Jayapura – The West Papua National Committee (KNPB) says that a persuasive approach which the state will apply though the security forces in the land of Papua is a tired old tune which is being played again with the start of the new year.
"A humanitarian approach, a welfare approach, a peaceful operation approach, and so on, these are words which are most boring for the Papuan people to hear. It's an old tune. This tune is being played against to deceive the 305 civilians [who have been killed] and the 67,000 people displaced as a consequence of the Nemangkawi military operation since 2018", said KNPB spokesperson Ones Suhuniap in a press release on Friday January 14.
The KNPB, according to Suhuniap, will continue to take a stand which is pro the Papuan people. "The KNPB continues to reject Indonesian humanist propaganda", he asserted.
The plan to change the Nemangkawi Operation to a new name, the Cartenz Peace Operation, he said, will not change the militaristic pattern which has been applied in the land of Papua up until now.
"To continue the operation while covering up its criminal face, the name of the Polri's [Indonesian police] Nemangkawi Operation will be changed to the Cartenz Peace Operation. Meanwhile the TNI's [Indonesian military] military operations will be changed to territorial operations so that it appears legal because its organic. This is just a tactic to fool the public", explained Suhuniap.
This means, said Suhuniap, "All the TNI and Polri's crimes will be deemed legal, then covered up with humanist propaganda, peace, prosperity, to trick the public, which will be promoted by buzzers, the cyber army, by the TNI and Polri's public relations and information [divisions]".
Suhuniap questioned why if indeed Jakarta wants to prioritise a persuasive approach are armed troops still being sent to Papua.
"The evidence being that on January 7, 2022, a battalion of the Air Force's Special Forces (Paskhas) were sent to Papua and West Papua. On January 9, an infantry battalion (Yonif) of the 136 Special Raiders/Tuah Sakti from Batam was deployed in conflict areas to confront the TPNPB [West Papua National Liberation Army]. Meanwhile 450 Prabu Kian Santang infantry troops will be sent at the end of January", he said.
Suhuniap also insinuated that this is actually part of the state's strategy. Because this strategy was discussed during a coordinating meeting between Vice President Ma'ruf Amin, the Coordinating Minister for Security, Politics and Legal Affairs, Mahfud MD, the new TNI chief General Andika Perkasa and Indonesian police chief General Listyo Sigit Prabowo on December 15, 2021, in accordance with Presidential Instruction Number 9/2020 and the Special Autonomy Law (UU Otsus).
"So, it's very true the land of Papua is being taken over by this oligarchy", he asserted.
The involvement of the state, he said, can be seen by efforts by Mahfud MD to propagandise the importance of dialogue with Papuan people who have been cultivated by Jakarta.
"These meetings are aimed at fooling those urging full political dialogue with the actors in the Papua conflict. This is Jakarta's way of avoiding dialogue to resolve the roots of the Papua problem", he said.
Suhuniap claims that they all know Jakarta's tactics because they are just repeating old patterns. He even believes that Indonesia does not have the courage to enter into the realm of a political resolution because this is the state's weak point which would expose the state's rottenness and crimes which are maintained in the economic interests of a handful of the elite.
"It is this small group of the oligarchy which is and will sacrifice the humanity of the Papuan people, even the Indonesian people in the land of Papua. They oversee Otsus, the creation of new regions and place their agents in all aspects of the Papuan people's lives. They are a deadly virus in the body of humanity", he said inviting the ordinary people to continue standing together in the ranks of the struggle.
On the other hand, Suhuniap warned the Indonesian government to immediately stop committing crimes against humanity and to stop hiding economic motives and business interests behind military operations which continue to intensify in the land of Papua.
"The government must stop the humanist propaganda (political deception)", he said.
Speaking in the same vein, KNPB Chairperson Warpo Sampari Wetipo asserted that, "To this day the struggle of the Papuan nation has been one of demanding political independence. I don't think this is a secret anymore. Every Papuan person knows this and understands the political history [of Papua] and what is best for the future", he said.
Wetipo stated that Indonesia must understand that it has to stop the colonial policies and actions against the Papuan people.
"The best solution is to immediately give the people of the Papuan nation the democratic right of self-determination", he asserted.
Suhuniap also agrees that peace without independence is a toll road towards the abyss of hostility and destruction. Prosperity without independence is a sad but comforting song which cannot wipe dry the tears of the suffering of the Papuan nation.
"For 60 years Papua has been the poorest and most colonised part of Indonesia. It's people will soon be gone. The solution, immediately hold a referendum to establish the wishes of the Papuan people", he said.
The Papuan people, continued Suhuniap and Wetipo, will continue to demand their political rights until a decolonisation process for this colonised nation is realised in order to end almost half-a-century of oppression and colonialism.
"Indonesia is obliged under international law to guarantee and realise self-determination for the Papuan nation".
As has been reported previously by Suara Papua, the Indonesian police will change the name of their law enforcement operations against so-called armed criminal groups (KKB) in Papua in late January. Originally named Operation Nemangkawi, it will be renamed the Cartenz Peace Operation.
"Later the Nemangkawi Operation will end, and its name changed to the 2022 Cartenz Peace Operation", said Indonesian police public relations and information division chief Brigadier General Ahmad Ramadhan on Monday January 10, as quoted by CNN Indonesia.
Ramadhan explained that the name change will be made in concert with the end of the Nemangkawi Task Force's tour of duty on January 25. The Nemangkawi Operation was run by a join team involving a range of functions to act against armed criminal groups in Papua. They were often involved in armed contacts with separatist groups in Papua.
The police, he said, will prioritise persuasive and preemptive methods while the law enforcement function will be prioritised in confronting armed criminal groups.
"The approach which will be prioritised in the Cartenz Peace Operation will be persuasive and preemptive. By prioritising the function of intelligence, the function of social guidance and the function of public relations with the support of other functions", explained Ramadhan.
The other function which will be used in the Cartenz Peace Operation is the functions of prevention, the Tactical Police Unit and law enforcement.
In confronting armed criminal groups in Papua, the TNI will also apply a new approach by prioritising efforts at humanistic prevention.
General Perkasa claims that the TNI will prioritise a welfare approach, which he promoted when he was nominated as the new TNI commander. Perkasa explained this when he took part in a fit and proper test at the House of Representatives (DPR) last year.
[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "KNPB Tolak Propaganda Humanis ala Indonesia".]