FREEDOM FLOTILLA AT WEST PAPUA FREEDOM FORUM, DARWIN 2015

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

Flotilla Media Contact for West Papua:
Ronny Kareni, West Papuan Media Spokesperson 0401222177kev_fb

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Freedom Flotilla – Taking direct action on the high seas

ff2015  Freedom Flotilla – Taking direct action on the high seas against human rights abuses dispossession and poisoning of indigenous land and water in West Papua.

A river of poison flows from the last tropical glassier in the world. It is a sacred place for the Amungme People.The glassier is called Nemangkawi ‘’the white arrow’’. Many people have died by the hands of the Indonesian military who control the area since the mines inception.The Indonesian military are payed over 3 million dollars a year in “protection money” by Freeport McMoran which operates the nearby Grasberg goldmine.

‘’The republic of Indonesia kills people like me, Amungme people, the land the military own in Timika was not bought, it was taken at gunpoint. The Indonesian military is used as a tool by Freeport mine to kill us.’’ Mama Yosepha Alomang.

In 2013 the freedom flotilla reconnected the lands and the struggles of Papuan and Australia indigenous people with a sacred ceremony conducted in the water off the coast of Papua. Indigenous elder Uncle Kevin Buzzacott of Arabuna country in South Australia delivered the sacred water from the mound spring in his country and ashes from the Aboriginal tent embassy’s around Australia to West Papuan Elders leaders and Activist to reconnect the land and people that were once joined.

This year the Freedom Flotilla wants to follow up that reconnection with an action to highlight the suffering of West Papuan People and the damage caused by Multinational companies and colonial governments on the land and people, specifically targeting Rio Tinto’s Freeport mine in Tamika West Papua.

Grasberg Freeport McMoran mine In partnership with Rio Tinto the mine accumulates some 700,000 tonnes of toxic mine waste tailings per day ’(that’s nearly 26 billion tonnes a year) discharged out over the mountain polluting the head waters of the life line of the Amungme people.

West Papua is the scene of the most brutal colonial genocide in the region since Britain’s invasion of Australia. The ‘state torture and terrorism’ inflicted on West Papuans is the saddest and most horrific situation a human being can endure.

Green Left: West Papua, Freedom flotilla exposes Indonesian repression, Australian complicity

Duncan Roden

October 2nd, 2013

A group of West Papuan asylum seekers arrived in Australia on September 24, defying the Australian government and potentially raising already high tensions between Australia and Indonesia over asylum seekers.

The group of West Papuans includes six adults and a child. It has been reported the group had some connection to the West Papua Freedom flotilla, in which supporters of freedom for West Papua tried to sail to the Indonesian-occupied territory. The flotilla sparked by Indonesian authorities on its West Papuan organisers (sic).

The original plan was to welcome the flotilla in the Papuan port city Merauke. But the head of police and intelligence officers hand-delivered a letter to an organiser, prohibiting any ceremonies from taking place. The organiser’s house was then surrounded by police.

This repression forced the welcoming ceremony to take place in secret. Wile international attention was focused on the flotilla’s one remaining vessel, The Pog, as it continued towards Indonesian waters, a small group of activists travelled to the secret location at a remote beach.

Read the full article from Green Left Weekly

SBS: Was it legal to deport West Papuans to PNG?

Murray Silby, Greg Dyett and Stefan Armbruster

October 2nd, 2013

Questions are being raised over whether Australia acted lawfully when it sent seven West Papuan asylum seekers to Papua New Guinea after they were apprehended in the Torres Strait.

Greg Dyett and Stefan Armbruster reports.

People in fear for their lives or political activists intent on grandstanding?

Prime Minister Tony Abbott says the seven are in the latter category and it was appropriate for them to be transported to Port Moresby under a 2003 Memorandum of Understanding with Papua New Guinea.

The seven from the Indonesian province of West Papua, including a 10-year-old child, took part in a ceremony involving the handover of sacred water and ashes from Australian Indigenous elders.

Listen to the story from SBS Radio

ABC Radio: Concern Australian government is ignoring West Papuan asylum seekers plight

Updated 1 October 2013, 14:03 AEST

An Australian activist group says the Australian government is doing its best to wash their hands of the plight of a group of West Papuan asylum seekers, which have been transferred from the Torres Strait to Papua New Guinea for processing.

An Australian activist group says the Australian government is doing its best to wash their hands of the plight of a group of West Papuan asylum seekers, which have been transferred from the Torres Strait to Papua New Guinea for processing.

A spokesman for Freedom Flotilla, Ruben Blake says the asylum seekers took part in a welcoming ceremony involving the handover of sacred water and ashes from Australian Aboriginal elders in the Indonesian province of West Papua.

Listen to the full story from ABC Radio

 

SBS: Freedom Flotilla may upset Abbotts visit to Indonesia

Posted on September 29th, 2013

Brooke Boney

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has come under fire on a Indonesian newspaper after 31 people died trying to reach Australian shores.

Immigration Minister Scott Morrison confirmed today that four asylum seeker boats had arrived in the last week, including a small group of Papuan activists with links to the Indigenous Freedom Flotilla.

Mr Abbott left Sydney today on his first official visit as Prime Minister and he’s headed to Indonesia. But with the heads of 30 Pacific Nations set to meet in less than a week at the APEC summit, the Freedom Flotilla and West Papuan asylum seekers could be an unwanted topic of discussion for a prime minister looking to strengthen relationships with Indonesia.