Papuans face violence, detentions, threats: US State Dept report

Photo: RNZI

JAKARTA, Mar 17, 2019, RNZI. A new US government report has found West Papuans continue to face violence, politically-motivated detentions and threats in Indonesia. The findings were part of a State Department review of Indonesia’s human rights conduct last year, reported the RNZI.

The report, released on Wednesday, found clashes involving police, military and indigenous communities in Papua and West Papua continued in 2018.

It said state accountability had been hampered by a lack of transparent investigations into past human rights abuses.

On Wednesday, Indonesia’s representative to the UN said these violations continued to be dealt with by the Attorney-General.

The US State Department report said a number of Papuans were briefly detained for peacefully expressing political views.

“Papuan NGOs and activists received threatening phone messages and reported continuous harassment by local police.”

The report added that would-be demonstrators were refused permits by Police in Papua because they were likely to make calls for independence, which is prohibited in Indonesia.

“Restrictions on foreign journalists travelling to Papua and West Papua Provinces remained,” it said.

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