World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

Amnesty: Threat of violence mounts in Papua

Indonesia: Amnesty International calls for restraint as threat of violence mounts in Papua

* News Release Issued by the International Secretariat of Amnesty International *

30 November 2000
ASA 21/071/2000
227/00

Amnesty International today warned that the risk of violence was mounting across Papua (Irian Jaya) on the eve of 1st December pro-independence demonstrations in the province.

"Any moves by the security forces to use excessive force, including bullets and beatings, to break up protests tomorrow risks inflaming an already tense situation," Amnesty International said. "Restraint must be the watchword of the day,"

The authorities have increased their military presence in the region over recent months, heightening fears that attempts to hold pro-independence demonstrations, in particular flag-raising ceremonies, will be met with a military crackdown. In an apparent show of force, a convoy of military and police personnel reportedly moved through the Papuan capital, Jayapura today, heightening a sense of fear among local residents.

Tensions have also increased this week with the arrest of three members of the pro-independence Papuan Presidium Council, a local pro-independence body. The three have reportedly been detained on suspicion of subversion. It is unclear whether or not they have been charged. There are fears that these arrests mark a further step in a campaign to silence the expression of pro-independence sentiment in Papua.

Both pro-independence and pro-integration militia groups are believed to be active in the region, armed with bows and arrows and other traditional weapons. Some pro-independence militia members have reportedly vowed to fight back if there is a crackdown by the security forces tomorrow. It is feared that any outbreak of violence could lead to further human rights abuses.

The demonstrations planned for tomorrow follow similar protests over recent years in Papua, in particular ceremonies involving the raising of a Papuan flag, a popular form of protest. The frequently heavy-handed response of the security forces to such demonstrations has been marked by serious human rights violations, including unlawful killings, torture and arbitrary detentions.

"Such an approach bears the hallmarks of the policies of the past," Amnesty International said."Peaceful dialogue based on respect for fundamental human rights must form the foundations of any future settlement to Papua's disputed political status."

****************************************************************

You may repost this message onto other sources provided the main text is not altered in any way and both the header crediting Amnesty International and this footer remain intact.

****************************************************************


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

For NZ, It Was May 6: Earth Overshoot Day 2019 Is The Earliest Ever

Humanity is currently using nature 1.75 times faster than our planet’s ecosystems can regenerate. This is akin to using 1.75 Earths... More>>

ALSO:

Asylum: More Manus Refugees Fly To US But Hundreds Still In Limbo

“The US deal was never going to provide enough places for the refugees Australia has held on Manus and Nauru. There are over 1800 refugees needing resettlement,” said Ian Rintoul, spokesperson for the Refugee Action Coalition. More>>

ALSO:

Food Security: African Swine Fever Rapidly Spreading In Asia

African Swine Fever is rapidly spreading in East and Southeast Asia threatening food security and livelihoods of households relying on pig farming... More>>

ALSO:

"NZ Leadership Needed": Japan Resume Commercial Whaling

The Green Party is deeply concerned by Japan’s resumption of commercial whaling, Green Party Animal Welfare Spokesperson Gareth Hughes said today. More>>

ALSO: