Systemic Racism towards Papuans in Indonesia must be removed!

The killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis must be a reminder that discrimination and intimidation also happen to native Papuans in Indonesia, and most of the cases are yet to be resolved. For years, hundreds of native Papuans have suffered racism and brutality by law enforcers. While being involved in peaceful rallies, many of them were arrested and charged with treason. Many of them are currently behind bars. All citizens, including Papuans, have the rights to peacefully express their opinions in public as guaranteed by international law. All forms of excessive force must be stopped, and all violations against protesters must be investigated. 

Here's a little background of what is happening:

"As of 2 June 2020, there are around 51 prisoners of conscience (PoCs) from Papua, including political activists and human rights defenders, who are still behind bars, mostly on charges of treason. They were arrested and imprisoned for peacefully exercising their rights or expressing their views.

In August 2019, protests were sparked in several regions by racist attacks against Papuan students in Surabaya, East Java. In the city, several people from nationalist and Islamic organisations attacked a dormitory of Papuan students, accusing them of throwing the national flag of Indonesia into the sewer before the celebration of Indonesia’s Independence Day, and used derogatory slurs including “monkey,” “dog,” “animal,” and “pig” against them.

Instead of dispersing the crowd that was attacking the students, police surrounded the dormitory and asked Papuan students to turn themselves in.

The standoff continued protesting the racism, yet police responded with excessive force by firing tear gas and arresting 43 Papuan students. The police took them in for questioning, but released them after finding no evidence that they had destroyed an Indonesian flag."


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