Pacific Media Watch

21 January 2017

WEST PAPUA: ‘Stop killing Melanesians’ Vanuatu civil society plea to Canberra

Archival footage from ABC News on Australian SAS training of Indonesian special forces in 2010 republished on the Special Forces News channel on YouTube late last year.

Len Garae
PORT VILA (Vanuatu Daily Post/Asia Pacific Report): The five most prominent ni-Vanuatu charitable organisations in the country — led by the Vanuatu Free West Papua Association (VFWPA) — have petitioned the Australian government to “stop killing Melanesian people in West Papua” by providing financial support and military training for Indonesian elite forces Kopassus and Detachment 88.

The training programme is made possible under the Australia/Indonesia bilateral military cooperation.

The petition was signed by the chairman of VFWPA, Pastor Allan Nafuki; president of the Malvatumauri National Council of Chiefs, Chief Seni Mao Tirsupe; chief executive officer of the Vanuatu National Council of Women, Leias Cullwick; chief executive officer of Vanuatu Non-Government Organisations, Charlie Harrison; and president of the Vanuatu National Youth Council, Vira Taivakalo.

The petition says the decision has come at the right time to support and encourage all the West Papua Solidarity Groups in Australia to change the heart of the Australian government to “stop the killing of Melanesian brothers and sisters in West Papua”.

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Original source - Vanuatu Daily Post

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