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Push for West Papua

Tevita Vuibau
Monday, June 23, 2014

THE liberation of West Papua from Indonesian occupation will be a key feature of the SODELPA manifesto to be released next month.

That is the message from party leader Ro Teimumu Kepa who says they want the people of West Papua to know that theirs is not a forgotten struggle.

"SODELPA's message to the oppressed West Papuans is: You are not alone. Support is growing for your just cause. We are with you," Ro Teimumu said yesterday.

Her comments come after Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono was hosted by Pacific leaders at the 2nd summit of the Pacific Development Islands Forum in Nadi last week.

Before leaving Indonesia last week, Mr Yudhoyono told Indonesian Press he would address the West Papua issue and all "misinformation" on the subject, while in Fiji. "But he was not reported to have raised the issue of West Papua publicly at the forum, despite being quoted in Indonesia that he intended to do so," Ro Teimumu said.

As of yesterday - two days after the PIDF summit concluded, there has been no mention of discussions or resolutions from Mr Yudhoyono on West Papua.

"We view the appearance of the Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono at the expensive Pacific Islands Development Forum in Nadi as a diplomatic and political offensive partly related to West Papua," Ro Teimumu said.

"The aim is to keep as many Pacific leaders as possible onside with Indonesia's West Papua policy and to counter growing international and regional pressure in favour of the West Papuans."

She said Prime Minister Admiral (Ret) Voreqe Bainimarama had called Mr Yudhoyono visit "one of the greatest things that has ever happened to Fiji".

In his opening statements at the 2nd Summit of the PIDF PM Bainimarama said Mr Yudhoyono was uniquely qualified to help steer discussions as one of only three UN appointed leaders to the high-level panel advising it on the global development agenda beyond 2015.

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