Tuesday, July 5, 2011

West Papua Report July 2011 now out!

Read it here


U.S. Congressmember Eni Faleomavaega has been named the 2011 winner of the John Rumbiak Human Rights Defenders Award. The award is given annually by the West Papua Advocacy Team (WPAT) to an individual or organization who has made significant contributions to the defense of human rights in West Papua. Congressmember Faleomavaega has long been active in the defense of human rights in West Papua, using his influential position in the U.S. House of Representatives to advance justice, good governance and development in West Papua. Thousands of workers at the Freeport McMoran mining complex in West Papua have gone on strike over wages, the firing of the union's leaders, and other Freeport union-busting efforts. The strike takes place at a time of continued security concerns arising in part from the recent murder of two senior Papuan Freeport officials, possibly with military involvement. 

Papuan human rights organizations and religious groups have called on the Government of Indonesia to address issues of injustice arising from security force assaults on Papuans and also to protect human rights defenders and journalists from attacks by security forces. An Indonesian government minister's visit to West Papua signals that a widely criticized development plan in the Merauke area is moving forward. Tapol notes that there has been no indication that Papuans whose lands will be seized for the project will be compensated. Amnesty International has appealed on behalf of a Papuan who was beaten by military personnel. Melanesian human rights and youth groups have issued an appeal on behalf of five Papuan youths detained since December 2010 for their roles in a peaceful protest. The Australian West Papua Association (AWPA) has called for Pacific Island Forum leaders to include the plight of West Papua on the agenda for their September 2011 meeting. The AWPA message also offers a harsh critique of Jakarta's "special autonomy" policy.