Armed conflict in West Papua spreads across new regencies - Indo Govt still rejects peace dialogue

The armed conflict in West Papua has continuously aggravated since December 2018. In the past months, the conflict has spread to the Papuan regencies Yahukimo and Pegunungan Bintang. An armed attack on a military post was also reported from the Maybrat Regency in the Papua Barat Province, which has been almost unaffected by such attacks. Multiple new incidents involving civilian casualties indicate that the armed conflict in the three regencies will deteriorate in the coming weeks. First indications for the spreading of the armed conflict to Yahukimo, Pegunungan Bintang and Maybrat were already observed in May 2021.

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18 September 2021 marks end of palm oil moratorium in Indonesia – NGOs demand extension

On 19 September 2018, President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) signed presidential instruction No 8/2018 concerning Suspension and Evaluation of Oil Palm Plantation Permits and Increase of Oil Palm Plantation Productivity, also known as the “Oil Palm Moratorium”. The moratorium officially ended on 18 September 2021. Environmental observers and NGOs have called upon President Jokowi to extend the moratorium, arguing that the Government has not yet achieved the given targets stipulated in the moratorium. The Palm Oil Moratorium Coalition has launched a petition for the extension of the Oil Palm Moratorium on Change.org.

Sign Change.org petition for an extension of palm oil moratorium

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School in Jayawijaya alleged of receiving government funds despite not operating for 5 years

The Papuan media outlet Suara Papua has revealed another example of alleged misappropriation of education funds. The Taela Primary School in the Tealarek District of Jayawijaya Regency (see photo, source: Suara Papua), Papua Province, has not been operational since 2016. According to local observers, the school continues to receive government education funds. Multiple attempts to report the alleged misappropriation to the education department in Jayawijaya have failed.

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ACP's letter to OHCHR calls for independent human rights mission to West Papua

The Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS or ACP) has sent a letter to the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). In the letter, the Solomon Islands Foreign Affairs Minister and President-in-Office of the OACPS Council of Ministers, Jeremiah Manele, called upon the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to push for "an urgent mission to West Papua to provide an evidence-based, informed report on the human rights situation". The ACP affirmed that it recognises Indonesia's sovereignty over West Papua but considers the request part of its commitment to human rights, the rule of law, and democratic principles.

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New TAPOL Report available - West Papua 2020: online and offline attacks against freedom of expression and assembly in the region

Press Release
London, 16th September 2021

Peaceful demonstrators, student activists, West Papuan and Indonesian political activist groups, human rights lawyers and defenders and individual civilians experienced extreme repression for their involvement in peaceful demonstrations and meetings in 2020 in West Papua and outside West Papua.

Download full report

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Situation in Maybrat Regency – Army arrests two Papuans in Kisor

The military has started to conduct raids around the Kisor Village area following the killing of four military members on 2 September 2021. Shortly after the incident, the villagers in Kisor, Aifat Selatan District, fled their homes in fear of reprisals by security force members. On 2 September 2021, members of the 762/VYS military battalion and the 1809 Maybrat Military Command (Kodim 1809 Maybrat) reportedly arrested Simon Waymbewer, 26, and Maikel Yaam, 17 years (see photo on top, source: Suara Papua). They are reportedly detained at the Sorong Selatan District Police Station. The West Papua National Liberation Army (TPN-PB) spokesperson claims responsibility for the attack against the military post declared that Simon Waymbewer and Maikel Yaam are civilians and neither affiliated with the TPN-PB nor involved in the killings.

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Human rights coalition publishes report about situation of IDPs in Maybrat – at least 2,086 internally displaced

A human rights coalition consisting of Papuan faith-based organisations and NGOs has published a new report about internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the Maybrat regency.  They have fled their homes in response to a widespread security force operation. According to the report, at least 2,086 indigenous Papuans from more than 36 villages (see photo) in the districts Aifat Selatan, Aifat Timur Selatan, Aifat Timur Tengah, Aifat Timur and Aifat have been internally displaced. Sixty-nine IDPs were reported to be below the age of five. Eleven IDPs became sick and stayed in refugee shelters without healthcare services (see table below).

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Indigenous peoples flee their homes in fear of military raids in Maybrat Regency, Papua Barat Province

The West Papua National Liberation Army (TPN PB) has claimed responsibility for killing four soldiers (see photo, source: Suara Papua) in the Kisor Village, Maybrat Regency, on 2 September 2021. Two soldiers were seriously injured during the attack. According to the media outlet Suara Papua, villagers in Kisor fled their homes in fear of military raids in response to the armed attack against the military post in Kisor. According to the KODAM XVIII Military Command spokesperson, Hendra Pesireron, two additional platoons have already been deployed to Maybrat. They should find and arrest the perpetrators.

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IDPs situation in Maybrat Regency – Observers estimate number of IDPs rises to 3,000

Local observers have estimated that the number of IDPs in the Maybrat Regency has risen to almost 3,000. Shortly after the killing of four military members on 2 September 2021 in the Kisor Village, an estimated number of 2,000 people from eight villages in the Aifat Selatan District and three neighbouring districts reportedly fled their homes in fear of military raids. Meanwhile, the number of affected villages in Aifat Selatan has reportedly grown to at least 16 villages (see list below) in Aifat Selatan alone. New displacements were reported from the Aitinyo District. Some IDPs sought shelter in the villages Susmuk, Aitinyo and Sabun, while most IDPs built temporary shelters in the jungle (see photos on bottom, source: independent human rights defenders).

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Security force operation in Dekai accompanied by arbitrary arrest and torture

Joint security forces reportedly conducted a raid in the town of Dekai, Yahukimo Regency, on 28 August 2021. According to Papuan media outlet Jubi, security force members arrested eight indigenous Papuans near the Kurima Kali Biro Road. One of the arrestees is the head of the Wusama District, Mr Etius Baye. He was allegedly tortured during the arrest. According to witness testimony, a security force member questioned Mr Baye at gunpoint and subsequently stroke him with the weapon into the face. Etius Baye sustained a bleeding wound on the forehead as a result of the torture.

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More Articles...

  1. At least 4,862 indigenous Papuans internally displaced in Puncak Regency
  2. New NGO report reveals relationships between military deployment and economic interests in West Papua
  3. Mongabay: UNESCO calls for closure of road running through World Heritage park in Papua
  4. Health condition of Victor Yeimo – Judge allows Yeimo's access to medical treatment
  5. UN Special Rapporteurs initiate communication with Indonesian Govt in relation to prosecution of Victor Yeimo
  6. Update on trials against Papuan human rights activist Victor Yeimo – Public Prosecutor again hampers access to medical treatment
  7. Papuan protestor dies in hospital after being shot by security force members in Yahukimo
  8. Police operation in Yapen Island causes displacement of 215 villagers
  9. Papuan Govt recommends withdrawal of 35 palm oil licenses
  10. Security forces crack-down on peaceful protests for release of Victor Yeimo – 49 protesters arrested, 19 tortured, one shot
  11. Call for Solidarity Action: Free Victor Yeimo
  12. Update on prosecution of Papuan human rights activist - Victor Yeimo’s health worsened during detention
  13. Chairperson of journalist association in Jayapura intimidated
  14. Protests for release of Victor Yeimo – 14 students arrested and temporarily detained
  15. Event Notice: Pacific Education and Advocacy Festival
  16. The Guardian: Merauke Police chief alleged of torture was trained in Australia funded law enforcement facility
  17. Nationalist organisation reports Bali Legal Aid Institute and four Papuan students to police
  18. The Oneibo Shooting – Another example of widespread impunity among security forces in West Papua
  19. Police officer opens fire at Papuan villager – Angry mob burn down Nimboran police station
  20. New YLBHI research on police misconduct in Indonesia
  21. Police officer opens fire at indigenous villager in Sorong Selatan
  22. Military members arrest 12 Papuans in Skofro – 9 arrestees alleged of affiliation with the TPN PB
  23. Torture of Papuan man in Nabire again captured on video – Security force violence is rampant in West Papua
  24. Two military members torture disabled Papuan in Merauke – Video goes viral on social media
  25. Paham Papua calls upon military to be transparent about prosecution of perpetrators
  26. Trial against 2 AMP members in Jakarta – Activists sentenced to 5 months imprisonment
  27. Military member opens fire at villager in Mappi Regency
  28. Officers torture son of Papuan church leader during police patrol in Padang Bulan, Jayapura
  29. Further peaceful protest against Papuan Special Autonomy dispersed – 36 protesters arrested in Sorong
  30. Korean palm oil producer Korindo looses FSC certification

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