Jayapura, Jubi – The United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) has commended the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Tonga, Hon. Akilisi Pohiva, and the Prime Minister of the Solomon Islands, Hon. Manasseh Sogavare, for supporting West Papua at the recent 70th United Nations General Assembly in New York.
ULMWP spokesperson, Benny Wenda, expressed his deepest gratitude to the Pacific leaders and their people, saying, “on behalf of the people of West Papua, we the United Liberation Movement for West Papua would like to convey all our deepest and most sincere gratitude to our Pacific leaders for being the sole moral voices on West Papua at the United Nations.”
Wenda added, the people of West Papua listened to both of leaders historic speeches at the UN, which have brought great hope, emotion and positivity, which has displayed true Pacific solidarity for our people.
“West Papuan always feel a strong and unbreakable connection to our fellow Pacific family, and the bold statements by both prime ministers from the Pacific have confirmed real Pacific solidarity,” said Wenda.
Wenda emphasized the lead taken by Tonga and the Solomon Islands is promising, and is calling on other Pacific leaders to support the call by our Pacific leaders to hold talks with Indonesia for a fact finding mission to West Papua.
“We acknowledge and thank our Pacific leaders and people for assisting us to be recognized at the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG). The tremendous support has taken the issue of West Papua to the agenda of the PIF leaders, and we welcome the call for a fact finding mission and will work closely with our Pacific leaders on this mission.”
The ULMWP recognize the support of PIF leaders and note other significant historical efforts by Pacific Island nations notably Vanuatu, Nauru and Tuvalu to support the right to self determination of West Papua at the United Nations and regionally.
Indonesia in its right to reply to both Tonga and the Solomon Islands at the UNGA strongly rejects the references to human rights issues in West Papua and have labelled them dangerously misleading. While Indonesia denied these human right abuses, violations continued in Papua.
At 7:00pm on the 28th of September, two high school students were shot at the market in Timika town. One of the student died the other on was taken to hospital.
Meanwhile, General Secretary of ULMWP, Octovianus Mote added that contradiction between official denial and reality indeed calls for a fact finding mission as requested by the both Prime Ministers.
“We support the PIF leaders’ decision for an independent fact finding mission as the only way to verify independently the human rights situation on the ground. We urge the UN to support PIF to set up a human rights fact finding mission.”
Since the Prime Ministers Pohiva and Sogavare respective addresses at the UN, there have been jubilant responses and positivity from West Papuans globally despite the ongoing military assault on West Papuan including the most recent death of two youths.
“We desperately need the help of our Pacific family for the people of West Papua continue to suffer under the illegal Indonesian occupation.”
Within the past year in West Papua highland, there have been at least six cases of shootings of civilians in Papua by soldiers or members of the police force, according to the news report. A total of ten people have died as a result.
“The cases have not yet been completely solved. In addition to a lack of transparency in handling the cases, it seems there is no good will or seriousness from police and army leadership. Therefore, the culprits have never been caught,” the bishop of Timika, Monsignor John Philip Saklil Pr said to Jubi last month.
The worst of these shootings occurred on Dec. 8, 2014, when four teenagers were allegedly shot and killed by members of the security forces, as hundreds of people were protesting outside a military installation in Enarotali, a town in Paniai regency. The crowd was riled up by reports that some servicemen had fought with some local teens the night before.
The second was the attack against Army members in Ugapuga town of Dogiyai Regency on June 26, that saw one dead. The third was an attack by six National Police’s Mobile Brigade Unit members on local residents of Bilogai, Intan Jaya Regency, on July 17. The shooting in Tolikara during Idul Fitri prayer that killed one and injured ten others was the fourth. Then the fifth was the one at Koperapoka church which killed two tenagers. The last one was the Gorong-Gorong incident. One died and some peoples injured.
“The absence of a serious and sincere effort on their side gives the impression that both institutions are no longer serving the public. They are no more than the protector of immoral criminals,” the bishop said.
The human rights situation is deteriorating and it is estimated that over 500,000 West Papuan people have been killed ever since the territory was occupied in 1961. (Victor Mambor)