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Open Letter to Pacific Islands Forum Leaders re West Papua

Open Letter to Pacific Islands Forum Leaders re West Papua

29 August 2017 - AWPA has written an open letter to the PIF leaders (letter below media release).

Joe Collins of AWPA said “we thank the PIF leaders for discussing and raising concerns about the human rights situation in West Papua in the official communiqués’ at the Forum meetings in Port Moresby in 2015 and Pohnpei in 2016 and is encouraged that the Forum Leaders agreed that the issue of West Papua should remain on their agenda”.

AWPA urges the PIF Leaders

To continue to raise concern about the human rights situation in West Papua with the Indonesian Government.

To continue to press Jakarta to allow a PIF fact-finding mission to the territory. The Indonesian President has said that West Papua is now open and the authorities are saying that the human rights situation is improving. If this is the case why not allow a PIF fact-finding mission to the territory?

Because of the ongoing arrests of peaceful demonstrators in West Papua, AWPA asks the Forum leaders to urge Jakarta to allow the UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression to visit West Papua to investigate the situation on the ground in the territory.

We note the large number of non-self governing territories and organizations that have various types of status at the PIF. AWPA believes it would be beneficial if West Papua also had official status at the PIF under the umbrella organization, the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP). The West Papuan people have been calling for dialogue with Jakarta for years and AWPA believes the PIF can play an important role in helping facilitate such a dialogue between representatives of the West Papuan leadership and the Indonesian Government.

AWPA also urges the PIF to support the call for the re-inscription of West Papua on the UN Decolonization Committee. The Special Committee on decolonization visited New Caledonia in March 2014 and AWPA urges the PIF leaders to ask the Committee to also visit West Papua on a fact finding mission to investigate how the West Papuan people have fared under Indonesian rule. It is an accepted fact that the so-called act of free choice in 1969 was a farce and the UN has a moral responsibility to the West Papuan people for that tragic event


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