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.

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Word from the Mountain Part 2

This is the second part of a 2 part series. This episode talks about Freeport Mines’ poisoning of the land and it’s people. It also includes an interview with Korenus Watori a lecturer on environmental issues at a university in Jayapura who worked for the government to do an environmental impact statement on Freeport’s Grasburg mine.

Continue reading

Word from the Mountain Part1

On my recent trip to West Papua I had the honor to meet Yosepha Alomang, a long time human rights activist Mama Yosepha who organises resistance to the world’s largest gold mining operation. Despite inhumane confinement and torture, she continues to promote traditional cultures, collective action and the well-being of indigenous peoples.
For over 20 years, Mama Yosepha has organized her community to resist Freeport’s destruction and the government’s complacency. Continue reading