London, U.K. 24 May 2012) On May 23rd, the Indonesian government released its annual human rights record for Universal Periodic Review by the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland. Throughout the course of the proceedings, Indonesia failed to make mention of their ongoing human rights abuses to the people of West Papua. West Papuans have suffered under Indonesia’s military occupation for close to fifty years. West Papuans have been brutalized by occupying Indonesian soldiers and their political freedoms have been suppressed. The act of raising a national West Papuan flag results in a punishment of fifteen years in prison
The situation of human rights in Papua, was raised by the United States, New Zealand, France, and Japan at the review. France expressed concern regarding the treatment of human rights defenders and recommended to Indonesia to allow journalists entry into West Papua. New Zealand made recommendations to implement comprehensive human rights training for all military and police personnel in Papua and West Papua. “The Indonesian government is committing genocide and they are frightened to bring this up at the UN”, stated Benny Wenda. “It is time for the world to see what Indonesia has been hiding”.