"West Papua is the next East Timor" from the home page of
Religious and racial divisions:
The island of New Guinea is also called Papua.
The western half is controlled by Indonesia. The area is
called Irian Jaya by the Indonesians and West Papua by
the native Papuans.
The eastern half of the island is the Independent State of Papua New Guinea.
Although the population of Papua only constitutes about 0.01% of the
world's population, it contains an amazing 15% of the world's known languages!
The citizens belong to about 312 tribes including some uncontacted peoples. 1 As a result
of past Dutch colonial rule, most of the people follow either Aboriginal or Christian
Indigenous religion: 34%
Roman Catholicism: 22%
Protestants (Lutheran): 16%
Other Protestants: 28% 1,2
The people of the Republic of Indonesia as a whole
are primarily Muslim:
Protestant Christianity: 5%
Roman Catholicism: 3%.
Buddhism: 1% 2
The people of Papua are
ethnically distinct from the general population of Indonesia. It is
impossible to differentiate among ethnic, religious, and economic motivations for the
Papuan's maltreatment by Indonesians.
This essay continues below.
Mass crimes against humanity:
The Independent State of Papua New Guinea is experiencing cross-border
incursions by some Indonesians. However, West Papua -- the western half of the
island -- is experiencing wide-spread genocide.
According to Survival-International: "All the
Papuan peoples have suffered greatly under the Indonesian occupation which has
been in force since 1963. The Indonesian army has a long history of human rights
violations against the Papuans, and the racist Indonesian soldiers generally
view the Papuan people as little more than animals. Papua's natural resources
are being exploited at great profit for the Indonesian government and foreign
businesses, but at the expense of the Papuan peoples and their homelands. When
international companies come to Papua the Indonesian military accompanies them
to 'protect' the 'vital projects': with the military there always come human
rights violations such as killings, arbitrary arrests, rape and torture. Those
Papuans who protest against the Indonesian government, the military or 'vital
projects' are even more likely to experience abuses of their human rights."
3,4,5,6 An estimated
100,000 of them were killed by the Indonesian armed forces between 1963 and
2002. 5 The mass
murder continues to the present time.
On 2003-DEC-10, The Orville H. Schell, Jr.
Center for International Human Rights and the Allard K. Lowenstein
International Human Rights Clinic and Projectat Yale
Law School issued a report denouncing human rights abuses in Papua. 7 They concluded that the
historical and contemporary evidence "strongly suggests that the Indonesian
government has committed proscribed acts with the intent to destroy the West
Papuans...in violation of the 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment
of the Crime of Genocide.....The Indonesian military and security
forces have engaged in widespread violence and extra-judicial killings in West
Papua. They have subjected Papuan men and women to acts of torture,
disappearance, rape, and sexual violence, thus causing serious bodily and mental
harm. Systematic resource exploitation, the destruction of Papuan resources and
crops, compulsory (and often uncompensated) labor, transmigration schemes, and
forced relocation have caused pervasive environmental harm to the region,
undermined traditional subsistence practices, and led to widespread disease,
malnutrition, and death among West Papuans. Such acts, taken as a whole, appear
to constitute the imposition of conditions of life calculated to bring about the
destruction of the West Papuans. Many of these acts, individually and
collectively, clearly constitute crimes against humanity under international
The land appears to be rich in resources: gold,
copper, nickel, oil, timber, etc.
As in East Timor, about 30% of the population
appears to have "simply vanished from the face of this earth." One site
documents eight known air bombardments, 112 murders and massacres, and 13
disappearances. 10 There are suggestions that the
Indonesian government has introduced biological warfare against insurrgants in
the area, through the spread of tapeworm-infected pigs. 11
Their report ends with a plea: "These peoples' last and only hope is you.
Governments don't want to know or care." 10
"Indonesian Human Rights Abuses in West Papua: Application of the Law
of Genocide to the History of Indonesian Control," Yale Law School,
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