Charles Johnson 0

Case of Genocide and Recognition of Papuan Self Determination

56 people have signed this petition. Add your name now!
Charles Johnson 0 Comments
56 people have signed. Add your voice!
Maxine K. signed just now
Adam B. signed just now

A Case for Genocide It is a honor and a privilege, Sir, to be able to address you. I want to extend my appreciation and support for your continued efforts on behalf of our homeland, the United States of America. I also wish to present you this briefing about the current situation in West Papua and about the demands of its persecuted people. I have deep empathy for the work you do, as I am aware that being in such high level position, one endures great pressure and must take decisions considering numerous variables and complex equations. I represent the Foreign Affairs Council for West Papua, a selected, (small) group integrated by members with political weight and legal knowledge, as well as with diplomatic ties and contacts in the United Nations and in the International Governmental community. Other members have military, special force and Intelligence experience. The group also has decisive West Papuan representation. As an Advisory Marschall to the West Papua United Liberation Forces, we are also a voice for its people. It is indeed a daunting task to deal with this issue in a manner that is beneficial to both the United States relations and the West Papuans' interests. Yet, it is a strategic task, as well as a humanitarian one, that should not be postponed, as the crisis in the country could worsen even more at any moment, provoking even more bloodshed, than the one that has already being occurring since 1969. However, in order to procure an integral view of the current situation in West Papua, a chronology of events should be mentioned beforehand. Although, given your personal link to Indonesia, I am sure your knowledge greatly exceeds mine. As described by the United Nations West New Guinea background report: "Since 1828, West New Guinea (West Irian) had belonged to The Netherlands. In 1949, this European country formally recognized the sovereign Independence of Indonesia; but the status of West Irian remained unresolved. In the Charter of Transfer of Sovereignty C concluded between The Netherlands and Indonesia at The Hague in November 1949, it was agreed that the resolution of this issue would be postponed for a year. It also was stated, then, that "the status quo of the Presidency of New Guinea" would be "maintained under the Government of the Netherlands" in the meatime. However, the ambiguity of the language led the Netherlands to consider itself the Sovereign Power of West New Guinea, as a continuation of the "status quo". Indonesia, on the other hand, interpreted the Dutch role there to be strictly administrative with the implication that West Irian would be incorporated into Indonesia after a year." These proceedings concluded in 1962 when Ambassador Ellswort Bunker's proposal pressured the Dutch to transfer the control of West Papua to the United Nations. Indonesia was to make arrangements in conjunction with the United Nations, allowing Papuans the opportunity for their self determination. However, in 1969, when the Act of No Choice was carried out, 1,025 West Papuan elders were selected and subjected to heavy millitary surveillance, threatened by gun barrel and forced to vote on West Papua's political status, status that has resulted in the continued oppression and slow, but steady genocide of the West Papuan people. On September 22, 2010, the United States Congress held a preliminary hearing on West Papua. In his conclusions, U.S Delegate Eni Faleomavaega stated, "This hearing is the first hearing ever held in the United States Congress that gives voice to the people of West Papua. Since 1969, the people of West Papua have been deliberately and systematically subjected to slow motion genocide, in my humble opinion, by Indonesian military forces and yet Indonesia declares that the issue is an internal matter, while the United States Department of State recognizes and respects the territorial integrity of Indonesia." Mr President, similar conclusions have been reached by the United Kingdom Parlament in the Foreign Affairs Council headed by Sir Andrew Smith MP and Madam Caroline Lucas . The human rights situation in West Papua has not improved, but only continues to deteriorate, specially in the past year. One incident in particular, shown on a shocking video of West Papuans being tortured by Indonesian soldiers, highlighted the deteriorating Human Rights crisis of this country. The footage showed several Indonesian soldiers torturing two Papuans, threatening them with sharp weapons and pressing a burning bamboo stick against one of the men’s genitals. The torture of these men has prompted a wave of international criticism. Numerous Human Rights Organizations have condemned the actions of the Indonesian Military. The incident, however, is not an isolated event. Just last week a video, banned by youtube, showed a Papuan's intestines being sliced from his belly by an Indonesian solidier's bayonet. Several military operations continue throughout West Papua, as they have in the Puncak Jaya Region for the past several years, leaving local people traumatized and terrified for their lives. Security forces regularly conduct sweeps in the area to pursue members of the Liberation Forces. Many reports have pointed their undiscrimatory policies that lead them not distinguish between separatists and the general public. Reports accused the police of burning down the village of Bigiragi in the Puncak Jaya district. The report said that 16 Mobile Brigade officers burned the village to the ground on October 11, destroying 29 homes and leaving an estimated of 150 people homeless. In September 2010, the House of Representatives (DPR) Law Commission Deputy Chairman, Tjatur Sapto Edy lamented the military operations in the Puncak Jaya Regency, following a report by the National Commission for Human Rights (Komnas HAM). Tjatur declared there should be no more military operations and that such approaches were no longer suitable in a democracy. A report by Komnas HAM’s Papua Chapter revealed 29 cases of Human Right abuses occurring in Puncak Jaya Regency from 2004-2010, including the torture and rape of villagers by law enforcers in March 2010. There have also been reports of Christian persecution by Islamic fundamentalists. Pictures of entire groups of people burned to death by these extremists have been displayed. The Republic of Indonesia Legislation Number 39 of 1999, concerning Human Rights states: Article 4 The right to life, the right to not to be tortured, the right to freedom of the individual, to freedom of thought and conscience, the right not to be enslaved, the right to be acknowledged as an individual before the law, and the right not to be prosecuted retroactively under the law are human rights that cannot be diminished under any circumstances whatsoever. Article 6 (1) In the interests of upholding human rights, the differences and needs of indigenous peoples must be taken into consideration and protected by the law, the public and the Government. (2) The cultural identity of indigenous peoples, including indigenous land rights, must be upheld, in accordance with the development of the times. These laws are certainly not being respected or upheld by the Indonesian Government, nor by the Indonesian Military. In fact, these laws are being violated on a daily basis in West Papua. In the name of the West Papuan people, we voice their earnest desire and demand for the respect and recognition of their right to self determination. Truth is that these people are currently on the verge of a revolution. They have repeatedly been asking funds to several support groups, including our own, in order to be able to acquire heavy arms and additional supplies. Moreover, 'Soldiers of Fortune' are currently entering the conflicted Region in order to train the Liberation Forces. Some of these 'soldiers of fortune' have a good and honorable will to help; unfortunately, others simply become another force of exploitation. Yet, West Papuans are so desperate for international recognition, for aid and protection against their criminal oppressors, that even 'soldiers of fortune' that show up with a clear intent of exploitation are welcomed! Mr President, there are other key pieces on this chess board for you to consider: 1. American corporations, such as Freeport McMoran have been cited as being involved in giving support for the West Papuan genocide. 2. Neither China nor Russia have signed agreements for the rights to exploitation of Indonesian minerals, nor for the rights for exploration and drilling. Yet, the Indonesian Government has unlawfully agreed on such deals on West Papuan Territory with both countries. The incersion of former communists regimes, far from improving, can only worsen and further the conflict in West Papua even more. 3. Indonesia has the second largest Islamic population in the world. 4. Strategic positioning in the South East Asia Region is crucial for the United States to maintain. However, as Russia and China become more rooted, and as the Islamic Faith spreads further into West Papua, the United States will loose this key position. Our Foreign Affairs Council for West Papua intends to achieve the following goals: 1. Organize Aid for Humanitarian support 2. Encourage the International Community to support and recognize West Papua's right to its self determination 3. Create, with the support of the United Nations, a Commission for the Investigation of criminal activities of certain International Corporations operating in the West Papua Region, activities which are in clear violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and of current laws. 4. Investigate enviromental damaging effects on climate change caused by and related to industrial pollution 5. Ascertain the situation in the Region in regards to the current upraisal movement towards Revolution of many West Papuan Freedom Groups. To conclude brief, descriptive presentation I quote the agreement reached by the United States Congressional Hearing: "It is an indisputable fact that Indonesia has systematically committed crimes against humanity and has never been held accountable and continues those crimes to this day." Mr. President, it is understandable that the West Papua crisis poses a great challenge for you, for our country. It seems that certain determinations and judgements regarding this situation already exist. Yet, when considering any people's plea, one has to ask oneself, when making the decisions, what if it were my grandmother, my mother, or my children or oneself enduring such defying, cruel conditions? Our country has the ability to exert pressure upon Indonesia to force its Government and its Military to keep true to their own words and to uphold and respect the original 1962 agreement to provide the West Papuan people the ability to demonstrate and enjoy, without fear, their own self determination. Even today our government has asked "What provisions, Indonesia, are you providing to uphold your own agreement allowing West Papua the right to self determination." This question has not only not been answered, but fear tactics, terrorism, torture, criminal activity against humanity are being committed and continue to be committed by the Indonesian Military in West Papua against innocent civilians and are being specially harsh and cruel to Christians. Mr President, we respectfully request you to allow our group, or another group, the ability to build an aid organization on behalf of the West Papuan people, or to formally join an already existing one, recognized by the United States Government. We would appreciate if you could allow us to seek the means to investigate the 'Crimes Against Humanity' perpetrated against the West Papuan population, as witnesses and cruel videos clearly testify to. We respectfully request the United States' recognition of West Papua right to self determination. We would gratefully appreciate an answer to our letter, so that the West Papuan people get an assurance that they are at least being heard by the greatest country in the World, and that their existence and the inhumane situation they are currently going through is being acknowledged

Share for Success