Forkorus and friends receive heroes’ welcome
(Bintang Papua)The chairman of DAP, the Papuan Traditional Assembly, Forkorus Yaboisembut, and five others who recently attended the public hearing at the US Congress arrived back on Papuan soil yesterday at Sentani Airport to a heroes’ welcome as if returning from the battle-field. On their
arrival, Forkorus and his group were welcomed by the Boy Eluay, the son
of Theys Eluay.
Troops from the Petapa security forces maintained a tight guard along
the way taken by Forkorus and the others. As they entered the airport
arrivals area, they were invited to step on a large china plate and
nokens [string bags] were draped round their necks [a ceremonial welcome
for special people] while the woman in the group had her head half
covered with a jilbab. The Petapa guard was closely maintained from the
arrivals area to the cars waiting outside. A group of musicians was also
there to welcome Forkorus and his colleagues. They then drove for 45
minutes to a specially constructed pendopo .
After prayers were said, Forkorus said that they had visited the US at
the invitation of the US Congress to attend a public hearing at the
Congress. He said that this was evidence that the US regards the Papuan
with respect and wants to build a new friendly relationship in order to
help the Papuan people.
Responding to negative remarks made by the US ambassador who said that
Papua is part of NKRI, he said that this was just a political
statement whereas all the arrangements for the group’s departure to the
US had been handled by the US embassy in Jakarta.
Herman Awom who also particiated in the visit to the US said that during
their presence at the congressional hearing, two other Papuans were
deliberately included by Indonesia, Franzalbert Yoku and Nikko Messet,
whose words describing Papuans as stupid and lazy were described as
regrettable by Eni Faleomavaega. a member of the US Congress.
Eni Faleomavaega said it was regrettable that Nikko Messet had said of
his own people that they were lazy and stupid.
It was also reported that Forkorus and his colleagues will repeat their
testimonies on the following day at the graveside of Theys Eluay.