6 Jan 2003

Jakarta to reconsider transmigration to province of Papua

8:21 am on 6 January 2003

Indonesia is to revise its controversial transmigration policy, which has brought hundreds of thousands of Muslims to the province of Papua, a mainly Christian area.

The Jakarta Post reports that the Minister for Manpower and Transmigration, Jacob Nuwa Wea, believes regions like Papua should decide whether they need more people.

He said they were developing a system where the regions were first asked whether they needed migrants or not.

Mr Wea said under greater regional autonomy, Papua had refused to accept migrants.

Many of those at the public discussion on transmigration blamed the mass migration of mainly Javanese Muslims to predominantly Christian areas, for religious tensions