Open letter from FWPC to Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG)
Open letter from FWPC to Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG)
The Secretariat of the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG),
REPUBLIC OF VANUATU
My name is Harry Jenkinson, I am writing on behalf of the Free West Papua Campaign, an international organisation which exists to alert the world to the ongoing genocide in West Papua, which is under brutal Indonesian military occupation, and to lay the road to full freedom and independence for the West Papuan people.
I am also writing on behalf of Benny Wenda, West Papua independence leader, Secretary General of Demmak (The Koteka Tribal Assembly), and founder of the Free West Papua Campaign.The Melanesian people of West Papua feel strongly and completely connected and a full part of the Melanesian family, ethnically, culturally, linguistically, environmentally and politically.
West Papuans are undisputedly Melanesian and their people the same as everyone from Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, New Caledonia (Kanaky) and Fiji.
They were some of the first Melanesian people in the Pacific and have been living in their homeland of West Papua for over 40,000 years.
Papuans are just as Melanesian as their brother and sister Papuans in Papua New Guinea so why should they yet to be recognised as part of the Melanesian Spearhead Group?
Melanesia does not stop at a straight border.
Ever since the Melanesian Spearhead Group was formed 2008, the West Papuan people have strived to join the regional group which they strongly identify with and know can truly help their country attain genuine Melanesian identity/solidarity and self-determination, neither of which have so far been recognised ever since the region was occupied by Indonesia in 1963.
The people of West Papua have been crying for over 50 years now for their Melanesian brothers and sisters to support them in their cry for freedom from colonialism, they have suffered illegal occupation of their country, resource exploitation, cultural destruction and genocide which has claimed the lives of over 500,000 innocent Melanesian West Papuan men, women and children.
During this tragedy, Papuans have suffered horrific human rights abuses, many of which are well documented with photo and video evidence and include countless reports of torture, rape, imprisonment with false evidence or without trial, and many more atrocities committed by Indonesian state military, police, security forces and intelligence at the express order of the Indonesian government.
It is also with deep regret that we must report that ever since its occupation by Indonesia in 1963, the Indonesian government has systematically tried to wipe out the Melanesian people of West Papua by flooding the region with thousands of Asian “transmigrants” in an effort to wipe out the ethnic and cultural identity of the Melanesian people of West Papua.
It is estimated by many that if the Melanesian people are not given full self-determination within 20 years then the 2 million Melanesian people of West Papua will cease to exist anymore.
The spokesman for the Aliansi Mahasiswa Papua (Papuan Students Alliance) in Yogyakarta recently said at a mass student protest support West Papua joining MSG: “if Melanesian (Spearhead Group) is not going to help us, in 20 years later, West Papua (people) will disappear. So we really, really need your help to help us and all the students from West Papua all over Indonesia support 100% to Melanesian countries and to the leaders and to the brothers and sisters about this event. The people of West Papua support 100% to receive us in the family in the Melanesian region.”
There were at least 8 such mass protests this week alone, some of them drawing thousands of Melanesian Papuans together to support the Melanesian Spearhead Group welcoming West Papua into the regional body.
Papuans carry banners calling for their Melanesian brothers and sisters in MSG, as well as the leaders of the group and of Melanesian Nations, to support their cry for freedom and to welcome their country as into the Melanesian family of Nations as Kanaky, which also is not yet an independent nation, already has been.
If the Kanak and Socialist Liberation Front (FLNKS) of Kanaky/New Caledonia has already been granted membership to the Melanesian Spearhead Group the why not West Papua?
West Papua, like Kanaky, is not yet an independent nation, and is currently like under the control of a colonial power like Kanaky is.
Why should this stop the people of West Papua from joining the Melanesian Spearhead Group?
It is at this point that we would like to show you an open letter which was written , 10th June, 2013by the West Papua National Committee (KNPB) Chairman, Victor Yeimo, who is currently in Abepura prison in West Papua, detained without trial for leading an entirely peaceful rally in support of West Papua joining the Melanesian Spearhead Group.
Here is the letter:
Victor Yeimo, Chairman of the KNPB and political prisoner
Dear Leaders of Melanesian Countries
I am Chairman of West Papua National Committee (KNPB) writing this Letter from Indonesian Prison bar of Abepura West Papua to express my deepest feeling on my people who are now oppressing by the Indonesian TNI and Police forces when my people continue to keep in struggle peacefully on rally to demand the right of self-determination and to support the Summit of Melanesian Spearhead Groups (MSG) in Noumea, Kanaky where our problem is planed to be discussed in the agenda.
I have been detained by Indonesian Police last month on May 13 on a peaceful rally where led in support the MSG and activists intimidated by Police. And again today May 10, KNPB mediate people of West Papua in whole regions are rallying and will continue to ask your support although peoples already been known that their body are going to be intimidate, shot dead, or arrest by Indonesian angry police and TNI. We could not let our people die and extinct from this Melanesian land under Indonesian colonial rule.
The peaceful rally is legal under Indonesian and International rule, but today, in open era, this is very difficult situation for us and people to freely expressing our felling, but this is the only one way for us to show our deepest hope to our Melanesian Brothers and Sisters especially you as Leaders to support us to be full member of MSG and to discuss our need to get independent as basic right of the self-determination under international law.
We are not slave nation nor animal on our own land. The people of West Papua are Melanesian, your people and your family. I am only local leader but for them you are their Melanesian leader. So, where they go and hope? where I have to lead and bring their tears of suffering if not you? And how much more the tears and bloods is going on? And how long do you keep in silent and forget us?
Melanesian Leaders, this is opportunity for you to take action in MSG. We have to defend and protect our land and the people strongly, more than economic and political benefit of colonial and capitalist.
Chairperson of KNPB
Behind Indonesian Prison Bar
The people of West Papua will never stop praying and campaigning for their Melanesian brothers and sisters in MSG to support them in their cry for full freedom and independence from Indonesia.
They will not be stopped by torture, imprisonment, death or genocide.
Their Melanesian Spirit is strong.
We are delighted that now the leaders of the Solomon Islands, Kanaky and Vanuatu have all pledged their support for their family in West Papua.
We are certain now that this time, the people of West Papua will not be forgotten by their loving Melanesian family in MSG.
Finally we would just like to conclude with the words of the governor of Port Moresby and proud supporter of full freedom and independence for West Papua.
“Until West Papua is free, Melanesia is not free”
Thank you very much for taking your time to read this letter.
We and the Melanesian people of West Papua pray and hope with all our hearts that the Melanesian Spearhead Group will welcome their Melanesian brothers and sisters in West Papua back into the family of the Melanesian nations and grant West Papua membership of MSG.
We know with all our hearts that the people of Melanesia will stand strong in solidarity with each other forever.
We are all Wantoks.
One Melanesian Family
Thank you very much.
Free West Papua Campaig
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