Two Papuans arriving to attend congress in Jayapura are arrested

Bintang Papua, 9 October 2011Jayapura: About two thousand people intending to attend the Third Papuan People’s Congress due to open on 16 October have already arrived in Jayapura from other parts of Papua. Some arrived by plane  while the majority travelled here by ship. The police have taken measures to guard the roads leading into Jayapura by examining all  passengers who arrive aboard the white ships.

All passengers who alight from the ships are subjected to sweepings undertaken by the police. A delegation from Serui was also subject to investigation. Ten people were taken into custody. After being interrogated, eight were released while two were held. The two who were held, Noak Kandipi and Henok Dorri, were found to be in possession of sharp implement in violation of the law.

The chief of police of Papua confirmed these arrests, saying that they were carrying weapons without the necessary permit.

The chairman of the congress organising committee, Selpius Bobii described this as an action of terror against Papuans arriving from outside who were coming to attend the congress.

‘Their aim is to warn delegates from other parts of the country against coming to Jayapura to attend the congress.’  he said.speaking at a press conference held at the office of the Dewan Adat Papua. He called on the army and the police not to arrest people and damage the programme of the congress, saying that this was very dangerous indeed. ‘We call on the police to release the two people immediately,’ he said. He also called  on all Papuans not to be provoked by issues that are being launched to damage harmonious relations with the community.

A member of the monitoring and advocacy team express his deep regrets that emergency laws were being used in a part of the country which was not in a state of emergency. ‘Moreover,’ he said, ‘people coming from the kampungs know absolutely nothing about these laws.’ He said that the monitoring team would assist the two and said that they did not know whether the two had been designated as suspects.

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