Posted : Radio New ZealandInternational
Indonesia Human Rights Committee says its written to the New Zealand foreign minister asking to take a more assertive stand against military violence in Papua.
Marie Leadbetter says reports are emerging from the Paniai District of the Indonesian military committing horrendous violence, firing from helicopters and torching villages.
She says she’s been prompted to write to Murray McCully asking for international intervention to stop the violence and open the area to aid workers and reporters.
She says lessons from Pacific history indicate stronger action is needed.
“Countries like New Zealand and Australia have a very long tradition of putting Indonesia’s interests and Indonesia’s wishes before those of small nations. We’re seeing in West Papua a kind of repeat of the whole sorry saga of East Timor where Australia and New Zealand ignored a brutal occupation for some 24 years.”
Marie Leadbetter says she hopes Mr McCully will take a stand and speak out publicly against Indonesia’s gross violations of human rights in Papua.