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Benny Wenda’s visit to Aotearoa New Zealand on hold

Benny Wenda’s visit to Aotearoa New Zealand on hold

Prominent West Papuan independence leader, Benny Wenda, will not be able to visit Aotearoa New Zealand at the end of August as previously announced.

There is hope that the visit can be rescheduled to a later date.

“I am very sorry I am not able to be with you”, says Benny Wenda. “Unfortunately I am unable to travel at the moment due to unforeseen circumstances. My spirit is with you all. You have already taken up this issue and made it a major campaign in the Pacific, and this gives us great confidence and strength as brothers and sisters, and I thank you from the people of West Papua.”

Benny Wenda was particularly looking forward to meeting with the new wave of Maori and Pasifika activists in Aotearoa and meeting with New Zealand members of the International Parliamentarians for West Papua.

“Please keep up this momentum. I really appreciate and respect the work of the West Papuan support networks, tribal chiefs, parliamentarians, journalists and individuals making these events happen. It is a great privilege to hear how our support network has grown in New Zealand thanks to you, and to see how many people on the ground are joining our cries for freedom.”

Awareness of the plight of West Papuans is growing steadily in Aotearoa New Zealand, the Pacific region, and globally. In September the international community will be watching how Pacific and regional leaders, including New Zealand’s Prime Minister Mr John Key, address the ongoing human rights issue during the Pacific Island Forum meeting.


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