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West Papua: Melanesian Indonesian who fight for democracy

Melanesian Indonesian fight for democracy

A very small number of West Papuans continue to fight for separatism with the support of only Vanuatu in the Pacific. In contrast, majority West Papuans continue to push their interest to develop Papua and West Papua democratically. One of their demands is affirmative policy to support Papuan human resources, so they can develop their region in accordance to their culture.

Indonesia’s central and Papuan local governments are working together to make sure that the implementation of democracy and special autonomy will benefit indigenous Papuan and migrants without creating discrimination. Affirmative policy to increase the role of indigenous Papuan is not to discriminate migrants. It should be seen as an efforts for indigenous Papuans to catch up their backwardness due to lack of good education and health facilities in the past.

The difficult terrain in Papua and West Papua is also contributed to slow progress of development. That is why, President Jokowi built so many infrastructures like, roads, airports, and public facilities.

The so called West Papuan grievances regarding social problem has been politicized by conflict provocateur for their agenda to get bigger benefit. For example, the so called West Papuan Freedom leaders abroad cannot support their daily needs if they stop selling Papua conflict for donation. Creating Melanesian sentiment in the pacific to support separatism has been far from success because most eastern part of Indonesia inhabited by Melanesian.

In Papua, Melanesian Indonesian fight for democracy is not the same as fighting for separatism by creating deeper conflict among the population. Democracy here is to channel aspiration of indigenous people, for example, Papua and West Papua governors and regents are indigenous Papuan. Another example is about making sure that special autonomy will increase the living standard of Papuans.

Special autonomy for West Papua, based on Law No.21/2001, is divided into four major categories: (1) greater authority for the local government; (2) recognition and respect for the basic rights of the indigenous West Papuans; (3) accommodation of broader participation by the indigenous West Papuans in good governance, transparency, and accountability; (4) protection and enforcement of human rights, with no exceptions or discrimination, based on equality.

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This Blog has gone through many obstacles and attacks from violent Free West Papua separatist supporters and ultra nationalist Indonesian since 2007. However, it has remained throughout a time devouring thoughts of how to bring peace to Papua and West Papua provinces of Indonesia.

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