Human rights defenders have collected first-hand information on the situation of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the Yahukimo regency. They fled their villages after members of the West Papuan National Liberation Army (TPNPB) killed one military member and injured another one during an attack on the military post in the Suru-Suru district on 20 November 2021. According to information received, 4,695 indigenous Papuans from 13 villages in the Yahukimo regency have fled their homes. The IDPs have sought shelter in 15 temporary camps in the forest where they have no access to sufficient food, healthcare and education services (see photos below). Seven IDPs have reportedly died since being displaced (see table on bottom), while sixteen women have given birth without medical attention.
Many healthcare and education facilities in the Suru-Suru district closed since the attack on the military post. Observers declared that two primary schools, two secondary schools and two health centres in Suru-Suru have been abandoned. The health workers and teachers have left the district.
Most of the IDPs are members of the Papuan Tabernacle Church (Kingmi Papua). Kingmi Papua called upon the central and local Government to provide relief goods, healthcare services to the IDPs and open access for humanitarian organisations and United Nations Human Rights observers to the conflict-affected regencies Yahukimo, Maybrat, Pegunungan Bintang, Nduga, Intan Jaya and Puncak.
More than 60,000 indigenous Papuans have reportedly been internally displaced over the past three years, most of which have not returned to their homes due to the ongoing heavy security force presence in the conflict areas. The central Government continues to deploy security forces to West Papua whilst turning a blind eye on the civilians affected by the security force operations. Human rights organisations have repeatedly called upon President Jokowi to enter into dialogue with the independence movement to seek a peaceful solution to the long-standing conflict in West Papua.
Photos of IDPs in multiple camps in the forest, taken by human rights defenders in the Yahukimo Regency
Table with IDPs who died during displacement in the Yahukimo regency since 20 November 2021
|1||Sepria Bayage||5 years||female|
|2||Ekelana Heluka||35 years||female|
|3||Marten Heluka||26 years||male|
|4||Isak Bonge||36 years||male|
|5||Yosua Bonge||24 years||male|
|6||Dogohuru Weak||50 years||male|
|7||Bare Mone||24 years||male|