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Papuan protestors forcibly dispersed by Indonesian police

West Papuans protest against racism in Wamena, August 2019. Photo: Supplied. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

JAKARTA, Sep 28, 2020, RNZ. Indonesian police have forcibly dispersed hundreds of West Papuan university students holding a demonstration in Jayapura. The students were peacefully protesting against the extension of special autonomy status in the Indonesian-ruled propvinces of Papua, Radio New Zealand reported.

The demonstration at the Cenderawasih University was broken up by dozens of armed police, as shots were heard being fired.

It’s the latest in a series of demonstrations against special autonomy around cities in Papua and elsewhere in Indonesia.

Reports from region last week said hundreds of demonstrators were arrested at different locations across Nabire regency.

A spokesperson for Indonesia’s government said that in order to curb the spread of Covid-19 strict health protocols were being applied across the country.

This included restrictions on gatherings to a maximum of 50 people.

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