Monthly Archives: January 2011

PNG troops burn down border West Papua refugee camps as refugees flee to the jungle

by Nick Chesterfield and local sources
westpapuamedia.info
January 28, 2011

Scenes of terror and destruction have erupted around Papua New Guinea’s frontier town of Vanimo, as an unprecedented and contentious PNG military operation against unarmed West Papuan refugees has arrested scores and burned over 30 houses to the ground.

79 people (28 Men, 24 Women and 27 Children) are currently being held in cramped and hot conditions at an interim processing facility outside the Vanimo Police Station, which has been taken over by police from Port Moresby after local police refused to cooperate.  Special taskforce Police are refusing to provide meals, which are having to be supplied by the local Vanimo catholic diocese, although there are no current allegations of mistreatment whilst in custody.

Nine men have been charged with unspecified charges relating to armed activities though refugee advocates have denied that these people are resident of the camps raided.  Enquiries by West Papua Media have found none have access to legal representation at this stage.

On January 23 at Blackwater refugee camp outside Vanimo, 19 houses were set on fire by Police and Soldiers from Port Moresby,  while residents were rounded up on trucks and taken to Vanimo Police Station.  According to a detailed witness report provided by the coordinator of West Papuan refugees living in Vanimo, Barias Jikwa, the operation began at 1:00 am local time when houses were surrounded, and houses began to be razed at 04:00 am.  Troops then used spades and guns to destroy the refugees’ food and edible crops.

Border Security Operation

Confusion and official intransigence has surrounded the border security Operation Sunset Merona. by PNG Defence Force (PNGDF), Police, Customs, and Foreign Affairs officials.  Troops from PNGDF’s 1st Royal Pacific Islands Regiment (1RPIR) flew in from Port Moresby in January under the command of Joint Forces Commander Jerry Frank together with out of area general
police officers from Boroko, Bomana, Gordons, and Waigani.  The elite and often notorious Mobile Brigade were not included in the operation, although human rights sources have drawn attention to the standard operating procedure of house burnings that Mobile Brigade have employed with squatters and landowners affected by mining and forestry.

Sunset Merona was originally announced as a law enforcement exercise to counter the illegal flow of goods across the border from Indonesian military (Tentara Nasional Indonesia or TNI) sources that were hurting indigenous PNG businesses, and to ensure there were no illegal workers within the logging companies from Malaysia and Indonesia operating at the PNG – West
Papua border.  Most shops in Vanimo are owned by non-Papuans, and all sell goods of non-PNG origin at marked up prices, but still vastly cheaper than PNG produced goods.  To date, there is no verifiable information that vendors of illegal goods have been caught up the security dragnet.

According to the West Papuan Refugee Relief Association (WPRRA) in Vanimo, a registered NGO, the raids were carried out “after a week of operation on the legal permits and identities of logging workers from Malaysia and Indonesia who spread across Vanimo, Madang and Wewak and besides logging activities, who also dominate the marketplaces of those provinces right now.”

The offensive, dubbed a politically motivated stunt by dissident members of PNG security forces, descended on remote border camps and villages and made arrests of logging workers and Indonesian military personnel, though it is believed these initial arrestees were released to make way for Refugee arrests after protest from Indonesian diplomatic representatives in Vanimo.
Up to 700 personnel are reportedly involved across PNG, though the joint force in Vanimo currently numbers only 150 personnel.

The offensive is exposing deep divisions in PNG security personnel, with several local security officers being stood down during the operation for “refusing to work for Indonesian interests”.  One security source who wished to remain anonymous said “This operation is a stunt; a political charade”.  He went on to further explain that the sudden change of tactic may have also been created by a hazy early January violent incident between Indonesian and PNGDF soldiers inside Batas, the vast TNI owned shopping complex just metres from the PNG border at Wutung.

After several weeks of rumours and uncertainty surrounding the true purpose of Sunset Merona, the operation has deteriorated into an offensive against Indonesia’s enemies in PNG, the West Papuan people.  “Once again, this stunt operation is deeply suspicious in its timing, with Indonesia currently engaged in a systematic sweep and terror campaign for nonviolent activists from Jayapura to the border.  The questions PNG people need to have answered is, are these two offensives working in conjunction with one another, and what kind of Melanesians are we to do the Jakarta’s work?”

In Yako village, 18 houses were burned down, and possessions and food gardens were systematically destroyed by troops.  Yako camp housed over 50 families forced out of Blakwara camp by threats from local landowners allegedly in league with Indonesian military linked logging interests.

A spokesperson for the Blakwara community, Yalli Jikwa, 39,  said “The arrest of villagers and burning of houses is a violation of our rights as refugees, and the PNG government must take responsibility for its actions.”

Also under attack were the villages of Dawi, Wara Duanda, Musu, Dasi, Warakarap, Ambas, Bebfsi and Skotchiou.  Houses have been confirmed razed at Dawi (4 houses), Bebfsi (3) and Musu (At least 4), with unconfirmed reports of every other village targeted having burnt houses.  Local human rights monitors are still attempting to confirm the situation in other villages.

There have been no confirmed reports to date that any person has been shot or any weapons discharged in these operations so far.  Some early allegations of severe mistreatment (beatings) in Blakwara and Yako, with over at least ten people still in the Vanimo Hospital currently being treated for their injuries.

Local human rights sources have reported that all villagers and refugees fled to the surrounding jungle prior to the raids,  and have not retaliated.  Amongst those fleeing were large numbers of guerrillas who have been asked by PNGDF to surrender,  but are so far ignoring the request.

The RPNGC commander of Joint Forces for Operation Sunset Merona, Jerry Frank, has described all the arrested people as separatists despite clear information that almost all refugees at the attacked camps had been registered as refugees and/or permissive residents for many years, and many were non political.

Radio NZ International has reported that PNG authorities have arbitrarily decided that anyone found not be a citizen of PNG will be considered an OPM activist and sent to East Awin refugee camp, which although overflowing, is under the control of the UNHCR and attended closely by Catholic relief agencies.  However, PNG’s acting deputy police commissioner Fred Yakasa
acknowledged that they cannot return refugees to Indonesia to face possible arrest or execution .  “It would be wrong to send those people back to Papua to an unknown fate,” Yakasa stated.  “We respect Indonesia and West Irian as an integral part of Indonesia and that respect is there and we just want to make sure no rebel activity or anything of that nature advances on our side of the border.”

Dissident police officers in Sandaun see it differently.  “Far from defending PNGs sovereignty, we are asking `how high’ before the TNI thugs even tell us to jump,” explained a senior security source in Sandaun on condition of anonymity.  “It is like somebody fears they lose out on their logging spoils”.

West Papuan refugees spoken with by West Papua Media also paint an entirely different picture to that put forward by Somare’s operation.  They have accused the Prime Minister Michael Somare of acceding to clandestine Indonesian demands, and acting preserve his alleged business interests with the Indonesian military.

“How dare he treat his own wantoks like this for the Indonesians.  We are not Indonesians, We are West Papuans, which is why we fled from the brutality of the Indonesian military year after year.  Our whole lives have been in limbo in Papua New Guinea, denied education, denied jobs, even when some of us have been welcomed as wantoks by good hearted PNG folk.  And now this criminal Somare is treating peaceful refugees like this just so he can please his bosses in Jakarta and  safeguard his retirement bilas (trinkets),”  said one elderly West Papuan refugee who was too angry to give his name when spoken to by West Papua Media by phone yesterday.

PM Somare recently stood aside pending investigation on corruption and official misconduct charges, but has quietly reinstated himself into the Prime Ministership functions with little protest from PNG political figures, many of whom also have documented involvement with Indonesian military business interests.  However this operation has been in planning for several months, with almost K2.5 million budgeted for a six week initial operation, with the possibility of extension.

Local Business Complexities
Refugee spokespeople have alluded to local business interests playing a significant role in the evictions, which local security sources have confirmed.  Most refugee camps targeted in this operation are surrounded by extremely valuable timber resources, and logging interests and national power politics are playing a significant part in the recent events.

The MP for Vanimo-Green River, Belden Namah, whose family traditionally provide refuge for both the OPM and refugees, has publicly condoned the harsh operations.  As the villages were being razed Namah issued a statement criticising the Sunset Merona personnel, not for their harsh treatment of civilians, but for allegedly encouraging local people to demand logging companies pay for timber they remove from forests. “This is very, very disgraceful,” Namah said, “It is a national disgrace for landowners to be told by security forces to set road blocks to collect road levies, when such infrastructures are national assets,” he said.

Under the PNG Constitution, Land belongs to the people, and it is not legally a national asset unless a specific act of Parliament has been enacted.  Under these provisions, resource companies must legally pay for compensation for land they damage and resources they expropriate.  Somare (and Namah) in June rammed through a change to the Environment and Conservation Act, but that is deemed by many in PNG to be unconstitutional.

“If they are targeting foreign workers for work permits, passports and other related documents, that is fine, but why are they encouraging the landowners to engage in actions that causes disruption and destructive to the smooth operations of companies in the area….. The security forces must concentrate on the core focus of the operation.”  Namah explained in his statement that this was to destroy OPM camps on the PNG side of the border.

At this point no allegations have been made to West Papua Media that Namah is influencing the operation, but as the local MP and a member of the Sandaun Provincial Security Committee, Namah is in a unique position to do so.   Ironically, Namah came to power on the back of a concerted social movement resisting Indonesian control of logging, helping to create the GVG Moma landowner controlled co-operative ensuring community control and veto over unsustainable logging. “Men, women and children have suffered for a very long time. The Government has abandoned its responsibility to the people, it seems. We must ensure that the benefits to the people are real and sustainable,” Namah explained in 2006.

Despite this, Namah is heavily involved as both a Forestry Minister, and an owner of major forestry businesses in Sandaun which have allegedly perpetrated serious environmental and social abuses against those opposed to unregulated clearance of old growth Papuan Jungle.  GVG Moma, which has increased its harvest since 2006 of highly valuable kwila/merbau, teak and other tropical hardwoods, are seeking to exploit the high value forest on which the refugee camps stand.  According to local security sources, GVG Moma are also currently utilising the same distribution and personnel networks as when the TNI directly controlled Vanimo Forest Products prior to 2006.   The former PNGDF Captain Namah, who was gaoled and pardoned for his leading role in the Sandline mercenary crisis, has attracted significant controversy during his time as Forestry Minster for accruing significant wealth and property across the Pacific.

West Papua analysts have long been concerned about the connection between illegal logging in the area and the Indonesian military business interests having the potential to extend the already serious human rights abuses in West Papua into PNG territory.   Wikileaks recently revealed cables from the US Embassy in Jakarta that accused Indonesian military officers of
deep involvement in illegal logging operations on both sides of the border. A 2006 cable details a briefing from a PNG government official reporting the TNI were ”involved in both illegal logging and drug smuggling in PNG”.

Local human rights and security sources are describing the atmosphere across Sandaun province as highly tense following the launch of the offensive.  Since before PNG independence, there has long been widespread sympathy and tolerance for given West Papuans forced to flee violence safe refuge in the country.  However, PNG also has a strong history of local businesses leaders working closely with Indonesian mercantile interests to clear refugees out of Sandaun, but this is the first time security forces in PNG have acted so blatantly in alliance with Indonesian policy of a military approach to rooting out West Papuan desires for independence.

Rumours are beginning to circulate that many ordinary people supporting West Papuans in Sandaun will take unspecified direct action to protest the treatment of their wantoks.

Local security forces refuse to co-operate.

Reports from security sources on the ground currently in Vanimo have confirmed to West Papua Media that soldiers from the local 2RPIR battalion were sidelined and local units of police were also refusing to cooperate with the operation.

The Provincial Commander of RPNGC in Sandaun Province, Sakuva Kasieng, was suspended by the RPNGC Commissioner for labelling the operation as politically motivated.  West Papua Media unsuccessfully attempted to reach Kasieng for comment.

A Memorandum of Understanding was signed in December between Kasieng and the representatives of the Free Papua Movement (OPM – Organisasi Papua Merdeka) based in Sandaun, to allow training of OPM forces in civil resistance techniques.  A senior intermediary for OPM units in the area who was responsible for the training, was not available for comment at time of
writing, nor to confirm whether the training was offensive and armed, or for nonviolent civil resistance tactics.  Regular civil resistance training  of refugees by activists and leaders within the nonviolent movement have been conducted for many  years in PNG.

However, refugees have categorically denied that any armed struggle or violence training had been conducted in, near, or with any members of the villages that were targeted by operation Sunset Merona.  “The accusation that these villages were National Liberation Army training bases is completely false. These villages attacked have no connection at all to the TPN, and Somare knows it,” explained Yalli Jikwa.

Security and local sources familiar with the MoU have alleged that a senior (and elderly) Papuan resistance figure was displeased with the training program, and allegedly provided a copy of the MoU to Indonesian Special Forces agents stationed at the Indonesian Consulate in Vanimo.  The sources described a subsequent surprise inspection by an Indonesian “consultant”
to Blakwara camp in mid-December as a catalyst that changed the officially tolerant PNG government attitude to the camps that has been in existence since 1963.

West Papua and security analysts across the Pacific have long feared that cross border “hot pursuit” operations carried by Indonesian troops may draw other countries into a regional conflict.  There is suspicion the TNI has pressured the PNGDF to act as its proxy to achieve its military objectives on neutralising the West Papuan resistance, and therefore avoid the potential for border violation.  However, both Jakarta and Waigani deny this.

The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs was unable to provide comment prior to deadline.

Uncertainty for Refugees already in Limbo

PNG is home to around 12,000 West Papuan refugees who have fled Indonesian state violence in several major waves since occupation began in 1962.  Several hundred refugees accepted facilitated repatriation last year with  guarantees of land, cash and non-persecution.   However the majority of refugees present say they have a well founded fear of persecution and cannot return.  Refugees are deemed by PNG as permissive non-citizens which enables them to work but not to gain any legal certainty in housing, education or as citizens.

The refugee relief NGO WPRRA are demanding that the PNG government are called to account for their “inhuman operations against refugees who took refuge in PNG due to the Indonesian brutalities”, and that the governments of Vanuatu, New Zealand and others assist these displaced West Papuan refugees to seek asylum in a third country.  WPRRA have also called on the international community to assist in “ensuring the fundamental rights of West Papuans in PNG are respected and protected according to the international law on refugees and human rights.”

The UNHCR is concerned about the attacks on refugees, and potential for inappropriate actions to escalate.  “Our PNG Representative is closely monitoring the situation and in contact with the relevant authorities to ensure the principle of non-refoulement is being respected as the situation becomes clearer,” said Richard Towle, Australia/ PNG Regional Representative for UNHCR.

westpapuamedia.info

Buchtar Tabuni complains to police chief about his treatment

LETTER OF COMPLAINT FROM BUCHTAR TABUNI TO THE CHIEF OF POLICE IN PAPUA

Police Isolation Cell, 18 January, 2011

To:
Police-General Bekto Suprapto,

With respect,

With regard to my detention in a police isolation cell for almost two
months, I wish to raise the following problems with the Chief of Police
in Papua:

1. Will the police in Papua explain what my status is, whether I am a
detainee (tapol) or a convicted political prisoner (narapidana). If I am
being held as a detainee in connection with the riot that occurred in
Abepura Prison on 3 December 2010, I ask to be given an arrest warrant
by the police for the period that I have been held in a police isolation
cell . And whether what I myself did together with Filep Karma at the
time of the riot was not in fact an attempt to calm things down while
trying to be a link between the prison officers and the prisoners who
were involved in the riot. If my status is that of a narapidana, I
hereby ask to be transferred to Abepura Prison Class IIA. This is
because being held in an isolation cell by the police in Papua has had
the following very damaging consequences for me:

a) My father, Jen Tabuni, who was 54 years old, passed away on
Sunday, 9 January 2011 in Papani Kampung, in the Papuan interior. The
cause of death was that, after hearing that I had been taken from a
police cell and thinking that I had been kidnapped, he suffered a
stroke, fainted and died. This was because there was no information
about my whereabouts after I had been separated and placed in an
isolation cell by the Papuan police, without any clear reason being
given for this;

b) Ever since being separated and held in an isolation cell of the
Papuan Police, I have not received any edible food and on some
occasions, I have not been given any food and drink at all, as a result
of which I have been drinking the water in the tub in the bathroom. The
lack of decent food and drink has given me serious gastric problems;

c) My body is turning yellow and I often feel giddy when I stand up.
This is because of the lack of sunlight, the lack of vegetables and
because the vegetables I do eat are boiled as a result of which I am
anaemic as well as suffering from gastritis which means that my health
is deteriorating.

2. If the police here in Papua fail to respond speedily to my
complaints, I will go on hunger strike until my complaints are dealt with.

Letter of complaint from:

Buchtar Tabuni

Papuan political prisoner

Buchtar Tabuni

AFP: Papuans Rally for Independence from Indonesia

Thousands of Papuans march in a rally in Jayapura on July 8, 2010 to urge the provincial parliament to demand a referendum on self-determination, and reject the region's special autonomy within Indonesia. (AFP Photo/Banjir Ambarita)

Hundreds of Papuans have protested in Jayapura rejecting the region’s special autonomy within Indonesia and demanding a referendum on self-determination.

Carrying a wooden coffin covered with a black cloth which said “Special Autonomy is Dead in Papua,” more than 1000 activists, students and church leaders protested on Wednesday in front of the provincial parliament, witnesses said.

“Independence for Papua, reject special autonomy,” they shouted.

“Indonesia the coloniser, Indonesia the oppressor, Indonesia the robber.”

They also called for the upper house of tribal leaders called the Papua People’s Assembly (MRP) to be disbanded.

“The MRP had done nothing to improve the welfare of Papuans. Our people are poor in their own land,” protest coordinator Selpius Bobi said.

“We reject special autonomy as that is the Indonesian government’s policy which has never supported the natives. We want a referendum that will allow us to determine our own fate,” he added.

Papua’s special autonomy status, introduced in 2001 after the fall of former president Suharto’s military dictatorship, has seen powers including control of most tax revenue from natural resources devolved to the provincial government.

However many Papuans say it has failed to improve their rights and activists accuse the Indonesian military of acting with brutal impunity against the indigenous Melanesian majority in the far-eastern region.

A court martial jailed three Indonesian soldiers on Monday for up to 10 months for abuse and insubordination after graphic video footage showed them torturing civilians in Papua.

The sentences were criticised by the United States and rights campaigners as too lenient.

Foreign media and aid workers are not allowed into Papua and West Papua provinces to investigate allegations of human rights abuses against the indigenous people.

Papua has been the scene of a low-level insurgency for decades and despite Indonesia’s vast security presence in the region, Jakarta remains extremely sensitive about any sign of separatism.

Indonesia has sent mixed messages about its willingness to loosen its grip on Papua, offering talks with separatist rebels on the one hand while jailing and killing their leaders on the other.
© 2011 AFP

AFP: U.S. Slams Indonesia Sentences in Papua Torture Trial

WASHINGTON, Jan. 26 (AFP) — The United States on Tuesday
slammed as too lenient an Indonesian court martial for jailing three
soldiers for up to 10 months for abuse and insubordination after
they were shown torturing civilians.

The sentences “do not reflect the seriousness of the abuses of
two Papuan men depicted in 2010 video,” State Department
spokesman Philip Crowley said on the microblogging website
Twitter.

“Indonesia must hold its armed forces accountable for violations
of human rights. We are concerned and will continue to follow
this case,” Crowley added.

The relatively light sentences prompted anger among campaigners,
who accuse the Indonesian military of acting with impunity
against the indigenous Melanesian majority in the far-eastern
province of Papua.

The military tribunal found the trio guilty of abuse and
disobeying orders, and sentenced Second Sergeant Irwan
Rizkiyanto to 10 months in jail, First Private Yakson Agu to
nine months, and First Private Tamrin Mahan Giri to eight months.

In footage posted on YouTube last year, the soldiers were seen
applying a burning stick to the genitals of an unarmed man and
threatening another with a knife as they interrogated them about
the location of a weapons cache.

HRW: Indonesia: Hold Abusers From Military Accountable

Human Rights Watch logo
Image via Wikipedia

Human Rights Watch (New York)

January 25, 2011

For Immediate Release

Indonesia: Hold Abusers From Military Accountable

More Than 100 Political Prisoners Held for Protesting Peacefully

(New York, January 25, 2011) – The Indonesian government should ensure
that soldiers responsible for abuses are appropriately prosecuted and
punished, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2011. The
January 24, 2011 verdict in a Papua military tribunal of eight to ten
months imprisonment for soldiers who engaged in torture was woefully
inadequate, Human Rights Watch said.

The 649-page report, Human Rights Watch’s 21st annual review of human
rights practices around the globe, summarizes major human rights
trends in more than 90 countries and territories worldwide. Over the
past 12 years, Indonesia, the report says, has made great strides in
becoming a stable, democratic country with a strong civil society and
independent media, but serious human rights concerns remain.

“Senior officials must both talk the talk and walk the walk on human
rights,” said Elaine Pearson, deputy Asia director at Human Rights
Watch. “The military should stop shielding its officers from
prosecution, and the government needs to hold abusers accountable.”

In July 2010, the US government lifted its ban on military assistance
to Kopassus, Indonesia’s elite special forces, despite continuing
concerns about its human rights record. Strong evidence of security
force involvement in torture emerged in 2010. Defense Minister Purnomo
Yusgiantoro pledged to suspend soldiers credibly accused of serious
human rights abuses, to discharge those convicted of abuse, and to
cooperate with their prosecution. But only a handful of cases made it
to military tribunals, and the charges did not reflect the gravity of
the abuses committed.

In October, a 10-minute cell phone video came to light that showed
Indonesian soldiers interrogating and brutally torturing two Papuan
men, Tunaliwor Kiwo and Telangga Gire. In the video, Kiwo screams as a
piece of burning wood is repeatedly jabbed at his genitals. After
pressure from foreign governments, the military finally held a
tribunal in Jayapura, Papua, in January. But it is only tried three of
six soldiers in the video – Second Sgt. Irwan Rizkiyanto, First Pvt.
Jackson Agu, and First Pvt. Thamrin Mahamiri of the Army’s Strategic
and Reserve Command (Kostrad) 753rd battalion – on military
discipline charges, rather than for torture. The three were sentenced
to ten months, nine months, and eight months respectively. Military
prosecutors only sought sentences of up to 12 months rather than the
maximum 30 months as allowed under the military criminal code.

Another torture case captured on video in 2010 involved several
soldiers kicking and beating villagers in Papua. Four soldiers from
the same Kostrad 753rd battalion were tried on military disciplinary
grounds and were sentenced only to five to seven months in prison. The
convictions are on appeal before the Surabaya high military tribunal.

These two cases were unusual in that the ill-treatment was captured on
video, but for years Human Rights Watch has documented serious human
rights violations in Papua for which soldiers have never been held to
account. Human Rights Watch called on the US to publicly clarify its
relationship with the Kostrad 753rd battalion and the individuals
involved in this incident, in order to ensure compliance with the
Leahy law.

“Rather than cooperating with civilian authorities and suspending the
soldiers involved as soon as the video appeared, the Indonesian
government has dragged its feet and reluctantly done the bare minimum
to try and make this go away,” said Pearson. “This is not the new and
improved army that the defense minister promised, but the same old
military impunity we’ve seen for decades in Indonesia.”

The government did little to curb attacks and discrimination against
religious, sexual, and ethnic minorities during 2010. On several
occasions, militant Islamic groups mobilized large groups of private
citizens and attacked places of worship of religious minorities.
Police frequently failed to arrest the perpetrators of the violence.

While Indonesia has vibrant media, throughout 2010 Indonesian
authorities invoked harsh laws to prosecute individuals who raised
controversial issues, chilling peaceful expression. Indonesia’s
criminal libel, slander, and “insult” laws prohibit deliberately
“insulting” a public official and intentionally publicizing statements
that harm another person’s reputation, even if those statements are
true. For instance, in early 2010, Tukijo, a farmer from Yogyakarta,
was sentenced to six months’ probation and a three-month suspended
prison sentence for criminal defamation after he argued with a local
official regarding a land assessment.

The government has imprisoned more than 100 activists from the
Moluccas and Papua for rebellion for peacefully voicing political
views, holding demonstrations, and raising separatist flags. In
August, the authorities arrested 21 Southern Moluccas activists in
Ambon and Saparua and charged them with treason for planning to fly
balloons and Southern Moluccas Republic flags during a visit by
President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

The country’s political prisoners include Filep Karma, 51, a Papuan
civil servant imprisoned for organizing a Papuan independence rally on
December 1, 2004, and Buchtar Tabuni, 31, a leader of the West Papua
National Committee, a Papuan independence organization that has grown
more radical since his imprisonment.

Government restrictions on access to Papua by foreign human rights
monitors and journalists imposed when Indonesia took over Papua in
1969 remained in place in 2010.

“By keeping the foreign media and rights organizations out of Papua,
the Indonesian government is all but admitting that serious abuses
persist,” Pearson said. “Ending those restrictions would be a first
step in reversing Papua’s downward spiral.”

To read Human Rights Watch’s World Report 2011 chapter on Indonesia,
please visit:
http://www.hrw.org/en/world-report-2011/indonesia

To read the Human Rights Watch World Report 2011, please visit:
http://www.hrw.org/en/world-report-2011

For more information, please contact:
In Perth, Elaine Pearson (English): +61-415-489-428 (mobile)
In Washington, DC, Sophie Richardson (English, Mandarin):
+1-917-721-7473 (mobile)
In Jakarta, Andreas Harsono (English, Bahasa Indonesia):
+62-815-950-9000 (mobile)