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Catholic Bishops urge care for sea & people of West Papua

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Left to right: Bishop John Bosco Baremes, SM, Bishop of Port Vila, Vanuatu, Bishop Vincent Long OFM Conv (Parramatta), Bishop Robert McGuckin (Toowoomba), Bishop Charles Drennan, Bishop of Palmerston North, New Zealand, Archbishop Michel Calvet, SM, Archbishop of Noumea, New Caledonia and Archbishop John Ribat MSC, Archbishop of Port Moresby – ACBC Media Blog

Nabire, Jubi – Executive Committee of the Federation of Catholic Bishops Conferences of Oceania urge care for the sea and support the indigenous people of West Papua.

The statement is written by the committee consisted of Australia, Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands, New Zealand, CEPAC – the rest of the Pacific through its press statement released by scoop.co.nz, Monday (August 14).

The Executive Committee of the Federation of Catholic Bishops Conferences of Oceania is currently meeting in Auckland, New Zealand. They come from a multitude of island nation States spread throughout the Pacific Ocean.

They said, Bishops of the Pacific, the place of the sea in the lives of the peoples they serve were a central focus of their meeting. “Our common ocean is teeming with life and goodness. For many of our peoples the sea is their treasured source of nutrition, sustenance and livelihood. In solidarity with them, Psalm 107 resonates in our hearts: “those that do business in the great waters, they behold the world of the Lord and his wonders in the deep.”

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The bishops and archbishops aware of the impact of climate change on island nations and have been visiting communities and recording the destruction of shorelines affecting them.

They also said that they have particular interest in the “Blue Economy” to uphold a model of development that respects the fundamental importance of sustainability that looks way beyond any perceived short term economic windfall.

“Members of Parliament and local Governors and other civic authorities have a particular duty to promote long term economic and social development and to be vigilant in guarding against any attempts by international businesses to exploit our common resource,” it said.

They applaud government, community and private initiatives to develop water ecotourism and sustainable sea fishing. They also reaffirm that they are not “anti-development”. They look to the common good and thus advocate for an integrated approach to development where local customary practices are respected and communities are assisted to grow employment opportunities.

On West Papua

A further focus has been the livelihood and cultural integrity of the people of West Papua.

They said clearly that they do not promote a view in regard to independence (of West Papua). “Indeed we believe that where this question becomes a single focus, care to uphold and strengthen local institutions of democracy may be overlooked,” they said.

The federation echoes the call for quality education in Papua, for fair and transparent access to jobs, training programmes and employment, for respect of land titles, and for clear boundaries between the role of defense and police forces and the role of commerce.

They claimed that the large majority of indigenous people of Papua seek peace and the various dialogue groups, advocating and witnessing to peaceful co-existence, are a source of hope for all.

They will hold the Plenary Assembly in Port Moresby in April 2017 to which is invited all the bishops of Oceania. And the theme then will be – ‘Care of our Common Home of Oceania: A sea of possibilities’.

The statement signed by two Archbishops and four Bishops. They Archbishops are: Archbishop Sir John Cardinal Ribat MSC (President), Archbishop of Port Moresby, PNG and Archbishop Michel Calvet SM, Archbishop of Noumea, New Caledonia. And the four Bishops are: Bishop Robert McGuckin (Deputy President) Bishop of Toowoomba, Australia; Bishop Colin Campbell, Bishop of Dunedin, New Zealand; Bishop Charles Drennan, Bishop of Palmerston North, New Zealand; and Bishop Vincent Long OFM Conv, Bishop of Parramatta, Australia.(*)

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Six defendants of anti-racism protest in Jayapura sentenced to six months jail

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Goddess of Justice. – Jubi/Pixabay

Jayapura, Jubi – The Jayapura District Court found guilty six defendants involved in a mass riot following the anti-racism protests in Papua on 29 August 2019. The panel of judges gave them six months sentence, reduced by the defendants’ detention period. Therefore, the defendants would able to release soon after being sentence since the end of August 2019. However, their legal counsel team says to challenge the verdict because they believe that their clients are not guilty.

The six defendants Yan Peter Suramaja, Dolfin, Vinsen Dogopia, Jorgen Aipui, Valerio Yaas, Peter Meraudje, are found guilty in the trial chaired by Judge Alexander Jacob Tetelepta, with the panel members Roberto Naibaho and Korneles Waroi.

The public prosecutor charged them with different articles. Yan Peter Suramaja charged with Emergency Article, while Dolfin accused Article 160 of the criminal code on the incitement against the government. Meanwhile, Vinsen Dogopie charged with Article 170 of the criminal code about conducting violence against people and properties. The other three defendants Jorgen Aipui, Valerio Yaas, and Peter Merauje indicted with Article 365 of the criminal code about theft with violence.

In responding to the court’s verdict, lawyer Frederika Korain confirms that her clients would release soon if they accept the verdict because they have been in the detention since the end of August 2029. “Following the court’s verdict, their days in the detention will end soon. But we will consider this and discuss with their family to challenge not guilty,” Korain says on Thursday.

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In the meantime, lawyer Relika Tambunan who is also a member of defendants’ legal counsel declares the court finding does not meet the expectation of the Advocate Team for Indigenous Papuans, as the trial was not able to approve the public prosecutor’s indictment.

“There is no strong evidence to accuse them. Indeed, the trial cannot prove that our clients are guilty or commit crime as charged to them. We have time to reconsider before challenge for not guilty,” said Tambunan. (*)

 

Reporter: Hengky Yeimo

Editor: Aryo Wisanggeni G

 

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Two civilians reportedly killed in Sugapa

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Photo illustration. – pixabay.com

Jayapura, Jubi – Two civilians reportedly killed in a joint military operation at Yoparu Village of Sugapa Sub-district, Intan Jayapura Regency on Tuesday (18/2/2020). The report also informs two Papuan women have been injured during the gun conflict and currently are under medical treatment. However, no release so far made by the security forces related to the report.

Jubi resource confirms two victims in this military ambush are Kayus Sani and Meky who shot in their houses on Tuesday dawn. The joint police and military forces arrived at Yoparu Village on Tuesday at around 3 a.m. Papua time, he says.

“Kayus was shot dead in his house. They (the joint security forces) entered the house and shot him on the chest and fingers. They also did the same thing to Meky, entering his house and shooting him dead in his house,” he says.

A report further informs that residents took the bodies of Kayus and Meky to a local church on Tuesday, but no information about their funeral yet.

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Meanwhile, two indigenous women were also reportedly injured in the same operation. Elepina Sani, Meky’s mother, was shot in her hand, and currently got treatment in Yoparu Village, while a bullet hit Malopina in her leg. She is referred to Timika on Tuesday for further treatment.

Until the article published, no confirmation from both military or police about the incident so far received by Jubi. Jubi has attempted to contact Papua Police Chief Paulus Waterpauw on Whatsapp at 20.26 Papua time for clarification, but no reply so far. (*)

 

Reporter: Hengky Yeimo

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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Military spokesperson says victims of military operation in Sugapa are members of insurgent group

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Jayapura, Jubi – Colonel Eko Daryanto, the military public relations chief of Cenderawasih Military Command, says a victim killed on Tuesday (18/2/2020) in the armed conflict in Yaparo Village of Sugapa Sub-district, Intan Jaya Regency was an insurgent group member. He also claims that a boy killed in the same shooting location shot by the armed group.

Colonel Daryanto’s clarification is opposite to a witness’ statement cited by Jubi on Tuesday. Jubi resource told that both victims Kayus Sani and Meky Tipagau are civilians. He also informed two women had wounded during the attack.

As cited by Antara News Agency, Eko Daryanto states that the joint enforcement troop had involved in a gun conflict with an insurgent group in Sugapa on Tuesday at 7.20 Papua time when they saw two insurgent members carrying two guns. “They involved in a gun conflict while chasing those insurgents, but this armed group made to escape to the cliffs and bushes ahead to Ugimba,” says the colonel in Jayapura on Wednesday (19/2/2020).

Moreover, according to him, the troop later found Meky Tipogau’s body when checking the location after the conflict. He declares the victim Tipogau was shot by the military while carrying a weapon, but his friend was able to run away with his gun. Also, during the operation, the joint military troop seized a laptop, a cellular phone and two assembled guns, a facsimile machine, a bow and arrows.

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Eko further states that during the armed conflict on Tuesday, the insurgent group shot the joint military forces randomly. “Their fire hit 14 years old girls named Kina Sani who shot in her left sole,” says Eko.

Earlier, on Tuesday, Jubi published an article saying two civilians reportedly killed in Sugapa. According to Jubi source, the victims Kayus Sani and Meky Tipogau shot by the security forces in their houses. He stated that the shooting incident happened in the Tuesday early morning in Yoparu Village, Sugapa Subdistrict.

Jubi also reported that two women had injured during the armed conflict in the same location. Elepina Sani, Meky Tipogau’s mother, was shot in her hand, and now treated by locals in Yoparu Village. Meanwhile, Malopina Sani who shot in her leg referred to Timika for further medical treatment on Tuesday. (*)

 

Reporter: Aryo Wisanggeni G

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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