan forests. Global Day of Action's free expression demands remain unfulfilled.

Protester at April 29 Global Day of Action on Access to Papua. Photo by Tapol.



Friday, May 1, 2015



On Wednesday, April 29, an international group of protesters gathered at the Indonesian consulate near Central Park in New York to call for an end to restrictions on access to West Papua. New Yorkers were joined by a number of West Papuans who were in New York for the UN's annual indigenous peoples' forum, as well as Indonesians, Australians, and Hawaiians, and others, to urged Presidents Jokowi Widodo to fulfill his promise to open the region.

Protesters leafletted and otherwise engaged passers-by and members of the consulate staff. Many of the protesters wore all-black clothing to symbolize the media blackout in Papua.

NYC #openpapua demonstration at Indonesian consulate 
 

The protest was organized by the East Timor and Indonesia Action Network (ETAN), as part of the Global Day of Action for Free and Open Access to Papua. The NYC protest was one of 22 in 10 countries, including Indonesia, Australia, England and the Solomon Islands. In the U.S., demonstrations also took place in Los Angeles and San Francisco.

ETAN also delivered a letter to the consulate and the Indonesian embassy in Washington, DC, asking "what is Indonesia hiding in West Papua?" The letter urges "the end to restrictions on access to Papua" and  says "the media blackout in Papua denies the Papuan people the right to have their voices heard and allows human rights violations such as killings, torture and arbitrary arrests to continue with impunity." It was organized by Tapol and signed by 52 Papuan, Indonesian and international groups and parliamentarians (including ETAN and the West Papua Advocacy Team).

"Why are there such heavy restrictions on access to West Papua?" asked John M. Miller, coordinator of ETAN. "Indonesia's President Joko Widodo should fulfill his promise to end the barriers to journalists, human rights investigators and humanitarian organizations working in the region."

West Papua is one of the world's most isolated conflict spots. For decades, indigenous activists campaigning for their rights have been arrested, disappeared, tortured and killed. Local journalists who uncover the truth face lethal risks. Foreign journalists trying to report on Papua have been arrested, deported, and even imprisoned. One by one, international humanitarian organizations have closed their Papua offices. Access for UN human rights observers has been closed for eight years. Until Indonesia lifts the repressive restrictions on access to Papua, Indonesian security forces and paramilitaries are free to act with total impunity, and indigenous Papuans will continue to be killed.

The East Timor and  Indonesia Action Network (ETAN) was founded in 1991. ETAN supports democracy, human rights and justice in Timor-Leste, West Papua and Indonesia. Website: www.etan.org Twitter: @etan009.


see also West Papua Report



Monday, April 20, 2015

Join #openpapua demonstration in 5 cities: NYC, London, Darwin, Perth, Edinburgh

Join #openpapua demonstration in 5 cities: NYC, London, Darwin, Perth, Edinburgh

Wednesday, April 29

Links are to each protest Facebook page

Darwin, Australia
protest details here: http://tinyurl.com/l3yqseh
April 29 2015, 12:00 noon, outside the Indonesian embassy. For us here in Perth the address is 134 Adelaide Terrace East Perth.

Perth, Australia protest details here: http://tinyurl.com/ohfcqnp
April 29 2015, 12:00 noon, outside the Indonesian embassy. For us here in Perth the address is 134 Adelaide Terrace East Perth.

New York, USA protest details here: http://tinyurl.com/khcw8nu
Wednesday, April 29,  6:00 pm,
Consulate General of the Republic of Indonesia
5 E 68th St, New York, NY 10065, New York, New York 10065

London, UK protest details here: http://tinyurl.com/nvkwqqg
Wednesday, April 29, at 12:00 noon
Indonesian Embassy 38 Grosvenor Square London W1
W1K 2 London, United Kingdom

Edinburgh, Scotland details protest here: http://tinyurl.com/nshfyrv
Wednesday, April 29, 12:00 noon at the Scottish Parliament, EH99 1SP



Wednesday, April 8, 2015

It's back! April 2015 West Papua Report

West Papua Report  April 2015


CONTENTS

This edition's Perspective is an interview with Octo Mote, General Secretary of the United Liberation Movement for West Papua, on the prospects for MSG membership.

In UPDATE (covering February and March) the West Papua Advocacy Team announces that it has awarded its 2015 "John Rumbiak Human Rights Defenders Award" to the people and government of Vanuatu. Security forces in Yahukimo District have fired on civilians who were raising funds for humanitarian relief in cyclone-ravaged Vanuatu, killing one and wounding four. Indonesia's Foreign Minister was dispatched to three Pacific island states to try to dampen growing support for West Papua's application to join the Melanesian Spearhead Group. Archbishop Tutu urged the United Nations to investigate the fraudulent "Act of Free Choice" through which Indonesia forcibly annexed West Papua. Rights groups have called for Indonesia to address outstanding human rights cases in West Papua. Four youths were beaten by security forces in Jayapura. Plans by Freeport to construct a smelter in Papua have not involved the Kamoro on whose land the smelter will be located. The Kamoro have long suffered from the effects of Freeport's mining operations.


In CHRONICLE, we note upcoming demonstrations in London and New York; an in-depth analysis of Jakarta's security approach to West Papua; an argument that human rights violations fuel Melanesian support for West Papuans, and a look at ongoing media restrictions.

Demonstrations to Call for Open Access to Papua #openpapua

Demonstrations to Call for Open Access to Papua

End 50 years of isolation and Support free and open access to Papua.

April 29, 2015, 6 p.m.

Indonesian Consulate, 5 E 68th St. (near 5th Ave.) in Manhattan
(take #6 train to 68 St.-Hunter College stop; N, R, Q to 5th Ave/59th St.)



On April 29, demonstrations will be held in London and New York calling for an end to 50 years of isolation and free and open access to Papua. (The London protest will take place at noon, outside the Indonesian embassy, 38 Grosvenor Square) the New York protest will begin at 6 pm at the Indonesian consulate in Manhattan. 

Tapol, which initiated the protests, is organizing the London demonstration. ETAN is organizing the one in New York. Additional events may be organized elsewhere.

West Papua is one of the world’s most isolated conflict spots. For decades, indigenous activists campaigning for their rights have been arrested, disappeared, tortured and killed. Local journalists who uncover the truth face lethal risks. Foreign journalists trying to report on Papua have been arrested, deported and even imprisoned. One by one, international humanitarian organizations have closed their Papua offices. Access for UN human rights observers has been closed for eight years. Until Indonesia lifts the repressive restrictions on access to Papua, Indonesian security forces and paramilitaries are free to act with total impunity, and indigenous Papuans will continue to be killed.

Demonstrators will be wearing all-black clothing to protest the media blackout in Papua. They will be carrying placards, some of which will be ‘censored,’ and have their mouths taped shut.

Contact ETAN (etan@etan.org) or 917-690-4321 for more info.