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Issue #1593      May 15, 2013

Pro Papua open letter to the Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs Frans Timmermans about the 1 May crackdown in Papua

The Minister of Foreign Affairs
Dr FCGM Timmermans
The Hague

Dear Minister Timmermans,

Foundation Pro Papua strongly asks you to note and condemn the Indonesian government security forces assault on peaceful May 1 demonstrations by Papuans. Widespread non-violent Papuan demonstrations commemorating the 50th anniversary of Indonesia’s coercive annexation of West Papua in 1963 were met with security force brutality resulting in the killing of two Papuans and the wounding and detention of many more.

UN Human Rights Commissioner Pillay’s May 2 statement regarding the violence expressed “serious concern” over the “crackdown”. The statement cited UN Human Rights High Commissioner as stating: “These latest incidents are unfortunate examples of the on-going suppression of freedom of expression and excessive use of force in Papua. I urge the government of Indonesia to allow peaceful protest and hold accountable those involved in abuses.”

Pro Papua, noting the close relations between The Hague and Jakarta, call on the Dutch Government to press the Indonesian government to end its suppression of freedom of speech in West Papua and to hold accountable before civilian courts those responsible for violence against civilian demonstrators.

We think that you should also press the Indonesian government to allow visits by UN Human Rights Special Rapporteurs, as the Indonesian government agreed to do in late 2012.

On behalf of
Foundation Pro Papua,
Koen J de Jager

Next article – The smallholders’ last stand

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