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

 

Freedom Flotilla Makes Sail for West Papua

Freedom Flotilla Makes Sail for West Papua as Military Amass in Merauke and Daru

The Freedom Flotilla’s flagship the Pog is set to sail for West Papua on this morning’s tide. A military buildup in the Flotilla’s destination port of Merauke has been confirmed, with 2500 troops having arrived on the 28th of August to bolster numbers at the Indonesian border.

Undeterred, the core crew of activists have committed themselves to carrying out their peaceful mission to conduct a ceremony sharing the Sacred Waters from the mound springs of Lake Eyre, and the ashes of Sacred Fires from Aboriginal Tent Embassies across Australia.

The additional troops are suspected to have been deployed to crack down on a welcome ceremonies planned for the Freedom Flotilla. Locals from across Merauke district gathered on the 28th of August as the military reinforcements sailed into harbour, preparing garlands of flowers to welcome the Indigenous elders and crew to their land.

On the same day, four organisers of a congregation held in Sorong to pray for the safety of the Freedom Flotilla were arrested and charged with treason.

Indonesian Navy Patrol boats have also been photographed and sighted patrolling the Indonesian border.

The Freedom Flotilla has decided to sail directly to Merauke, rather than via the PNG port of Daru. Locals in Daru have reported Australian Defence Force personnel arriving in the past weeks, with pictures confirming 7 zodiacs and 21 personnel arriving in a Hercules aircraft. Fisherman also reported the presence of an Australian Navy vessel near the maritime border. A Papua New Guinea Defence Force helicopter was also sighted circling the island. Freedom Flotilla organiser Ronny Kareni said “the sudden military presence is highly unusual, it surprised and terrified the villagers on the island who had been organising for a peaceful welcome."

Australia’s incoming foreign minister Julie Bishop, has stated that the Indonesian military may do “whatever it wishes” against the Freedom Flotilla. The Indonesian military has not ruled out the use of lethal force. Greens Senator Richard di Natale accused the new minister of inciting military action against peaceful protest in the Guardian on the 5th of September. He stated that her comments were “not befitting somebody who is likely to become the next foreign minister."

Izzy Brown stated on the freedomflotillawestpapua.orgPogcast’ (8/9/13) that now the “worse of two evils” had won the Australian election, there was “all the more reason to challenge both the Australian and the Indonesian Governments jurisdiction over these waterways.”

The Flotilla expects to arrive at the Indonesian border in the two to five days.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 


UN: Bachelet Alarmed By Number Of Palestinian Children Killed In Latest Escalation

UN Human Rights Chief Michelle Bachelet today expressed alarm at the high number of Palestinians, including children, killed and injured in the occupied Palestinian territory this year, including in intense hostilities between Israel and Palestinian armed groups in Gaza last weekend... More>>

Save The Children: One Year Under Taliban Rule, Girls Are More Isolated, Hungry, Sad: New Report
One year since the Taliban took control of Afghanistan, an economic crisis, crippling drought and new restrictions have shattered girls’ lives, excluding them from society and leaving them hungry...
More>>

Palestinian Ministry of Health: Developments In The Health Situation During The Israeli Aggression On The Cities & Governorates Of The Gaza Strip
For the second day in a row, the Israeli aggression against the Gaza Strip continues by targeting overcrowded residential areas and neighborhoods, as the death toll rose to 13 citizens, including a 5-year-old girl and a 23-year-old woman... More>>


Somalia: ‘We Cannot Wait For Famine To Be Declared; We Must Act Now’
Rising acute food insecurity in Somalia has caused more than 900,000 people to flee their homes in search of humanitarian assistance since January last year, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has warned... More>>

UN: American West Faces Water And Power Shortages Due To Climate Crisis
Two of the largest reservoirs in the United States are at dangerously low levels due to the climate crisis and overconsumption of water, which could affect water and electricity supply for millions in six western states and Mexico, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) warned on Tuesday... More>>



Singapore: UN Experts Call For Immediate Moratorium On Executions For Drug Offences

UN experts* today condemned the execution of Nazeri Bin Lajim, a 64-year-old Malay Singaporean national convicted of drug offenses and urged the Government of Singapore to halt plans to execute individuals on death row for drug related charges... More>>