Linked with our presentation of Statement … The West Papua Case.
And linked with our presentation of Petition Letter the United Nations Special Committee on Decolonization.
Indonesia maintains control over West Papua, using military might to deny the indigenous peoples their human rights and silence demands for self-determination. Since its invasion in 1963, an estimated 100,000 Papuans, about 15% of the population, have been killed by Indonesian armed forces and militias. Read more on Canada’s West Papua Action Network.
Mr. Warinussy’s untiring efforts for a peaceful resolution to the conflict in West Papua have made him a role-model for his community and for future generations. Confronted with summary executions, torture, sexual violence and massive appropriation of indigenous land by Indonesia’s armed forces and multinational companies, Mr. Warrinussy works tirelessly towards ending impunity for those who commit these crimes against humanity and the environment of his homeland. (Read more on this page of Pacific Peoples’ Partnership PPP).
Yan Christian Warinussy – Indonesia
2005 John Humphrey Freedom Award – Rights & Democracy is honored to present Papuan human rights activist Yan Christian Warinussy with the 2005 John Humphrey Freedom Award.
Mr Warinussy is a lawyer and Director of the of the Institute for Research, Analysing and Development of Legal Aid, known as LP3BH, who has demonstrated an exceptional commitment to the struggle for human rights in West Papua despite continuing intimidation and threats to his personal safety. Confronted with summary executions, cases of torture, sexual violence and massive appropriation of indigenous territories by the Indonesian armed forces, Mr Warinussy’s efforts are key in the fight against impunity in West Papua.
As the Executive Director of the Organisation for Legal Aid, Research, Investigation and Development (LP3BH) in West Papua, Indonesia, Chris has been a partner of Alternatives since 2001. Alternatives’ CIDA-funded Supporting Peace in Papua project supported Chris’s work with remote communities in Bintuni Bay, West Papua. There we partnered to uphold the human rights of villagers who were being displaced and affected by the establishment of a major Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) facility being built by BP (formerly British Petroleum). Read more on 10 years alternatives).
Alternatives is proud to announce that Yan Christian (Chris) Warinussy, a long time partner of ours, is this year’s John Humphrey Freedom Award laureate. Chris has played a major role in protecting human rights in West Papua and helping the Papuan peoples struggle against military and corporate oppression in their own land. We are honoured to welcome Chris to Canada from November 28 to December 10, 2005 to accept the most prestigious human rights award in Canada. His hard work, expertise and commitment make him a most deserving recipient. (See on Freedom Award 2005).
Colonized in 1714 by the Dutch, West Papua followed a path distinct from the other colonies ceded to Indonesia in the 1950s. Since West Papuans have no ethnic or cultural ties to Indonesia , the Dutch put in place conditions for their independence, enabling them to choose a flag, a name (West Papua) and a model of government. For example, culturally, over 200 languages are spoken in West Papua , while the Papuans are of Melanesian ethnicity, along with the populations of Fiji, the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu. In 1962, at the insistence of the Indonesian government and under pressure from the United States, the Dutch agreed to an accord under which the United Nations would administer West Papua until an “Act of Free Choice” referendum could be held allowing Papuans to choose between independence or integration with Indonesia. In 1963, the United Nations handed Papua over to Indonesia. In 1969, a referendum – commonly referred to now as the “Act of No Choice” – was held. Only 1025 Papuans, some with a gun held to their heads, were able to vote. The result was a unanimous vote in favour of integration with Indonesia. Popular discontent with this forced integration led to the birth of an armed independence movement – the Free West Papua Movement (Organisasi Papua Merdeka) – that is still active today. In 2001, an agreement was signed giving West Papua more autonomy, with Papuans gaining more control over their resources and freedom of expression of their cultural identity. In 2003-2004, the Indonesian government nullified the arrangements provided for under the autonomy agreement, further isolating West Papua and leading to new military operations to quash dissent. The greatest threat facing Papuans today continues to be the massive human rights violations that the Indonesian army has been perpetrating for the last 40 years. (See more down of this page of Rights & Democracy).
L’Indonésie au banc des acccusés;