West Papua military occupation: Destruction and displacement in Nduga

, by PRICE Susan

Independent human rights monitors are reporting that thousands of people have been displaced and healthcare facilities burned as a result of Indonesian military operations in Nduga, West Papua, according to the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) [1].

Indonesian military and Free West Papua activists in Nduga.

The investigation is the latest documentation of the horror of Indonesia’s military occupation of West Papua.

The Nduga Case investigation team from Front Line Defenders gathered extensive information on the humanitarian crisis in the region in March.

They estimate that more than 32,000 people have been internally displaced, schools have closed and a number of civilians have died in refugee camps. The team documented in detail the distribution of internally-displaced persons.

Conditions are reported to be poor, with women being forced to give birth without adequate healthcare facilities and children and elderly Papuans lacking food and water.

According to the investigation team, military operations have been accompanied by the assassination of civilians, including two school children who had been shot by Indonesian security forces in the Mbua district.

They also reported that Indonesian military forces have used helicopters to bomb a number of districts, damaging 34 schools. A local church has been converted into a military barracks.

Father John Djonga, a member of the investigative team, called for Indonesia to allow media and humanitarian organisations, including a United Nations human rights mission access to West Papua.

Susan Price