4 Sep 2006

NZ urged to help win release of Papuans held by Indonesia

3:05 pm on 4 September 2006

A church leader from the Indonesia province of Papua, the Reverend Socratez Yoman, is calling on New Zealand to urge Jakarta to release Papuans being held in custody.

Reverend Yoman, who is on a visit to New Zealand, says they include eight Papuans held for the killings of two Americans near the Freeport goldmine four years ago, but he claims it is clear that Indonesian are forces were responsible.

He says it is part of the Indonesian government's effort to destabilise the province and justify the presence of more troops there and so the military can gain more income from providing security for the mining company.

Reverend Yoman as also called on the international community to encourage Jakarta to seek a peaceful dialogue to resolve the Papuan problem, using international instruments.