“Papuans do not feel safe in their own land” – Faith Based Network holds forum in Geneva

from the Faith-based Network on West Papua

Newsletter, March 2012

On 15 March, the Faith-based Network on West Papua (FBN) in cooperation with Franciscan International (FI), the Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC), the World Organization against Torture (OMCT) and TAPOL held a side-event at the Human Rights Council in Geneva.

National and international human rights experts discussed the implementation of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) recommendations from 2008 in Indonesia with regard to the human rights reality in Papua. Four years after the Indonesian Government accepted the UPR recommendations, the human rights experts observe no significant changes in the protection of human rights violations on the ground.

“Many Papuans do not feel safe in their own land”, said Rev. Matheus Adadikam, General Secretary of the Evangelical Church in the Land of Papua (GKI-TP). Extrajudicial executions, torture, arbitrary arrest and detention remain a reality for the indigenous people of Papua.  Ferry Marisan, Director of the Institute of Human Rights Studies and Advocacy (ElsHAM Papua), reported 75 people tortured and three killed by the Indonesian security forces after the 3^rd Papuan Peoples Congress in October and over 1.000 refugees caused by a military operation in Paniai Regency in December 2011.

Norman Voss, from the Asian Legal Resource Center (ALRC), drew a bleak conclusion of the UPR recommendations in Indonesia. “The implementation of the 2008 recommendations is very disappointing”, the international human rights expert said. The initial momentum of the so-called “Reformasi” with its improved human rights legislation had gone. There is no accountability for human rights violations in Papua and also no remedy for the victims, Norman Voss explained.

Novel Matindas, from the Papua Desk of the Communion of Churches in Indonesia (PGI), supported these observations and criticized the lack of political will from the Indonesian government to implement the Special Autonomy Law for Papua. The PGI therefore requests a dialogue between Papua and Jakarta to find the “best solution” for the ongoing problems.
For more information on the Faith-based Network on West Papua: http://www.faithbasednetworkonwestpapua.org or contact fbn_papua@vemission.org

Related News

*World Council of Churches expresses concern over human right violations in Tanah Papua*

The World Council of Churches (WCC) Executive Committee recently issued a statement expressing concern over the escalation of violence in Tanah Papua, Indonesia. <http://www.faithbasednetworkonwestpapua.org/news_release/world_council_of_churches_expresses_concern_over_human_right_violations_in_tanah_papua>

*Concerns of JPIC in Papua regarding the situation in Papua*

The secretariats of JPICs in Papua confirm that the pro-investment policy of the Government of Indonesia and the torture and cruel treatment by the security forces have undermined law and the dignity of the indigenous Papuans, marginalising and threatening their right to life. <http://www.faithbasednetworkonwestpapua.org/news_release/concerns_of_jpic_in_papua_regarding_the_situation_in_papua__reflections_on_the_situation_in_2011_>

*Statement: Torture and extrajudicial execution still take place in Papua*

FI, FBN and TAPOL would like to draw the attention on torture and extrajudicial execution still taking place in Papua. <http://www.faithbasednetworkonwestpapua.org/userfiles/files/Item3-General%20debate-joint%20statement-FI-FBN-Tapol-West%20Papua%20%282%29.pdf>

*Joint Press Release*

The Jayapura State Court found five Papuan leaders guilty of treason, sentencing them to three years imprisonment. <http://www.faithbasednetworkonwestpapua.org/userfiles/files/Joint%20Press%20Release%20on%20Verdict%20%282%29.pdf>

*Urgent Appeal: Joint Letter to Mrs. Sekaggya*

Dear Mrs Sekaggya, We are writing to you in relation to threats made against human rights lawyer Mr Gustav Kawer by the Public Prosecutor’s Office in Jayapura. <http://www.faithbasednetworkonwestpapua.org/news_release/urgent_appeal>

*Papua Update*

A Statement to the Human Rights Sub-Committee of the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade, House Representatives of Australia Canberra. <http://www.faithbasednetworkonwestpapua.org/userfiles/files/BH%20paper%20for%20ozi%20joint%20committee_2012%20%282%29.pdf>

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