Jakarta, Jubi – Indonesians remain unaware of violence towards Papuan people since 1963 by the Indonesian Military wasn’t aware by Indonesian citizens at other regions. The only news Indonesians in other parts of the country hear on Papua is related to PT. Freeport and armed conflicts. Therefore a campaign is needed to spread awareness about rights violations, an activist said.
“We should promote it to avoid bias. ‘Papua Itu Kita’ becomes a medium to promote awareness about issues in Papua,” Zely Arian from ‘Papua Itu Kita’ Movement said in the public discussion on “Military and Impunity: A Cause Behind The Worse Papuan Women’s Life” held in LBH Jakarta Office last week.
A resource person Sandra Mambrasar represented Elsham Papua said actually State’s violence against Papuan Women had been occurred before Papua becoming part of Republic of Indonesia through the people’s vote in 1969. Based on research, she said Elsham Papua have evidence about Papuan women at Bird Head region had been physically tortured in 1963. “Some had permanent disability,” she said during her presentation on violence against women in Papua.
Mambrasar said this situation is still happened until now. Papuan women are still experiencing the physical, sexual and psychological abuses as well as discrimination. A general abused pattern is stigmatization in which their husbands or family members who suspected rebels were terrorized, arrested and tortured. And it was impacted women.
“If their husband or family members were stigmatized involving with the rebel group, they automatically wouldn’t have any help from others, for example to be listed in the rice for poor program although the village apparatus was their clan,” she cited a case occurred in Biak Barat.
Meanwhile, the Monitoring and Investigation Coordinator on Human Right Violation Yones Douw from Justice and Peace Department of Papuan Evangelist Church said the local church’s assistance wasn’t enough to help the victims who continually growing that affect the Papuan women and children.
“A woman whose husband was shot will experience the physiological pressure facing the reality that her children have lost their father. Papuan women are still crying until today. I hope in the future no women would cry in this land,” he said.
According to The Jakarta Post Editor in Chief Arti Nurbaiti who as responder, Papuan issues are difficult getting attention from national media because of many reasons including the technical reason to value of issue occurred in Papua.
“It was like the military violence occurred in the 3rd Papua Congress in which military shot the civilians, that incident must be covered in the national media with the thought why this incident could be happened in this big democracy country?” she said. (Mawel Benny/rom)