Police Halt Mass Demonstrations Throughout West Papua
Local and provincial police stopped demonstrators from continuing on their route to the House of Representatives of Papua building in Jayapura.
Motorcycle and other heavily armed police were involved in the operation along the highway. Units of soldiers from the Indonesian Army (TNI) monitored the demonstration from a distance.
However, the mass of protesters appeared in far greater numbers and were overwhelming forces of the police.
Police halted demonstrators in front of the post office… Not being allowed further into Jayapura city, many of the thousands rallied chose to sit in the middle of the road and continue their protest.
As a result, traffic was paralysed.
Speakers addressed the thousands of protesters demanding the independence of Papua and review of the Act of Free Choice. They also demanded an end to impunity in cases in Papua.
Hundreds of dock workers demonstrated in Merauke demanding wage increases.
The demonstration went ahead from 7am resulting in delays of the loading and unloading of goods and congestion at the port. The demonstration was peaceful.
Yohanes T. said, at the port yesterday:
“Around eleven years we have work loading and unloading ship, for only 70,000rupiah ($US8). It is very hard and exhausting work. The relevant authorities should attend to this.”
Manokwari pro-referendum rallies
From Alfred Auparai (Executive Secretary) & Markus Yenu (Exec Governor), West Papua National Authority, Area II Domberai:
The masses came together from different directions and assembled at the rally point following the call for peaceful protest. The crowd that consisted of students and common people started to move towards the Banyan Tree at UNIPA Manokwari together with the protest Coordinator (Alex Nekemen) and speakers, amongst them Silas Ayemi (secretary area Bintuni WPNA), Abraham Waynarisy (SH Chairman Solidaritas Pemuda Melanesia Papua Barat SPMPB) and KNPB.
Political orations were held accompanied by slogans of Papua Merdeka along the way.
The crowd started at 10:30 with the long march around the city of Manokwari towards an open field, on the route the executive governor of the West Papua National Authority area 2 Domberei, Tuan Markus Yenu, gave political speeches. In front of the office of the State Attourney of the Republic of Indonesia Markus Yenu openly inquired about the detainees of the december 14th incident Melkianus Bleskadit, Rev. Dance Yenu together with 5 students from UNIPA Manokwari who are kept in detention already 4 months and their case is moved from table to table within the Indonesian police.