Papuan students commemorate 1st July and Biak Massacre in Surabaya, Bandung and Makassar

Papuan student movements in the Javanese cities Bandung and Surabaya organised peaceful assemblies in commemoration of the 1st July, which marks the day of the West Papuan independence proclamation in 1971, and the Biak Massacre, where security forces killed scores of people in the Papuan island of Biak on 6 July 1998. A discussion among students in a Papuan dormitory in Makassar, Sulawesi Selatan Province, was forcefully dispersed by a nationalist-militant group. Police officers failed to protect the students from the mob.

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Police in Biak alleged to have tortured suspect with boiling water

The Biak-based legal aid organisation LBH Kyadawun has raised allegations of torture against the Biak police. Imanuel Rumayom, lawyer and LBH Kyuduwun coordinator, explained that police officers had used physical force against Mr Yohan Ronsumbre, 20, during the police interrogation at the Biak-Numfor district police headquarters. On 21 June 2021, Mr Ronsumbre and two other suspects were arrested concerning the theft of a mobile phone.

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Update on situation of IDPs from Puncak and Nduga

The ICP has compiled the latest information from human rights observers and media sources regarding internally displaced persons (IDPs) from the regencies Puncak and Nduga. All information received indicates a lack of commitment from the local governments in Puncak and Nduga. The IDPs from Nduga already have to live under these uncertain conditions for more than two years without adequate healthcare, education, and humanitarian government services.

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Police officers forcefully disperse peaceful protest at Freeport Mine – at least one worker tortured

Police officers forcefully dispersed a peaceful protest by Freeport workers at the Freeport mine in the Tembaggapura District of Mimika Regency on 27 June 2021. According to information received by the ‘Reconciliation and Prayer Network for the Recovery of Papua’ (JDRP2), Freeport employees had set up a roadblock at Mile 72. They voiced their rejection against a forced vaccination with the Chinese Covid-19 vaccine Sinovac. Previously, rumours had spread that the Freeport management was considering introducing a mandatory vaccination policy. Police officers allegedly dispersed the crowd using excessive force. At least one protester sustained bruises and injuries as a result of police violence. According to JDRP2, officers arrested twenty other protesters and temporarily detained them at the Mimika District Police headquarters in the town of Timika.

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Disagreement over temporary replacement of Governor between Papua and Jakarta

On 9 May 2021, the Papuan Governor, Lukas Enembe (see photo, source Jubi), left Jayapura and underwent medical treatment in Singapore. As of 30 June 2021, Lukas Enembe is still recovering from a sickness and has not returned to West Papua yet. Meanwhile, Papua’s vice-Governor, Klemen Tinal, passed away on 21 May 2021. The absence of Klemen Tinal and Lukas Enembe from their position as governor and vice-governor has caused a new conflict of interest between Jakarta and Papua.

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Update on criminalisation of Victor Yeimo – Lawyers report police to Ombudsman office for disregarding Victor Yeimo’s rights during detention

Victor Yeimo’s lawyers have reported the Papuan police for alleged maladministration to the Ombudsman’s office. According to the lawyers, the police disregarded their client's right to communicate with legal counsel and his family and the right to meet clergy during detention at the mobile police headquarters in Kotaraja, Jayapura (see photo, source: Jubi). Human rights observers had already expressed concerns over various criminal procedure violations in mid-May 2021. The lawyers called upon the Ombudsman’s office to ensure that the police will ensure the enjoyment of the rights of suspects during detention, including those of Victor Yeimo.

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Government says MIFEE should become food estate

The Indonesian environmental NGO Walhi has expressed concerns over the government’s plan to change the Merauke Integrated Food and Energy Estate (MIFEE) to a pure food estate. President Joko Widodo considers the food estate is crucial for the improvement of Indonesia’s food security. Walhi argues that megaprojects on national food security like MIFEE go to the detriment of the indigenous peoples and natural forests living in the vicinity of the project area. According to Walhi, the government only changes the project's name. In contrast, the project's negative impact for the indigenous population and the forests in the project area remains the same. Instead of changing the Project's name, Walhi urged the Jokowi Government to change its concept on national food security.

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MRP challenges legality of unilateral revision of Papuan special autonomy law

The Papuan Peoples’ Assemblies (MRP) of the provinces Papua and Papua Barat are challenging the legality of Jakarta’s effort to revise Law No. 21/2001 on Special Autonomy for the Papua Province. On 17 June 2021, a team of lawyers submitted an application with file number 2085-0/PAN.MK/VI/2021 to the constitutional court in Jakarta in response to a draft law on the amendment of the law, which the Indonesian parliament had discussed and drafted throughout the past month without prior consultation with political institutions in West Papua.

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WPCC deplores appointment of Prov. Secretary Dance Flassy as Acting Governor of Papua

In early May this year, the West Papuan Council of Churches reached out to President Jokowi, the governor of the Papua province and to the head of the provincial police via three open letters. Since then, the situation in West Papua has kept spiralling and the conflict aggravating. The latest unrest is the response to the controversial appointment of Papua's Provincial Government Secretary, Dance Yulian Flassy, as Acting Governor of Papua province by Indonesia's Home Affairs Minister Tito Karnavian. The reason given is that Papua Governor Lukas Enembe is currently undergoing treatment in Singapore and, in his absence, government and public services need to continue running smoothly. According to news outlet Asia Pacific Report, this sudden appointment shocked Governor Enembe, who said that he had not been informed nor made aware of the appointment.

In this open statement issued on 27 June 2021, the WPCC mainly criticises the appointment of Dance Flassy and points out that this move is only part of a larger government agenda to carry out divisive politics between Papuans and to perpetuate the Special Autonomy Status. The letter reads as follows:

Download letter in English & Indonesian 

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Thirty-two KNPB members arbitrarily arrested in Jayawijaya Regency

Members of the Jayawijaya district police reportedly arrested 32 members of the West Papua National Committee (KNPB) in the Ilekma Village of Napua District, Jayawijaya Regency, on 18 June 2021. The KNPB is a movement organisation that promotes the right to self-determination through non-violent means. The officers brought the activists to the Jayawijaya district police headquarters in Wamena and interrogated them there.

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More Articles...

  1. Military member kills Papuan man during shooting at Jibama Market, Jayawijaya Regency
  2. Two indigenous Papuans disappeared in Pegunungan Bintang
  3. Police intimidate participants during book launch at P3W Padang Bulan, Jayapura
  4. Update on criminalisation of Victor Yeimo – Police submit case files to prosecutor
  5. Update on killing of Rev. Yeremia Zanambani in Intan Jaya – Forensic specialists conduct autopsy
  6. Joint security forces execute three indigenous Papuans in Puncak Regency – Three others injured by bullets
  7. Security force members torture indigenous villager and kill pastor in Puncak Regency
  8. Human Rights Commission visits internally displaced persons in Puncak
  9. Event notice: Papuan Voices Film Festival coming in August 2021
  10. At least 25 victims of extra-judicial killings in West Papua in 2020
  11. Update on armed conflict in Puncak Regency – TPN PB suggests armed combat shifts to designated area
  12. Indonesia votes against UN resolution on genocide and crimes against humanity
  13. New protests against special autonomy and for the release of Papuan political prisoners – 146 protesters arrested in Manokwari
  14. Update on Internet breakdown in Jayapura – Internet connection planned to be repaired in early June
  15. Six Papuan protesters standing trial in Sorong accused of treason
  16. New shootings indicate spreading of armed conflict in West Papua
  17. West Papua Council of Churches voices concern over the escalating situation in Papua
  18. Update on prosecution of Victor Yeimo – TAPOL reports case to UN Special Procedures
  19. Joint security forces arrest three IDPs in Puncak, among them one minor
  20. Update on situation of IDPs in Puncak Regency – Local government says thousands displaced due armed clashes
  21. Victim of torture dies in Tambrauw Regency – Observers demand independent investigation
  22. Again internet breakdown as armed conflict escalates – Coincidence or deliberate government measure?
  23. Westpapua-Netzwerk fears further violence in WP due to the "terrorist" categorisation
  24. KNPB Spokesperson Victor Yeimo arrested and charged with treason
  25. What about Jokowi’s promise to open access for foreign journalists to West Papua?
  26. SAFEnet suspects internet disruptions in West Papua are deliberate
  27. Further armed clashes cause more internal displacement in Puncak Regency
  28. What’s wrong with the education and healthcare system in West Papua? A case study in Yalimo provides insights
  29. Police press charges against Papuan student for social media post
  30. Papuan man arrested for alleged weapon trade – Lawyers rise allegation of torture against police