An Agribusiness Attack in West Papua: Unravelling the Merauke Integrated Food and Energy Estate


April 25, 2012

Announcing the publication of a new report into a major land grab in West Papua:

“An Agribusiness Attack in West Papua: Unravelling the Merauke
Integrated Food and Energy Estate” is now online at:
(direct pdf download: )


The Merauke Integrated Food and Energy Estate (MIFEE) is a vast mega-project, a plan for over a million hectares of plantations and industrialised agriculture that threatens the people and environment across the southern part of West Papua. Indonesian and foreign companies have each claimed their share of the land, and offer the local Malind people next-to-nothing in exchange for the forest that has sustained them for countless generations.

West Papua, where the MIFEE project is set to take place, is a conflict zone. The Papuan people have been struggling for decades for their freedom and self-determination. West Papua is also the next frontier for Indonesia’s plantations industry – after Sumatra and Borneo’s forests have been decimated for the pulp and oil-palm industries, now Papua becomes the target. Although some plantations already exist, MIFEE represents another order of magnitude, opening the floodgates to development projects across Papua in which the losers will be the Papuan people.

awasMIFEE! has been created as an act of solidarity with the social and ecological struggles of the people of Merauke and elsewhere in West Papua. We believe that it is important that people outside of West Papua also know what is happening in Merauke. However, information available about MIFEE can be confusing – much of it comes from different companies and government bodies, and each have their own way of describing the project that fits with their own interests and objectives.

By compiling information from different sources, such as reports from the villages affected, from NGOs and other groups, from Papuan, Indonesian and financial media, from local and national government, and from company websites, we have tried to unravel what MIFEE is likely to mean for the people of Merauke. We hope that a more coherent understanding of how this land grab is taking shape will be of interest to people who are interested in West Papua, in the defence of forests and forest peoples, in the struggles against agro-fuels and against the growth of industrialised agriculture.

Most of all we hope that this information can be the catalyst for action! Our initiative is independent, unconnected to the programs of any NGO, and we hope it can also be a source of inspiration.

The report “An Agribusiness Attack in West Papua : Unravelling the
Merauke Integrated Food and Energy Estate” is an attempt to give an
overview of the situation in April 2012. It focusses on the following areas:

  • Background information – to understand MIFEE in the context of West
  • Papua, it’s history and struggles, and the local Malind people.
  • What is MIFEE – how MIFEE presents itself as the answer to Indonesia’s food security needs. But is it actually just an excuse for oil palm and logging companies to conquer new territory? A look at the difference between the propaganda and the reality of development in Merauke.
  • Reports from villages: A summary of news of what has been happening on the ground around the MIFEE project area, compiled from reports of NGOs that have visited the area, local media and letters sent from villagers.
  • Company Profiles: Tracing where the money comes from behind each proposed plantation.
    • Which of Indonesia’s top business conglomerates are involved?
    • How South Korean companies have been buying up plantations.
    • How Australia’s top-selling sugar brand is connected to forest destruction in Papua.

News of further developments will be posted on the website, and from
time to time updates containing news of all recent developments will be published.

[awasMIFEE minta ma’af karena versi Bahasa Indonesia belum siap. Laporan masih dalam proses terjemahan. Semoga dalam waktu dekat kami akan menerbit versi Bahasa Indonesia]

Amungme leader warns Freeport it could be closed down

”]JUBI, 19 January 2012

In view of the fact that there has been no response from Freeport -Indonesia or Freeport McMoran, ‘I, Anthonius Alomang, as executive-director of Lemasa, the Association of Amungme tribal people, herewith warn Freeport in Mimika district that we may close you down.’

‘As director of Lemasa, I declare on this day that we will close Freeport down,’ Alomang told a group Amungme people, addressing them at the meeting hall in Mile 32, Kuala Kencana, Timika.

He said that this was not just a joke but a very serious matter because already more than a month has elapsed without the Freeport management making any response to the statement issued by Tom Beanal, the Torei Negel.

The reason why a statement was made by the Torei Negel himself, said Alomang, speaking before representatives of the Kamoro Tribe and other tribes in Papua as well as representatives of various Indonesian groups in Mimika, is that ever since Freeport has been present here, what has been happening is quite unacceptable to the people who hold customary rights to the land.

The people who were already poor and have become even poorer, and they have seen that there has been not a shred of compassion in the practices towards the local people. This includes murders by unaccountable groups as well as corruption practised by the Freeport management who have never been called to account for all this.

As previously reported by Jubi on 7 December last year, the Torei Negel, Tom Beanal issued a nine-point statement expressing his attitude regarding the ten crucial issues that have been experienced by the Amungme people ever since PT-FI first arrived in Mimika.

Yet, up to this day, there has been no response whatever from the management of Freeport or from McMoran.

But no details are yet available about what these measures might be.

SBS: Indonesia attacking Papuans: claim

19 Dec 2011
By Stefan Armbruster
Download Episode Duration00:03:09 Download2MB
POLRI GEGANA anti-terrorism troops attacking peaceful flagraisers, Taokou Village, East Paniai , December 1 (West Papua Media)

A Papuan human rights group says Indonesian helicopters have been strafing villages, killing more than a dozen people and displacing up to 25,000 others, in their latest operation against the Free Papua Movement, or OPM.

Indonesian media has reported clashed between OPM fighters and the police and military – known as TNI – in the past week in the troubled province.

West Papuans have been seeking independence since Indonesia invaded in 1962, at the end of 130 years of Dutch colonial rule.

Stefan Armbruster spoke with the director of the Institute of Human Rights Study and Advocacy in the Papuan city of Jayapura, Ferry Marisan.

Download Episode Duration00:03:09 Download2MB

More Brutal Footage emerges from Congress crackdown

Fresh footage has emerged from last month’s brutal crackdown by Indonesian security forces on the Third Papuan People’s Congress in Abepura on October 19.

SBS Television broadcast the following footage which was also sent to West Papua Media.  The footage shows plain clothes and uniformed security personnel shooting hundreds of rounds into the crowd, beating and brutalising scores of participants, and violently attacking the elected President of the West Papuan Transitional Government, Forkorus Yaboisembut.

West Papua Media has also been provided with the remainder of the Congress footage through a source inside West Papua (via Tapol/ Down to Earth).  We have decided to make this available for the use of all media.  Please spread  widely.  Please be aware this contains images of extreme Indonesian state violence against unarmed civilians.


MEDIA NOTE:  For access to this original footage, please visit the contact page on this site and send an email or contact the number.

The world is watching Papua: Greens

Posted on 19. Oct, 2011 by RichardDiNatale in Media ReleaseWest Papua

The Australian Greens today urged the Indonesian authorities to show restraint at the 3rd Papuan National Congress in Jayapura, and warned them that the world is watching what occurs.

“The Congress is a peaceful event, and the Papuan people have a right to assemble and discuss their future,” said Greens West Papua spokesperson, Senator Richard Di Natale, from the Australian Parliament today. “To meet without threat of violence is a fundamental human right that all citizens enjoy.”

The Senator’s remarks were in response to reports that a heavy police and paramilitary presence was converging on Taboria Oval, the site of the Congress, and that violence seemed imminent.

“No level of violence is acceptable at a peaceful gathering,” added Senator Di Natale. “The authorities will have to answer to the world for any bloodshed.”

Media contact: Andrew Blyberg 0457 901 600

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