Uncle Kevin Buzzacott and the West Papua Freedom Flotilla will be participating in the West Papua Freedom Forum in Darwin in July on the anniversary of the Biak Massacre with a focus on Indigenous networking between Australia and West Papua.
Larrakia and Arabunna Aboriginal Elders June Mills and Uncle Kevin Buzzacott, along with Australian West Papua organizations, Indigenous groups and non-indigenous supporters will converge at the forum from the 4th to the 6th of July to participate in workshops, talk, storytelling and musical performance.
Exiled West Papuan leader, former political prisoner and member of the United Liberation Movement for West Papua, Jacob Rumbiak, will also attend the Freedom Forum after returning from the Solomon Islands where he has been facilitating West Papua’s submission for membership into powerful regional body, the Melanesian Spearhead Group.
“We work for world peace and justice, we start from our region, the Pacific.” Mr Rumbiak said.
Uncle Kevin Buzzacott has confirmed that the West Papua Freedom Forum will result in a public statement and action plan to commemorate the Biak Massacre atrocities in which more than 150 people were brutally tortured, killed and their bodies dumped at sea, after a pro-independence protest on the northern West Papuan island of Biak in July, 1998.
“We can’t have this murder on our doorstep. We must contest the Indonesian authority. We must free West Papua at all cost.” Mr Buzzacott said.
Flotilla Media Contact for Freedom Forum:
Uncle Kevin Buzzacott, Arabunna Elder 0431157747
West Papua Freedom Flotilla spokesperson Izzy Brown has confirmed that the Freedom Flotilla will set sail from Darwin this year to undertake their latest direct action on the high seas to highlight damage caused by multinational corporations and colonial governments on the land and people of West Papua, specifically targeting major shareholder Rio Tinto and the Freeport Grasberg mine in Timika.
”We’re targeting Rio Tinto and the Freeport Grasberg mine because the genocide they are committing on the West Papuan people is disgusting. Not only are they funding the Indonesian military to kill indigenous West Papuans, they are also poisoning the land and water beyond repair and disregarding global environmental standards,” Ms Brown said.
The Freedom Flotilla to West Papua successfully defied the Indonesian Navy and Australian authorities in 2013 when they completed their mission to reconnect West Papuan and Aboriginal Peoples.
After a 5000 kilometre journey from Lake Eyre in South Australia all the way to the so-called Indonesian border north off the Torres Strait Arabunna Elder, Uncle Kevin Buzzacott, delivered sacred water from his own country and ashes from Aboriginal tent embassies around Australia directly to West Papuan leaders.
The secret ceremony took place between two small boats off the south coast of Papua, avoided interception by authorities and gained global media attention putting West Papuan issues in the spotlight.
“I can see the light in your eyes, it rained briefly before and in our culture this is a cleansing of our spirits and the fire here burning gives us warmth and we together bring energy and hope to our struggles”
– west papuan leader speaking
near the sacred fire, Musgrave Park,
Brisbane 5 pm 30 July 2013...read more
Article from the Worker Bush Telegraph
This event was part of the ‘Freedom Flotilla to West Papua’, an epic 5,000 km journey from Lake Eyre in South Australia to West Papua, which aims to draw international attention to the crisis in Papua where Indonesian military and multinational corporations are complicit in crimes against humanity.
The Freedom Flotilla to West Papua sets out on the first leg of its epic journey from Lake Eyre to West Papua on July 25, 2013.
People from across Australia will meet Uncle Kevin Buzzacott, Arabunna Elder and peacemaker, at the shores of Lake Eyre in South Australia, on July 20, when he collects ceremonial water to take on this journey intended as a peaceful action to draw international attention to the crisis in West Papua where Indonesian military and multinational corporations are complicit in crimes against humanity.
Come to the Doncaster Christian Fellowship for a time of fellowship as they send off three of their members to be part of this journey. You are invited to come and hear something of their stories and the journey that they will be undertaking. This will also be an opportunity to connect with some of the West Papuan community in Melbourne, and share in a meal.
Sunday 14th July
10am to 11:30am – Doncaster Christian Fellowship Sunday Service
12:30 to 2:30pm – West Papuan solidarity meal
Please bring a plate of food to share.
Doncaster Christian Fellowship, cnr Doncaster and Blackburn Rds, Doncaster East
Preparations underway in the Federated Republic of West Papua to welcome Freedom Flotilla from Lake Eyre to West Papua Peace and Justice Convoy from Australia on September 2013. Check out the (ab)Original flag & morning star togetha on the banners ay!!
Message from West Papua to the Original Sovereigns in the continent lately known as Australia & Torres Strait Islands. “Lake Eyre to West Papua. Arrival dance practice for our brothers and sisters that was separated by Torres Strait ice melt”
26th June, Townsville
Pog crew changeover # 4 welcome on board Lex! Beautiful night in magnetic island. Heading north tomorrow if de winds be good – fingers crossed for a south easterly.
Farewell, Big Thanks & Love to Pat & little Moo with BIG courage…for now xx
26th June, Townsville
Getting Pog’s new jib pole to Pog
26th June, Townsville
Pog Mo Hon’s new jib pole – yeeeah!!
June 21st, Bowen
Last night with legendary skipper George onboard in Bowen – Big love & endless thanks. Set sail first light onto townsville for another crew change! Pog is going well, endless laughs on board – winds in our favour – wish us luck for the next leg of the freedom flotilla voyage!
Pog position report: approaching Bowen, QLD. Cupboards are all but bare, haven’t showered for a week, desperate for a counter meal at the local pub – please let the kitchen still be open when we arrive this eve!
Uncle Kevin Buzzacott & Ronny Kareni yarnin up with Robert Thorpe on Fire First show, 3CR Community Radio, about the historic Original Nations Passport Ceremony to be held in Melbourne on June 1st in conjunction with the Freedom Flotilla to West Papua.