News from Papua: Autopsy of Ardiansyah suggests he was murdered; Papuans will cease to exist in 50 years time

Slightly abridged in translation by TAOL

JUBI, 20 August 2010

According to a police statement, the autopsy of the body of Ardiansyah
Matra’is has revealed that he was struck several blows before falling
into the water and drowning in Maro River, Merauke.

Police public relations officer Untung Yoga told journalists that
several of his teeth were missing and there were swellings in several
parts of his body, all of which were likely to have been the result of
his having been struck with a blunt implement.

However, the police official said, before concluding the the victim had
been murdered, a further investigation would take place at the forensic
laboratory in Makassar.

The autopsy results confirm what members of his family said, namely that
there were unexplained things about his body when it was lifted out of
the river, in particular marks around his neck indicating that he had
been tortured and swellings in several parts of the body.

Investigations by the journalists organisation, AJI, conclude that he
left home at around 13.00 on the day he was reported missing. He
apparently met someone and may have spent about three hours with that
person but he never returned home afterwards. His car was found near
the location of the incident with no signs of having been damaged at
around 16.00. But several truck drivers who went back and forth across
the bridge (over the river) say they saw the vehicle at 16.00, which was
later removed at around 18.00 but was brought back to the original place
where it was found

A spokesman for the Alliance of Journalists AJI, Victor Mambor, said
that the police should immediately investigate who it was who murdered
Ardiansyah, adding: ‘It is highly likely that his murder is connected
with the terror situation for journalists which was occurring at the
time of Ardiansyah’s death, aimed at creating a tense situation in
Merauke.’ According to AJI, a week before Ardiansyah went missing, a
person who was not known to his family visited him several times and
spoke with him.


JUBI, 18 August 2010

Papuans will no longer exist in 50 years time

An Arso community leader, Tyam Tua, believes that in fifty years’ time,
the Papuan people will have ceased to exist

‘This is because the forests that are the source of their everyday
livelihood will have been completely cut down,’ he said

The development that is now underway does nothing to safeguard the
welfare of the Papuan people, he said.

Pastor John Djonga also holds the same views. ‘If the government and the
TNI continue to pursue their present policies, the Papuans will have
disappeared and all that will remain is the name. The many killings of
hundreds of indigenous people mean that they will not last more than
fifty years,’ he said.

‘Also, the felling of trees such as has been happening in Arso and
their replacement with palm oil plantations will make it very difficult
for the local people to make a living and stay alive.’

Though no reliable data is available, it is thought that the total
number of Papuans is around one and a half million.

Pastor John Djonga is also quoted as saying that the situation in Papua
is still under threat, with discrimination against the Papuan people
happening in all fields.

They suffer discrimination in education and in health. ‘Special autonomy
should have stopped this from happening,’ he said.

The Papuans are also being marginalised and elbowed out by non-Papuans.

He went on to say that the churches are struggling to overcome these
problems but they are accused of being separatists. ‘All we are doing is
trying to put an end to the many wrong things that are happening,’ he said.

It also happens when people are recruited for the civil service.
‘Discrimination is very clear and it is occurring to this very day.’