West Papua

SAMPARI 2016: artworks, poetry, cartoons, climate talk, film, melanesian culture

The main aim of the exhibition is to raise awareness of the West Papuan peoples wish for independence and right to self-determination.

Indonesian push for education about Papua history

RNZ reports the newly-established Indonesian People's Front for West Papua, or FRI West Papua, this week declared its support for West Papuan liberation from Indonesian rule.

Made up of non-Papuans, the group said that the universal right to self-determination was denied in the case of West Papua.

Its spokesman Surya Anta says Indonesians are not well educated about what he calls the illegitimate takeover of Papua.

Solomons won't enter media duel with Jakarta

Indonesia's Defence Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu has urged Australia to pass on a message to Pacific Island governments to not interfere in Indonesian domestic affairs.

In media comments in the past week, he pressed Canberra to rebuke Pacific states, in particular Solomon Islands, for raising Papua in global forums and inviting Papuans to join the Melanesian Spearhead Group.

The Solomons' envoy on West Papua, Rex Horoi, said his government won't respond to what is effectively a media statement.

West Papua resources fray discussed alongside climate

'At the Intersection: Pacific Climate Change and Resource Exploitation in West Papua' runs for two days, hosted by Western Sydney University and the University of Sydney's West Papua Project.

The keynote speaker is Vanuatu's Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Ralph Regenvanu. Others attending include climate change scientists and West Papuan analysts.

The conference has been organised by Dr Cammi Webb-Gannon from Western Sydney University who said climate change and pernicious resource extraction in West Papua had a deep connection.

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Jakarta urged to open up on Papua

Several days ago, leaders of a number of Pacific Island countries raised concern at the UN general assembly about alleged human rights abuses against West Papuans.

West Papua remains a part of Indonesia: PNG Govt

This follows the attendance of the PNG delegation led by Foreign Affairs Minister, Rimbink Pato, to the United Nations General Assembly meeting where several Pacific Island nations raised the West Papua issue.

Minister Pato responded, during a media conference today, saying that PNG’s position has been clear as announced during various regional meetings.

“We have a very strong relationship with government and people of Indonesia, we have a whole range of agreements and treaties that govern our relationship,” said Pato.

Indonesia accuses Pacific countries of interference

RNZ reports the accusation during the UN General Assembly came after leaders from six Pacific countries - Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Nauru, the Marshall Islands and Tuvalu - expressed concern about human rights abuses in Papua.

Calls for Papuan self-determination rights to be respected were also made by some of the leaders during this 71st session of the general assembly debate.

"Human rights violations in West Papua and the pursuit for self-determination of West Papua are two sides of the same coin," said the Prime Minister of Solomon Islands, Manasseh Sogavare.

More arrests of Papuans planning to rally

Over the weekend 21 members of the West Papua National Committee, or KNPB, were arested by police in Yakuhimo regency as they distributed leaflets about a planned peaceful rally to be held today.

KNPB Chairman, Victor Yeimo, said the rally was to show support for the Pacific countries who are members of the Pacific Islands Coalition on West Papua.

The Coalition plans to raise issues of human rights abuses in West Papua, and Papuans' self-determination struggle, at the United Nations General Assembly.

Pacific leaders say little on Papua

A year ago Pacific leaders at their annual talkfest agreed to send a fact-finding mission to Papua to investigate allegations of human rights abuse.

But Indonesia was against it so the Pacific Islands Forum mission to Papua never happened.

At this year's Forum summit in Pohnpei alleged human rights abuses in Papua still featured in the communique but there is no commitment to try and do anything specific about it.

However Joe Collins of the Australia West Papua Association told Don Wiseman that this is still better than most recent years at the Forum summit.

Forum called out for hollow talk on Papua

RNZ reports following last week's Forum leaders summit in Pohnpei, regional civil society groups have voiced disappointment at what they see as a lack of any outcome or substance on the issue of West Papua.

Papua had been one of the big regional issues identified by the Forum secretary-general Dame Meg Taylor as being on the leaders' agenda, ahead of the summit.

However in the end, leaders merely concluded that the issue of alleged human rights violations in West Papua should remain on their agenda.