Tag Archives: South Pacific Countries

West Papua diplomatic cause advances in Brussels

A coalition of Pacific Island nations has called on the African, Caribbean and Pacific group of states to back West Papuan self-determination.

Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, Nauru, Palau and the Marshall Islands gave a joint statement at the group’s Council of Ministers in Brussels.

Johnny Blades has been following developments.

 

Transcript

JOHNNY BLADES: In Brussels the other day, this  African, Caribbean and Pacific bloc heard from a Vanuatu government MP who was representing this Pacific coalition of seven countries which also is a network of NGO, civil society and church groups as well, who are saying that the world community has to act now on human rights abuses in Papua, but specifically to push Indonesia to have a legitimate self-determination process for the West Papuans, because questions about the legitimacy of the self-determination process by which Papua was incorporated into Indonesia back in the 1960s, questions over that are really gaining momentum at the moment. This follows on from the Coalition’s two recent representations at the UN level on Papua: that is, last September at the UN General Assembly, and then in March at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.

BEN ROBINSON-DRAWBRIDGE: So how did the other countries in this group react to this call from their Pacific members?

JB: The Caribbean and African countries were signalling strong support for this, to have a resolution urging a proper self-determination process for the Papuans. But the Papua New Guinea ambassador at the meeting in Brussels spoke out against it. He actually said that the group shouldn;t push too hard at this. He suggested that a fact-finding mission to Papua is necessary for the African, Caribbean and Pacific group to conduct first in order to get a clearer picture of the situation. Remember PNG of course is right next door to West Papua and its proximity to this huge Asian country is a point of great sensitivity.

BRD: Have other Pacific groups like the Melanesian Spearhead Group or even the Pacific Forum, have they made similar representations on West Papua?

JB: They have attempted to, really. This issue has been brought up at both of those bodies many years ago, and particularly for the Melanesian Spearhead Group it was a huge issue because Melanesians in these countries feel strongly about West Papuan self-determination. It’s just that their leadership have not been able to find a unified position on it. And for instance since Indonesia has come in to the MSG as an observer and now an associate member, this issue has not advanced. So they haven’t been able to take it up at UN or ACP levels. And it’s much the same with the Forum: there’s not a unified stance on it. So the group of seven Pacific countries here who took up the issue in Brussels have really just thought ‘we’ll go ahead and do what we have to on our own’ because the Forum and the MSG, they seem to be saying, have failed on the West Papua issue.

BRD: Do any of the other countries in this (ACP) group, do they have significant political clout to be able to make a difference on this issue?

JB: They aren’t powerhouses on the world stage, most of these countries. But I think if there was to be this bloc of 79 countries suddenly taking it up at the UN General Assembly, that is significant in itself, and it would really add to the international pressure on Jakarta to maybe look for a new kind of solution to this simmering discontent in Papua.

West Papua diplomatic cause advances in Brussels was originally published on PAPUAPost.com

Amunggut Tabi: West Papua Independence is NOT Limited to Peace, Stability and Security in the South Pacific

In response to Indonesia’s strategy approaching the governments in Melanesian countries by providing what it calls “security assistance to poor Melanesian nation-states”, Amunggut Tabi from the West Papua Revolutionary Army says

West Papua independence is not limited to peace, stability and security in the South Pacific region.

Please tell the world, this independence has more to do with wider issues, more lasting aspect, and it has universal benefits to the world. It has to do with the life on this planet Earth and to the life after life, rather than just limited modern nation-state anthropocentric sentiment of peace, security, and economic development in the South Pacific.

When Papua Merdeka News (PMNews) asked to clarify what Gen. Tabi means by his statement above, he says

All human biengs in the world know that New Guinea is the second largest Island on Earth after the Greenland. And all human beings also know that New Guinea is the home to the third largest rain-forests on Earth after the Amazon and Congo rain-forests. All human beings on planet Earth also know that New Guinea is home to the Second Tropical Glacier on Earth. It is home to the worlds species of flora, fauna and human bio-cultural diversity.

Of course, all these have nothing to do with economic growth and gross domestic products and mass production of the modern nation-states in this planet Earth. But one should note, that these facts have things to do with “life” and “death”.

New Guinea is not just full of natural resources to be exploited, as modern people know, but New Guinea has things to offer beyond economy, beyond money, beyond security beyond wealth, beyond prosperity.

Those who ignore or undermine the cause of West Papua independence are the ones who do not understand the real meaning this struggle. Those who support this struggle right now, we believe, receive blessings in their hearts and minds, in their life, because this life and this planet Earth knows that New Guinea is important for our survival.

Gen. Tabi also mentions that New Guinea is the home of all Melanesians.

All Melanesians come from New Guinea, we spread across the island countries from West Papua to Fiji, and all Melanesians have full right to come back to this Island when anything at all happens to the small islands across the South Pacific. We should not put hope on Australia, but New Guinea is our original home and out future home. Imagine when all small islands are threatened to be under water, and New Guinea is fully occupied by Malay-Indos, when will Australia host Melanesians? No, impossible because Australia today is occupied by Europeans, not our brother-Aborigines.

We all Melanesians are fighting in defending our race, and in protecting our home-land from being occupied by foreigners. We are protecting our future, the future of a grandchildren to come.

Amunggut Tabi: West Papua Independence is NOT Limited to Peace, Stability and Security in the South Pacific was originally published on PAPUAPost.com