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Media release Australian Foreign Minister Jshould raise West Papua while visiting Indonesia.

March 21, 2016

Australia West Papua Association (Sydney)

PO Box 28, Spit Junction, NSW 2088

Media release 21 March 2016

Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop should raise West Papua while visiting Indonesia.

The Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs Julie Bishop is visiting Indonesian (20 to 23 March).

In Jakarta, the Foreign Minister will meet with her Indonesian counterpart, Foreign Minister Retno Maraud, and other senior ministers. She will formally open Australia’s newly constructed embassy in Jakarta and a new Australian Consulate-General in Makassar.

Joe Collins of AWPA said, “although the usual issues of trade and investment, people smuggling and terrorism will all be discussed, it is hoped that the human rights situation in West Papua will not be left of the agenda. We urge her to raise concerns also about the intimidation of activists and human rights defenders in West Papua who are always in danger of being accused of so called- separatists

We note that the Solomon Islands diplomat in Geneva, Barrett Salato, raised concerns about West Papua recently at the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva telling the Council that human rights violations in West Papua need urgent attention by the world community.

AWPA urges Julie Bishop to follow his example and not only raise the human rights situation in West Papua with the Indonesian Government but to also urge Jakarta to respond favorably to the request by the Pacific Island Forum (PIF) leaders to allow a PIF fact-finding mission to investigate the human rights situation in the territory.


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