Monday, April 03, 2006

Papuans 'vanishing' after mine protest

The Age reports "at least 11 West Papuans have disappeared during reprisals by Indonesian authorities following a recent violent demonstration, it was claimed yesterday.

Reverend Peter Woods, an Anglican minister recently returned from West Papua, told a rally in Melbourne yesterday that a man was shot in the stomach while sitting in his house.

The rally was called to welcome 42 Papuan asylum seekers on Christmas Island who were given temporary protection visas almost two weeks ago.

The reprisals followed a demonstration two weeks ago outside a university over West Papua's Freeport mine which resulted in the deaths of five Indonesian security officers."

The Indonesian grip on Papua must be loosened. Ex-diplomats and assorted 'experts' on Indonesia are coming out of the woodwork to warn against this happening. Some have suggested that the 42 asylum seekers should have been sent to Nauru. It should be noted that some of these apologists for Indonesian hegemony have been complicit in shaping Australia's appalling policy of turning a blind eye to this tragedy for a long time. Now they are proposing that people fleeing repression be subjected to the living hell of the Pacific Solution. I guess turning their backs on the plight of our melanesian neighbours became easier as they got the hang of it...

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