26 Aug 2008

Special Autonomy funds helping curb separatism, says Papua Governor

6:12 pm on 26 August 2008

The Governor of Indonesia's Papua province says special autonomy funds have helped his administration to curb separatism in his region.

The Jakarta Post quotes Barnabas Suebu as saying separatism is sparked by poverty.

Governor Suebu says that Papuan people are now accelerating development in their villages, using between 20 and 50 thousand US dollars in special autonomy funds for each village.

He says the disbursement of the funds is part of a strategy to quell separatist movements, because the root of the problem is a sense of unfairness felt by Papuan people.

The Governor's comments come after he reported to Indonesia's President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono on the latest developments in the province.

Mr Suebu says that if Papuans feel there is justice and welfare on their home ground, then the security issue can be resolved.