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


Papua: Human Rights Focus In AUT Seminar

* Pacific Media Watch Online - check the website for archive and links:
* Post a comment on this story at PMW's Right of Reply:

By Dianna Vezich

AUCKLAND (Te Waha Nui Online/Pacific Media Watch): Advocacy groups and campaigners have organised an international conference to focus on the suffering in their neighbouring Pacific countries this weekend.

A two-day conference at AUT University on August 18-19 will focus on the plight of West Papua, an Indonesian-ruled territory since 1963.

Organised by the Indonesian Human Rights Committee, the West Papua human rights conference will examine the situation in the Pacific colony.

“It’s very much an oppressive situation and the Indonesian military has a heavy presence in West Papua,” says Maire Leadbeater, spokesperson of the IHRC.

Environmental devastation is also a major concern among West Papuans.

Large international corporations are involved in illegal logging in the country and in exploitation of the largest gold mine in the world at Freeport.

One of the key speakers at the conference is Baptist leader Rev Socratez Sofyan Yoman, one of many West Papuans threatened and harassed by the military and police intelligence officers.

He has travelled internationally to protest for justice and human rights in his country.

Another important speaker is John Wing, coordinator of the West Papua project at the University of Sydney’s Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies.

Leadbeater emphasises that West Papuans want peace in their homeland.

“Their simple demand is dialogue. They’re not asking for self-determination overnight,” she says.

She believes peace will occur when there is demilitarisation in West Papua.

West Papua news website at AUT and programme:




PACIFIC MEDIA WATCH is an independent, non-profit, non-government organisation comprising journalists, lawyers, editors and other media workers, dedicated to examining issues of ethics, accountability, censorship, media freedom and media ownership in the Pacific region.

(c)1996-2006 Copyright - All rights reserved.

Items are provided solely for review purposes as a non-profit educational service. Copyright remains the property of the original producers as indicated in the header. Recipients should seek permission from the copyright owner for any publishing. Copyright owners not wishing their materials to be posted by PMW please contact us. The views expressed in material listed by PMW are not necessarily the views of PMW or its members.

Recipients should rely on their own inquiries before making decisions based on material listed in PMW. Please copy appeals to PMW and acknowledge source.

For further information, inquiries about joining the Pacific Media Watch listserve, articles for publication, and giving feedback contact Pacific Media Watch at:

Fax: (+679) 30 5779
Mail: PO Box 78028, Auckland 1002, Aotearoa/New Zealand

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Swing States: Gordon Campbell On Why The US Needs MMP

After the bizarre events this week in Helsinki, the world will be hoping and praying that the US midterm elections in November can put a restraining brake on the presidency of Donald Trump. This may happen, but there’s a highly undemocratic reason why such hopes may be frustrated. More>>


putin, trump scalpGordon Campbell: On The White House Romance With Russia

Tough on Europe over trade, at the G-7. Tough on Europe over defence, at NATO. And utterly smitten as usual by Vladimir Putin at the Helsinki summit. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On This Week’s NATO Debacle

For someone routinely cast as a clown presiding over an administration in chaos, Donald Trump has been very consistent about his agenda, and remarkably successful in achieving it, in the short term at least. More>>


NZ Law Society: Rule Of Law Threatened In Nauru

“The recently enacted Administration of Justice Act 2018 is another clear sign of the deterioration of civil rights in Nauru,” the Law Society’s Rule of Law Committee convenor Austin Forbes QC says. More>>


'Fixing' Family Separation: Executive Order Imprisons Families Indefinitely

Amnesty: President Trump signed an executive order today mandating for children to stay with their parents in detention while their asylum claims are processed. More>>