Banned West Papua Flag Raised In New Zealand
On November 25 , the governor of Papua province (the Indonesian government name for West Papua) announced ... "all people of Papua are not allowed to celebrate the 1st of December as Papuan Independence Day. The raising of Bintang Kejora [Morning Star] flag and other Papuan symbols which are against the unitary state of Indonesia are banned."
Maire Leadbeater Raises the West Papuan flag.
So In Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, Sydney, Melbourne, London, Dublin and numerous other cities around the world the Morning Star flag is raised on December 1. The photos attached are from the Auckland flag raising event today at noon.
For 41 years, the Indonesians have quite literally got away with murder. In 1969, they rigged the result of the Act of 'Free' Choice referendum, which was supposed to be the Papuans' chance to choose between Indonesia or independence. Instead of one person, one vote, the Indonesians hand picked a mere 1,025 Papuans and forced them at gun point to vote for Indonesia. And during all of this the UN and the western powers, including New Zealand, Britain, the USA and Australia watched on, knowing full well what was going on . but doing nothing to intervene. In fact the rest of the world accepted the result and washed its hands of the whole West Papua "problem".
Tonight, in the remote Highlands of West Papua, the Indonesian-occupied western half of New Guinea island, up to 15,000 Papuan refugees are huddling together to keep warm in caves or make-shift shelters on the frozen foothills of the glacier-topped Puncak Jaya -- at 5,000 meters high, the tallest mountain in Australasia. They are starving and terrified . children and elders, mothers and fathers.
Sometime last week, they were herded into the mountains like cattle by Indonesian soldiers firing machine guns at them from helicopter gunships as they ran for their lives. For now, we can't be sure exactly how many Papuans have been shot dead, but we know the names of some of them. We do know that at least two elders, a church pastor, a woman and two children - unarmed, innocent civilians -- were gunned down in cold blood by Indonesian soldiers as they fled.
Now the 15,000 Papuan refugees are encircled by thousands of the very same Indonesian soldiers who have just murdered their loved-ones and destroyed their homes and churches. The Indonesian military has formed a strict cordon around the Papuans. No Papuans are being allowed out and no Papuans are being allowed in to bring the food, medical supplies and warm clothes which are all now desperately needed. Not even church pastors are being allowed through to tend to the sick, wounded and starving.
"People run to the mountains. Now they need food, yeah? Now, they need food," one Papuan pastor, Revd Socratez Sofyan Yoman, has told Radio Australia, crying out to the outside world to come to their help.
Tragically, we know that so far 15 Papuans
have died on the mountainside of Puncak Jaya, of starvation
and exposure .most of them were children. We don't know, but
by now, many more Papuans have most likely died.