Issues in West Papua

Abstract The Islands of the Pacific are rich in valuable cultures, traditions and customs in addition to their rich resources and magnificent flora and fauna. We embrace them without regrets today as our pride which we captured them in our decision making level in the political, bureaucratic, and institutional arenas by individual country in our own unique ways. The Islands of the Pacific of course were inhabited by three distinct ethnic groups namely; the Melanesians mostly inhabited the bigger continental Islands lies mostly to the South-west of the Pacific Ocean including the Indigenous people of Australia. Micronesians is the other ethnic group that inhabited the smaller Islands along the equator in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, and the third group is the Polynesians the inhabitants of the Islands South of the equator including the Maoris of the Island of the Long White Cloud now New Zealand.

Historically, the ancestors of the three ethnic groups were the migrants from the West (in this case are refer to the continental islands) which is clearly shown by the existence of the old trading routs and common material distribution and possessions such as the Lapita pottery and other important trading materials. Our people were free people before the Western conquest of the Islands. It was only about a century ago that the Western conquest came to the Pacific and we experienced the bitterness of Western colonization’s fading glory.

We appreciate in one way or another to the Westerners for the hard work done in the past to transform us from once described as savage beasts, barbarians, and Stone Aged people to modernized and decent people contributing in one or another to our nation building. As such, we are bound together as modern and decent people by the 1948 United Nations Declaration of Human Rights giving dignity and equal rights to all human beings in the world. As part of human community in the world we pledge ourselves under our own government to protect, promote and preserve our own kind and our neighbors as independent and free people of the particular country in the pacific.

As such we do not want to experience the repetition of the treatment of the past era upon us and our children or the sectors of our neighbors on our very own eyes in this modern age for such act against us or sectors of our people are considered as inhuman and against the principles of human rights as declared by the United Nations Declaration on Human Rights.

We therefore appeal to the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) member countries of the Pacific to look into the region and uproot any form of Human Rights abuse, or unfinished business of colonialism or any sort of the matter that is being imposed, exercised, or applied to our people (people of the Pacific Islands) by another nation state, or group of people, or of such nature made to rule, govern or dominate our people in such a way that violates the principles set forth by the UN’s Declaration on Human Rights.

We therefore, appeal to the members of the forum to take on board the state imposed human rights abuses in the Papua and West Papua Provinces of Indonesia and the unfinished business of modern day colonialism being imposed in the Melanesian Territories of New Caledonia and the Papua and West Papua provinces of Indonesia.

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