He said that everyone knows about that historic moment, including Lambert Pekikir and his colleagues, and he hoped that they would do nothing to damage the significance of that day.
‘Brother Lambert knows all about the importance of that day and he is obliged not to do anything that would damage that anniversary. Nothing should be done to turn that day in a day of violence and blood-letting.’
He said that the day marked an event of political importance and if anyone wants to celebrate it, they should do so by peaceful means and out of mutual respect. ‘Treat that day as an important political moment (for dialogue) and not for anything involving firearms.’
Thaha went on to say that the declaration of independence on that day had opened the eyes of the world to two facts.
‘Firstly,the Papuan people could not accept the political decision taken by the UN with regard to the Act of Free Choice and rejected Resolution 2504 which clealy failed to treat the Papuan people as the subject, and secondly, that the Papuan people have their aspirations which differ from those expressed in the UN resolution. ‘It was on 1 July,’ he said, ‘that the Papuan people gave their reaction to the UN decision of 1969 which legalised Papua’s incorporation as part of Indonesia.’
Thaha also said that he hoped that the security forces would adopt the persuasive approach , to seek to build mutual trust and avoid military operations.
He sad that the Papuan people and in particular the people in Jayapura are utterly worn out by the situation of fear. ‘The Papuan people dont want to go on living in an atmosphere of fear. Papuan people are tired of living like this,’ he said.
He went on to say that a peaceful situation of mutual respect for constructive dialogue must be the way forward to resolve all the problems in Papua. ‘A political solution to reveal the reality of our past history must be achieved by peaceful means,’ he said. ‘Violence can only lead to people getting injured and to yet more violence.’
My message is: ‘Stop all the violence and let us enter into dialogue.’
[Translated by TAPOL]