PORT MORESBY (Radio NZ International/The Fiji Times/Pacific Media Watch): Pacific leaders gather this week in Papua New Guinea for their annual summit and West Papuan leader and freedom campaigner Octovanius Mote says the support for his Indonesian-ruled region has never been stronger.
This is despite his being thrown out of the Pacific Island Development Forum in Fiji just last week and United Liberation Movement of West Papua (ULMWP) colleague Benny Wenda being refused a PNG entry visa for the second time.
Mote said thanks to social media, West Papua's cry for freedom is now being heard across the region and Pacific leaders are finding it harder and harder to ignore.
Octo Mote left New Zealand today for the Pacific Forum summit in Port Moresby where he says they will be pushing three main issues:
"One is our membership at the PIF. Secondly we are asking the UN Secretary-General to appoint a special envoy and conduct a human rights assessment besides the human rights assessment by the forum leaders themselves. And then the relisting of West Papua back to the Decolonisation Committee."
- The Secretary-General of the ULMWP, Octo Mote.
In Fiji, the Fiji Times reported at the weekend West Papua would will apply to be a member of the PIDF, even though Mote had been denied entry into the PIDF meeting held at the Grand Pacific Hotel in Suva last week.
Mote was part of the Solomon Islands delegation.
Prior to the opening of the summit, he was told that he would not be part of the meeting and to leave the Grand Pacific Hotel premises.
"I am free in this Melanesian land, I am home, I don't care if I am not part of the meeting," Mote told the Fiji Times.
"Everybody is behind us in the West Papua fight and no nation can stop us and even though I might not be inside the meeting. It doesn't matter to me, it's too late, our solidarity groups are there."
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