The Age: It’s time for some straight talking about human rights in Papua

Tom Clarke

The Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, should use his visit to Indonesia on Monday to cast aside the wilful blindness previous Australian governments have had about the human rights violations occurring just a stone’s throw away in Indonesia’s Papua provinces.

The arrival and then hasty removal of seven West Papuan asylum seekers this week highlights the need to ensure our relationship with Indonesia is mature enough to handle two-way exchanges of fair criticisms when it comes to human rights.

Obviously, any human rights advocacy on Australia’s behalf risks being diminished when we are perceived to be turning our back on our own obligations or passing the buck, as is the case with the government’s asylum seeker policies. Despite this, there are simple steps Australia could take to provide leadership in this area in our region.

Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/comment/its-time-for-some-straight-talking-about-human-rights-in-papua-20130928-2ul8k.html#ixzz2gFubIQX2

 

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