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Indonesia .. Papua demands rise to self-determination and the government seeks to contain

2019-08-22T16:11:27.676Z



Suhaib Jassim and Ahmed Tirmidhi-Jakarta

Demonstrations have continued since Monday in eastern Indonesia and turned into riots. Authorities cut off contacts under the pretext of reducing the spread of "incitement messages" as the government tries to contain the crisis with dialogue, apologies and promises of development.

The Indonesian Ministry of Information announced that the Internet was cut off from the provinces of Papua and West Papua (eastern Indonesia), and explained this by minimizing what it described as incitement messages, stressing that this situation will remain until the situation returns to stability.

Demonstrations against Papua students in two incidents east of Java island last week continued into riots and burning of buildings, public institutions and markets, including Manokwari, Jaya Bora, Sorong, Mimika, Nabire and Yahokimo.

Demonstrations are expected to continue in the coming days, as their slogans rise to the political status of Papua's autonomous regions, prompting police to mobilize more from other provinces in recent hours.

The demonstrations moved from Papua today to reach the city of Bandung, West Java, Makassar, and even the state of East Timor, which broke away from Indonesia 20 years ago.

Demonstrators' demands
In Jakarta, hundreds of Papua students' alliance staged a protest demanding a referendum to decide the fate of Indonesia's two easternmost provinces, which have been undergoing separatist movement for decades.

Today's demonstration is one of the largest demonstrations organized by Papua students in Jakarta for many years, and distributed a statement describing Indonesian rule by colonialism.

In their statement, the students made about twenty demands, including the refusal to extend the current autonomy, the prosecution or dismissal of security and military personnel and officials who had been involved in what happened to Papua students recently, condemning the "racist" rhetoric against the papal people, respecting the right of assembly and freedom of expression, and allowing journalists to cover Events in Papua, the withdrawal of military forces from areas experiencing tension.

Demonstrations began Monday in Papua (Reuters)

Government delegation
The government, for its part, promised to deal legally with those accused by Papua students of insulting their colleagues in the cities of Surabaya and Malang last week, after the governor of East Java province apologized and announced several cooperative initiatives with Papua and West Papua provinces.

The Indonesian government is expected to launch a comprehensive dialogue to get out of the crisis, which suddenly exploded amid the preoccupation of the Indonesian elite to share the sheep of winning the presidential elections and the distribution of portfolios.

The first official from the central government to visit Papua and West Papua provinces was the Coordinating Minister for Security, Political and Legal Affairs, retired General and Jarinto, along with the Chief of Police and Chief of Staff of the Indonesian Army, where they met community leaders, clerics and local officials in Sorong. Others in eastern Indonesia.

The government delegation received many demands, including the arbitration of customs and traditions and the invitation of Indonesian President Jukwe to expedite the visit of Papua to defuse the crisis.

In his latest statement, Jokwe announced that he had instructed the police to deal firmly with those involved in racial or ethnic discrimination and said he was following developments in Papua.

"Praise be to God, the situation is returning to normal, and the apology was made to emphasize the breadth of our chest, our pardon, our mutual respect and our appreciation to our brothers, and we share the land and the homeland."

Jokoy also promised to invite Papua leaders of tribal, religious and political figures to the presidential palace next week to talk about the situation in Papua and accelerate its development.

Source: aljazeera

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