Jakarta-Papua dialogue should be held quickly, says commentator

JUBI, 22 June 2012

In the view of the political commentator Frans Maniagasi, the Indonesian government should hold a dialogue with the Papuan people as quickly as possible, in line with the policy of the Papuan Peace Network (JDP). He said this is very urgent indeed because Papuan lives are continuing to be lost.

‘The dialogue for which Pastor Neles Tebay has been working must be held as quickly as possible, ‘ he said, during a ceremony marking environmental day in the province of Papua.

He said that more and more Papuan lives are being lost, stressing that this has been going on for a very long time, since the 1960s.

The dialogue should discuss the emancipation of the  Papuan people. ‘This is a struggle for emancipation,’ said Maniagasi, who recently published a book called ‘Papua’s Future: Freedom, Special Autonomy and Dialogue.’

He said he realised that  the various stages of dialogue would encounter many difficulties because of the  problems among the Papuan people themselves.’The Papuan people consist of a number of tribes and cultures.’

But he said that these  differences could be overcome. ‘The question is – do we want to work together or not? ‘The most important thing is for us to sit down together, to discuss and to work together to push for the dialogue.’

“The Indonesian Government Occupies, Colonises and Marginalises Indigenous Papuans”

by Socratez Sofyan Yoman

translation by WestPapuaMedia from SuaraPapua.com

April 3, 2012


(“…thousands of young Papuans that scream against the impartiality, hope the regional government must be aware that the Special Autonomy Law is present for whom? That the Law was created for what? Because of the demands for Independence “to free themselves from The Republic of Indonesia” for the people of Papua.” (Dr. “HC” Herman A. T. Yoku, SIP, Cenderwasih Post and Papua Star, Friday 30/3/2012).

Noble and respected Opinion readers, in my Opinion piece on the topic ‘The Indonesian Government fails to Develop and Protect Indigenous Papuans’, that was published in the Pacific Post, Tuesday 20th March 2012, and in the Papua Star, Thursday 22nd March, 2012, I quoted the promise and commitment by the Government of Indonesia for indigenous Papuans when Papua was forcibly integrated into Indonesia in 1969 with the engineering of the 1969 Referendum.

The quote is as follows: “Interior Minister stated …. the government of Indonesia, is willing and able to protect the welfare of the people of West Irian, therefore, there is no other choice but to live with the Republic of Indonesia” (Source: United Nations Official Records: 1812th Plenary Meeting of the UN Assembly, agenda item 98.19 November 1969, paragraph 18, P.2). After 31 years from 1969 to 2000, the Government of Indonesia made a promise and commitment that is almost the same, in Act No. 21, Year 2001 on Special Autonomy, for: pemberdayaan (empowerment), perlindungan (protection) and keberpihakan (affirmative action) for the original inhabitants of Papua and the Papuan People that have been forced to live within the Republic of Indonesia.

But the reality is that the people of Papua, Indigenous Papuans and the owners of this land and country, are treated inhumanely and are slaughtered like animals in the name of Indonesia. A concrete example: Three Indigenous Papuans were shot dead by security forces on 19th October 2011 at Zakheus field, the shooters were only given disciplinary punishment. This betrayal of human dignity cannot be tolerated in a context of humanity. There is no reason to kill people. It is the toughest crime committed by the state.

Examples of other facts such as the Cenderwasih Post reported: at the Offical Echelon Inauguration at Keerom District, Community Leader from the Indonesia-PNG border, Keerom, Dr. (HC), Herman A.T.Yoku, S.IP, said: “Many young Indigenous Papuans are treated like step-children in the appointment into the echelons. From 117 new Echelon II, III and IV officials inaugurated a few days ago, if carefully calculated, the number of local young people inaugurated is less than 10, from all of those sworn in. I had hoped that affirmative policy that was mandated in Act No. 21, Year 2001 would necessarily be considered by the local government…’ (Cenderawasih Post, Friday, March 30, 2012, p. 14). “As young Papuans the Governor should be aware that the Special Autonomy Act is for who? At the Echelon Inauguration yesterday (Thursday, 29/3/2012) I have not seen one Papuan child sworn in, let alone one Indigenous Keerom child from this country. I am very sorry as a community leader who fights to expand this area – why is it that the governor can’t pay attention to this area? If for only one interest I requested this position, it is that this region can be considered safe because young indigenous Papuans say themselves it is safe.” (Papua Star, on Friday, March 30 2012, p 5).

In my opinion columns about The Special Autonomy Act No. 21, Year 2001, I continually, frankly and openly present the topic (1) “Special Autonomy has failed in Papua”: Papua Star, Thursday, 09/02/2012, p.5; (2) “It’s Time: Papua People Stand Alone”: in The Pacific Post, March 13, 2012 and Papua star, March 16, 2012; (3) “The Indonesian Government fails to Develop and Protect Indigenous Papuans” in the Pacific Post, Tuesday, March 20, 2012 and Papua Star, Thursday , March 22, 2012.
“Special Autonomy is a political solution or a political bargaining between the peoples of Papua and Indonesia, in order that Papuans remain in Indonesia with a guarantee to protect the people of Papua, the empowerment of indigenous Papuans, and affirmative action for indigenous Papuans. However, “in reality, the Special Autonomy has truly failed. Special Autonomy has truly become a killing machine of God’s people in Papua and a destroyer of a future Papuan society and nation.”

Special Autonomy has really become a potent tool for the process of ethnic cleansing in Papua that is safer, quicker, more systematic and does not raise the suspicions of the international community that cares about humanity. Special Autonomy is an institution that prolongs the agony, drops and flow of tears of Indigenous Papuans. Special Autonomy is a solution and political decision about Papua’s political status within Indonesia that has already failed. Special Autonomy is a destroying machine that really marginalises Indigenous Papuans from every aspect. Special Autonomy is second volume of the 1969 Referendum that has already failed and become a new problem.”

Herman Yoku says: “… i am very sorry as a public figure who fights to expand this area – why is it that the governor can’t pay attention to this area?” From this statement it seems evident that many Indigenous Papuan Officials do not have the critical ability in relation to the strategies and traps set by the Indonesian Government around the expansion of districts and provinces over the land of Papua. I regret very much, the way of looking and thinking of young Indigenous Papuan officials that the expansion of districts, cities and provinces are the result of hard work and struggle. It really is not like that.

The real background of the hectic expansion of districts, cities and provinces over the land of West Papua that is wild and uncontrollable, is purely political, economic, security, and a structural and systematic process of ethnic cleansing of Melanesians. And all the political policies of the Indonesian Government are not interested in progressing, advancing and increasing the welfare of Indigenous Papuans. In my opinion, the key clause in the expansion of districts and provinces is the military operation and new style Transmigration operation for the hastening of the ethic cleansing of Melanesians. I have written in an Opinion Column in the Pacific Post, 25th September 2009, with the topic: ‘district/City and Province Expansion in West Papua is a Military and New-style Transmigration Operation’. Special Autonomy Act No.21, Year 2001, has FAILED.

Expansion of Districts, Cities and Provinces that is not balanced with Indigenous Papuans forms chains of occupation, colonisation, and marginalisation. Indigenous Papuans are now being encouraged to take shelter behind the slogan of national development. “Political pitting (the politics of divide and conquer) such as applied by colonizers in Apartheid South Africa in 1978. Pieter W. Bother became Prime Minister and splintered the unity of South African society by setting up puppet states: The Puppet State of Transkei, Puppet State of Tswana, Puppet State of Venda, Puppet State of Ciskei. In the Papuan context, the Colonial Government of Indonesia has formed many puppet districts and also puppet provinces in order to break up the wholeness and unity of Indigenous Papuans.” (Yoman: p. Destruction of Ethnic Melanesia, Breaking the Silence of the History of Violence in West Papua, 2007: p. 224).

The Author himself has documentary evidence writing about military operations. If readers read my book entitled: ‘The Gate to Free Papua’ (Socratez Sofyan Yoman; 2000. Page. 78-86), it is very clearly found in this book, highly confidential documents released by the interior department Director General of the Office of National Unity and Community Protection (DITJEN KESBANG dan LINMAS) in official notes number: 578/ND/KESBANG/DIV/VI/2000, 9th June 2000 by radiogram Governor (Caretaker) head level 1 Irian Jaya, No. BB.091/POM/060200, dated june 2000, and No: 190/1671/SET/ dated 3rd June 2000. The primary goal is a plan and operation of regional conditioning, development of communication networks and the establishment of provinces and districts in Iran Jaya (Papua).

Implementing this operation of conditioning and expansion is the Interior Department, Department of Defence and Security, Department of Foreign Affairs, especially for diplomatic operations, Indonesian Police, Indonesian Military (TNI), the State Intelligence Coordinating Agency (Bakin), Strategic National Intelligence Agency (BAIS ), SPAM, AD Hearquarters, ASTER, KASTER TNI, SINTEL Headquarters, National Police (POLRI), Army Strategic Reserve Command (KOSTRAD), and Special Forces Command (KOPASSUS), Regional Leaders Forum Iran Jaya (Paupa) Province and other provinces.

Another document is a document from the National Security Council Secretary General, Jakarta, May 27 and May 28, 2003 on ‘Strategy for Conflict Resolution with separatist contexts in Papua Province through a political approach to security’ (this document can be seen in my book: “Voice for the Voiceless” Dumma Socratez Sofyan Yoman: 2009; pg. 117-118).

These two documents show the face and militaristic character of the Indonesian Government that annexed and occupies West Papua, and colonises Indigenous occupants, Melanesian people through political engineering since May 1st, 1963, the 1969 Referendum, and legislation Act 21, Year 2001 on Special Autonomy to this day. After annexation, to this date West Papua is seen by the Indonesian Government without an interest in the principles of justice and humanity along with the future survival of the people – the owners, heirs to the country and land of West Papua. The Indonesian Government administers West Papua as a problematic region and conflict area that needs to be resolved by a security approach. Although a security approach is evidently a total failure and the cause of human rights violations that are ruthless and grieve the heart of God’s people.

The expansion of districts / cities and provinces on a large scale if viewed from requirements such as: population, territory, natural resources and human resources; from all of these requirements in relation to total population and the readiness of human resources it is very ironic. Because the total population of Indigenous Papuans is only 1.5 million that does not need many districts/cities and provinces throughout Papua. Many districts/cities and provinces also need human resources that can fulfil the rank and stratification to occupy positions – both structural and functional positions.

Consequences of the large-scale expansion of districts/cities and provinces in West Papua are:

  1. The sending of officials from outside Papua to occupy important and strategic positions when Indigenous people cannot yet fulfil the criteria of rank, skill, experience, level of education.
  2. The sending and coming of people from outside to take economic opportunities in the regional expansion and the marginalisation and destruction of Indigenous people. Mr Juan Mendez, UN Secretary General Special Adviser in the field of Prevention of Genocide, stated: “West Papua is one area that is very alarming because the indigenous population is in danger of annihilation”. Yale University, USA, and the University of Sydney released a report that in Papua there is ethnic cleansing of Indigenous Papuans occurring.
  3. Construction of military and police bases for reasons of national security along with security and safety of settlers.
  4. Dispossession of the people for reasons of building government offices.
  5. Appropriation of community land for the purpose of building large shops, malls, supermarkets, mega-hotels and restaurants.
  6. The destruction of mountains and hills of the people.
  7. Destruction of sago and palm trees as a resource for income and peoples’ lives.
  8. Destruction and pollution of water owned by original inhabitants.

The Indonesian government and security forces have failed to build and instil the ideologies of Pancasila, the 1945 Constitution, The Unitary Republic of Indonesia, Unity in Diversity into Papua’s original inhabitants. On the contrary, the Government and the Indonesian security forces have been successfully built and strengthened ideology of West Papuan Independence by nurturing separatist stigma, rebellion and OPM. This is a fatal mistake made by the Government and security forces over the years. The approach of the Government and Security forces which does not respect human dignity, to this day has alienated the people’s hearts from Indonesia. The Indonesian government and security forces with violence have only managed to integrate (Papua) economically and politically into Indonesia. The Indonesian government really occupies, colonises and marginalises Papua’s original inhabitants.

Due to the failure of the Indonesian Government in Papua, Dr George Junus Aditjondro said: “The problems in Papua have been very difficult to resolve. Therefore, there is no other option but to follow the passionate demands of the people of Papua who want a referendum. And the Indonesian Government must immediately withdraw from Papua. Only a referendum can determine whether the Papuans still want to be part of Indonesia or not “(George’s Commentary at the launch of a book entitled:” West Papua: International Issues “, in the Kontras Office, Jakarta, Thursday, 11/3/2011).

“It’s only a matter if time, if we like it or not, want it or not, we will lose Papua because we have failed to capture the hearts of Papuans and this has been the problem from the beginning.” (Dr.Adnan Buyung Nasution, S.H. : source: Detiknews, Thursday, 16 December 2011).

“I know, I understand and also I’m aware that which I devote here. Therefore, if you are certain or not, believe or not, like or not, are happy or not, sooner or later West Papuans will gain independence and stand alone as one people and nation sovereign over their ancestor’s land. In this confidence and spirit, whatever the risk of people’s opinions and commentary, with firm believe and determination of conscience, I dedicate my knowledge to writing books of cultural history and every occurrence upon this land. So that the children and grandchildren of this nation, into the future, will learn that this nation has experienced a long history and long, bitter and unspeakable suffering perpetrated by the Indonesian Government.” (Ita Wakhu Purom, Numbay (Jayapura), West Papua, Thursday, June 9, 2011, 21:17 WP). This statement of faith has been immortalized in my 13th book entitled: “West Papua: An International Problem” (Yoman: 2011, p.4).

“Upon this rock I place the civilisation of Papuan people, although people possess high intelligence, reason and Marifa, they cannot lead this nation, this nation will rise up and lead itself” (Wasior, Manokwari, October 25, 1925, Rev.. IS Kijne ).

*Author: Chairman of the Board of the Fellowship of Baptist Churches of Papua.

Letters of solidarity flood in their thousands for Filep Karma

by a Special Correspondent for West Papua Media in Abepura

March 19, 2012

Kontras and Filep Karma's family with some of the nearly 7300 letters sent by international supporters of Karma (Photo: West Papua Media)

Filep Karma, is one of the political prisoners given sentences of 15 years of imprisonment by the government of Indonesia, by raising the Morning Star flag, on December 1, 2004, at Trikora field, Abepura. Ever since a period of 7 years, and 3 months of his prison sentence  have lasted in Abepura prison. During captivity Filep Karma received letters of solidarity sent by the International community through the office of the Commission for missing people and victims of violence in Papua (KontrasPapua).   Nearly 7292 letters of support have been sent in the period of 2011 untill 2012.

Filep Karma inside the prison hospital (Photo: West Papua Media)

United for the truth (BUK) and Kontras Papua held a Press Conference on March 19, 2012, and immediately submit a letter of support to the family representative of Filep Karma. Andrefina Karma,  Filep Karmas second daughter  said ” International Community support is strong solidarity for the freedom of my father, the people there once a month hold a simple campaign in front of the Indonesian embassy and called for the unconditional release of Filep Karma”, she said.

Letters that came from different parts of the world  proved that there is support for political prisoners in Papua. Olga Hamadi, Director of Kontras Papua says”  the government should not close her eyes  for the injustice suffered by political prisoners in Papua, both in conditions of health and food at the prison, which  received less serious attention”, she said. She also denied the statement by the Minister of Justice and Human Rights Republic of Indonesia during a visit to Papua saying that there are no political prisoners in Papua.

Filep Karma is one of  figures of political prisoners who never made a compromise with the Government of Indonesia. He rejected any form of clemency, amnesty, and abolition that is given by the Government. ” If I receive clemency, that means I ask for forgiveness to the government, but I do not feel guilty at all, I am just making a peaceful protest. Indonesia is a democratic country, am I wrong to fight for the basic rights of indigenous Papuans?

“I will continue to undergo a period of detention up to 15 years in prison, if you want to release me, I ask to be released unconditionaly”, Filep Karma said, as he was undergoing physiotherapy treatment in DOK II general hospital.


Thousands of West Papuans demand Referendum in Jayapura 14 Nov 2011

Several thousand West Papuan people took the streets in Jayapura on November 14 to  calling for a Referendum to demand their right of self determination.

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In another show of mass civil resistance since the brutal crackdown by Indonesian security forces on the 3rd Papuan Peoples Congress,  the demonstration organised by the West Papua National Committee also called for the Government of Indonesia to take responsibility for its increased unjustified violence towards West Papuan people.

Indonesian police attempted to block the march, but protestors pushed through peacefully to continue to the offices of the DPRP, the provincial parliament building.

Demoted former Papuan Police chief Iman Setiawan attempts show of force (Reuters)

Protest organisers earlier expressed grave fears that security forces would attempt to repeat the violence on unarmed and peaceful protestors, but international monitoring and effective citizen media on the ground contributed to the restraint shown by security forces.

Participants rejected dialogue or talk with Jakarta until violence ended and maintained their position that a referendum was the only just pathway towards fulfilling Papuan rights.

“Give us the space for a referendum so that we can choose what we want.  We don’t want dialogue doing the bidding of UP4B, or other policy of Special Autonomy;  We don’t need money, we don’t need to be with  Indonesia, let us be free on our land,” said speakers, referring to the Special Development unit set up by Indonesian President Yudoyhono to dilute Papuan calls for independence.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X4jVXagcUlM]

“The Papuan people have asked for an immediate referendum for self-determination. We reject any dialogue with Jakarta,” protest coordinator Mako Tabuni said.

“The referendum is non-negotiable.”

Mass Action Jayapura, 14 Nov 2011 (Af Wensi)

UN Declares Indonesia’s Detention Of Filep Karma A Violation Of International Law, Calls For Immediate Release

In response to a petition filed by Freedom Now and Hogan Lovells LLP, the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention has issued its opinion that the Government of Indonesia is in violation of international law by detaining Filep Karma. The Working Group calls on the Government of Indonesia to immediately release the human rights advocate.

Mr. Karma is a prominent Papuan human rights advocate and former civil servant arrested on December 1, 2004 for raising the Papuan Morning Star flag at a political rally in commemoration of Papuan independence from Dutch rule. Although Mr. Karma has explicitly denounced the use of violence, he was convicted for crimes of hostility against the state and sedition in a trial that fell far below international standards of due process. He now languishes in prison serving a fifteen-year sentence, despite health concerns and calls for his release by numerous NGOs and government officials. In August, 2011, 26 members of the U.S. Congress urged President Yudhoyono to release Mr. Karma. Forty members of Congress signed a similar letter in 2008. This week, President Obama will be in Indonesia attending the 2011 ASEAN Summit—which takes place November 17-19 in Bali—where many hope such human rights discussions will take place.

Freedom Now Executive Director Maran Turner stated: “The United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention has found Indonesia’s actions a clear violation of international law. Mr. Karma is a nonviolent advocate who was arrested for his views and convicted in a trial marred by judicial bias, denial of appeal without reason, and intimidation tactics. I urge President Obama to raise Filep Karma’s case with President Yudhoyono and to call for Indonesia’s compliance with the UN opinion by releasing Filep Karma.”

The United Nations Working Group determined that Mr. Karma’s arrest was due to his exercise of the fundamental rights of freedom of expression, peaceful assembly, and association. According to the UN, provisions used to convict and detain Mr. Karma—including declaring “feelings of hate”—were “drafted in such general and vague terms that they can be used arbitrarily to restrict the freedoms of opinion, expression, assembly and association.” Such a detention violates the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, a multi-party treaty by which Indonesia is bound, as well as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The Working Group also censured the Government of Indonesia for violating Mr. Karma’s right to a fair trial.

The opinion concluded by calling the Government’s attention to broader human rights violations in Indonesia, for which Filep Karma’s situation is emblematic, stating, “The Working Group will remind The Republic of Indonesia of its duties to comply with international human rights obligations not to detain arbitrarily, to release persons who are arbitrarily detained, and to provide compensation to them.”

Freedom Now, a non-profit, non-partisan organization that works to free prisoners of conscience, and Hogan Lovells LLP, an international law firm, welcome the UN’s decision. They call on the Indonesian government to uphold its commitments under international law and immediately release Mr. Karma.

Source: Freedom Now

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