UN High commissioner questions invitation from Indonesian Government

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra'ad Al-Hussein, visited Indonesia from 5 to 7 February 2018. During the press conference in Jakarta, the High Commissioner expressed - among other things -concerns regarding the human rights situation in West Papua. He also announced that the Indonesian president Joko Widodo has invited his regional office in Bangkok to visit West Papua. In his opening statement and global update of human rights concerns at the 38th session of the Human Rights Council,  Zeid Raad Al Hussein, has questioned the invitation from the Indonesian government to visit West Papua: “… I am concerned that despite positive engagement by the authorities in many respects, the Government’s invitation to my Office to visit Papua – which was made during my visit in February – has still not been honoured."

The Indonesian Government responded through its permanent representative to the United Nations in Geneva, Mr Hasan Kleib that "...it is deeply regrettable that the staff members of his regional office in Bangkok, instead of coordinating the planned visit with Indonesian authorities, have unilaterally set the dates and areas to visit in Papua and West Papua, while demanding immediate access”. Kleib reaffirmed that his Government is still committed to honour its standing invitation for the high commissioner's office to visit West Papua. However, he urged the human rights chief “… to ensure that his staff at the Regional Office in Bangkok will honour and strictly abide by the established working method of the UN, and respect the principles of consent of the host Government in its future engagement.“