‘Papua is not the Red-and-White, Papua is the Morning Star’

Merdeka.com – August 15, 2013
AMP protesters fly the Morning Star Flag in Surakarta - August 15, 2013 (Merdeka)
AMP protesters fly the Morning Star Flag in Surakarta - August 15, 2013 (Merdeka)

Arie Sunaryo – The Surakarta district police have seized two large banners depicting symbols of the Morning Star flag belonging to Papuan students that was to be used in a protest action at the Gladag traffic circle in the Central Java city of Solo on Thursday August 15.

Meanwhile yet another demonstration was held by scores of Papuan students on Thursday at the Gladag traffic circle demanding that the government give freedom and the right to self-determination to the people of the province.

According to Merdeka’s observations, like the other two earlier demonstrations, the protesters sung the song, “Papua is not the Red-and-White, Papua is the Morning Star”. This time however they did not adjourn their bodies with logos of or bring pictures of the Morning Star flag.

In a speech, action coordinator Frans Hisage questioned the follow up to the New York Agreement between the Netherlands and Indonesia. This agreement was related to the dispute over the territory of West Papua on August 15, 1962. Among other things, it stipulated an act of self-determination for the Papuan people.

“Indonesia, which was given responsibility to prepare for the administration of the [act] of self-determination and development in Papua did not undertake this in accordance with the New York Agreement. Particularly after the administrative transfer was carried out on May 1, 1963”, asserted Hisage.

Satisfied with holding speeches, the students from the Papua Student Alliance (AMP) ended the action by reading out a statement containing three demands.

The demands were, namely, that they be given the freedom and right to self-determination as a democratic solution for the Papuan people, close down and halt all exploitative activities by multi-national companies throughout the land of Papua and, withdraw all organic and non-organic military (TNI) and police (Polri) from the land of Papua.

Scores of police were deployed to secure the action. In addition to police, a number of TNI members could be seen watching over the action from a distance. (bal)

[Spanduk bintang kejora milik mahasiswa Papua di Solo diamankan – Merdeka.com. Kamis, 15 Agustus 2013. Translated by James Balowski.]