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

 


Protestors call for release of Papuan political prisoners

Protestors call for the release of Papuan political prisoners in Indonesia

Around 100 protestors demonstrated today outside the Indonesian embassy in London to call for the unconditional and immediate release of all Papuan political prisoners.

76 of the protestors were handcuffed and had their mouths taped shut to represent the 76 political prisoners currently being held in Indonesian prisons.

The protest was organized by Tapol,Survival International, Amnesty Internationaland the Free West Papua Campaign.

According to data from Papuans Behind Bars, the number of political arrests more than doubled in 2013 compared to the previous year, and reports of torture and ill treatment of political detainees have increased. West Papua’s tribal people continue to be arrested for peaceful activities and are often charged with treason or incitement, which can carry lengthy prison sentences.

A demo today in West Papua about political prisoners was dispersed by the police who fired warning shots. Two students have been arrested.

Wiki Meaga was arrested in November 2010 while he was on the way to the funeral of a relative who had become ill after being tortured by the police. Meaga and eight other Papuans were accused of raising the banned Morning Star flag before they left their village in the Papuan highlands. It is believed that they were tortured after their arrest. Six of the men were found guilty of ‘treason’ and sentenced to eight years imprisonment. The fate of the other three men is unknown.

Dominikus Surabut, a Papuan activist, writer and documentary film maker who was arrested in 2011 sent a message to the protestors in London, saying ‘I can’t be with you in person today because I am in jail, but my soul and my spirit are with you. United and strong we will overcome.’

Nixiwaka Yawanawá, a Yawanawá Indian from the Brazilian Amazon, who joined Survival International to speak out for indigenous rights also participated in the protest. He said, ‘As an Amazon Indian I can understand the Papuans’ fight for freedom and justice. The Papuan tribes have suffered racism and violence at the hands of the Indonesian government for over 50 years; this inhumane action has to stop immediately.’

Indonesia has occupied Papua (the western half of the island of New Guinea) since 1963, and more than 100,000 Papuans are believed to have been killed since then.

Survival’s Director Stephen Corry said today, ‘This is an excellent example of why the current vogue amongst some American ‘popular science’ writers for claiming that the ‘peaceful’ state pacifies ‘violent’ tribes is nonsense. Indonesia’s occupation of West Papua has only been secured through the killing and torture of tens of thousands of tribespeople, who object to their new colonizers. It is one of the world’s longest-standing, and under-reported, gross violations of human rights.’

Survival International is the global movement for tribal peoples’ rights. We help tribal people defend their lives, protect their lands and determine their own futures. Founded in 1969, Survival celebrates its 45th Anniversary this year.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Cyclone Pam Drives Up Contraceptive Demand In Vanuatu

UNFPA Pacific, Port Vila, Vanuatu (March 31, 2015) - Katherine Silas grimaces but one is not entirely sure if it is in response to pain or merely the sight of the needle being used to implant the long-term contraceptive, jadelle, a week after Cyclone ... More>>

Palestine: Border Police Extremely Close When They Shot The US Activist

New testimony at final hearing in Tristan Anderson's trial indicates Border Police were extremely close when they shot the US activist in the head More>>

Palestine: Ni’lin Demonstrators Met With Violence

International Solidarity Movement On the 20th of March, during Ni’lin’s weekly Friday demonstration, Israeli occupation forces attacked protestors with about 20 rounds of tear gas canisters shot with the ‘venom’ tear gas launcher mounted on a military jeep ... More>>

ALSO:

UN Envoy Says Yemen On 'Rapid Downward Spiral'

Yemen stands on the brink of civil war amid deepening political tensions and an uptick in sectarian violence, United Nations Special Adviser Jamal Benomar warned today as he explained that only through dialogue could the country achieve a peaceful political transition. More>>


Continued International Support As Vanuatu Recovers

Damage seen on Saturday 14 March 2015 in Port Vila, capital of Vanuatu, after Cyclone Pam moved through the Archipelago. Photo: UNICEF Pacific More>>

UNICEF Rushes Emergency Supplies For Cyclone-Affected Tuvalu

The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) is dispatching emergency life-saving supplies to communities in Tuvalu as part of its efforts to assist communities in the Pacific region that were affected by Tropical Cyclone Pam, with nutrition and hygiene kits arriving today. More>>

Guinea Reports Highest Weekly Ebola Case Total This Year

Guinea reports highest weekly Ebola case total so far this year, new UN data shows More>>


Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news