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Study: 'Indonesia military commits genocide in Papua' JAKARTA - Indonesia's military is allegedly committing genocide in its eastern province of Papua, which may threaten the survival of the region's tribal population, the University of Sydney's Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies said in a report.

A team from the center spent two years from 2003 to study the Indonesian military's activities in Papua. The military has also been supporting militants to counter the separatist movement in Papua, the center said in its report posted on its Web site. The Indonesian government denied the allegations.

"A culture of impunity exists in Indonesia, which sees its highest manifestation in Papua and Aceh,'' authors of the report John Wing and Peter King said. Indonesia's "armed forces act as a law unto themselves with no real accountability for crimes against the Papuan population.''

The center's report is ``completely baseless and doesn't have even a hint of truth,'' Marty Natalegawa, Indonesia's foreign ministry spokesman, said in an interview today. "The center would do well not to pontificate and focus on matters close to home.''

Indonesia has been fighting the rebel Free Papua Movement in its easternmost province, where resources include oil, gas, gold and copper. The province, formerly called Irian Jaya, shares an island with Papua New Guinea and became part of Indonesia in 1963.

Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, whose government on Aug. 15 signed a peace agreement with separatists from Aceh province, now wants to resolve the conflict in the Papua, he said in a speech on Aug. 16. Yudhoyono, who was elected president in September last year, pledged during his election campaign to resolve conflicts in the resource-rich provinces of Aceh and Papua.

Indonesia should "immediately commence demilitarization of the Papuan highlands, ending military campaigns and human right abuses, which have included killings, rape, torture, arson, destruction and theft of property,'' the report said.



Posted in General @ 19 August 2005 07:05 CET by Jeroen · 'Blog' RSS feed · permalink






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