West Papua: Global actions demand Indonesia grant media, activists free access

Photo by Chris Peterson.

A global day of action on April 29 involved protests in several cities to call on the Indonesian government to allow free and open access into occupied West Papua for international journalists, humanitarian agencies and human rights groups.

Melbourne rally co-organiser said Matt Gale said: “West Papua is one of the world’s most isolated conflict spots. For decades, indigenous activists campaigning for their rights have been arrested, disappeared, tortured and killed.

“Local journalists who uncover the truth face lethal risks. Foreign journalists trying to report on Papua have been arrested, deported and even imprisoned. One by one, international humanitarian organisations have closed their Papua offices. Access for UN human rights observers has been closed for eight years.

“Until Indonesia lifts the repressive restrictions on access to Papua, Indonesian security forces and paramilitaries are free to act with total impunity, and indigenous Papuans will continue to be killed.”

West Papua Media said:“At the end of March 2015, there were at least 38 political prisoners in Papuan jails.”

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