by Benny Mawel , Editor : Victor Mambor
January 6th, 2013
A spokesperson for the West Papua National Committee (KNPB) has claimed that the detention of a number of KNPB activists and the addition of more KNPB members’ names to the Wanted Persons List has been done purely in the interests of the Papuan political elite.
KNPB stated that the political elite, along with the Regional Police Chief, are trying to place the blame activists and the broader Papuan community [for the lack of democracy].
“Papuan police are suppressing democracy in order to favour the Papuan political elite. It is in the elite’s interest that the people of Papua are being victimised. Many members of society and of KNPB have had their names added to the Wanted Persons List,” KNPB’s spokesperson Wid Medlama said during a press conference on Saturday (5/1), at the Cafe Prima Garden, Abepura, Jayapura, Papua.
KNPB are urging the Regional Police Chief to free a number of KNPB activists and remove their names from the Wanted Persons List. “Clear the names of all KNPB members and activists from the wanted list, and free those detained without clear evidence,” Wim said.
According to the KNPB, the people of Papua wish to have the freedom to fulfil their aspirations and to go about their lives without anyone having to suffer. Space for the people to express themselves collectively must be made available by the government. Without this space, the government cannot talk about a ‘democratic country’ or a ‘democratic society’.
“A democratic space is needed for the people of Papua. Without it, there is no point in [calling ourselves] a democratic nation. What is the meaning of becoming a democratic nation if there is no democracy for the people?” added Hakim Pahabol, a member of the West Papua National Parliament.
(Translated by West Papua Media translators)
- Victor Yeimo: 22 Members of KNPB killed in 2012 (westpapuamedia.info)
- Victor Yeimo and others arrested as police crackdown on December 1 protests in Jayapura (westpapuamedia.info)
- Andreas Harsono: Is Repression Against KNPB Legal? (westpapuamedia.info)
- KNPB: ‘When one is shot dead, a thousand will rise up!’ (westpapuamedia.info)
- Ruben Magay : KNPB is not a terrorist group (westpapuamedia.info)
- Densus 88 shoot and arrest KNPB leaders near Wamena as tensions rises (westpapuamedia.info)
- KNPB leader reportedly resurfaces after disappearing upon release from police detention (westpapuamedia.info)
- KNPB activist, Klismon Woi dies from his injuries after mysterious shooting (westpapuamedia.info)