9 Oct 2012

Indonesian lawmakers inconsistent on Papua issue - academic

9:46 am on 9 October 2012

A specialist in Papua affairs says Indonesian lawmakers are displaying inconsistent approaches to the ongoing security problem in Papua region.

This comes as leading members of Indonesia's House of Representatives urged Jakarta to support any military offensive against Papuan separatists in order to keep the region part of Indonesia.

However, Richard Chauvel from the School of Social Sciences at Melbourne's Victoria University says this differs from calls by some of the same lawmakers after they visited Papua amid a recent spike in violence.

Dr Chauvel says the lawmakers had then called on government to be more conciliatory and start a dialogue with Papuans.

"They're consistent in the sense that they recognise there's a security problem in Papua from Jakarta's point of view but they are flip-flopping from a conciliatory to a repressive approach in what they want the government to do."

Richard Chauvel.