14 Mar 2013

Vanuatu bishop concerned about rights denied across region

3:17 pm on 14 March 2013

The Chairman of the Vanuatu Christian Council says people in all Pacific island countries are concerned about rights abuses and violence in Indonesia's Papua region.

At its just completed general assembly in Honiara, the Pacific Council of Churches passed a resolution for the World Council of Churches to pressure the United Nations to send a team to investigate the problems in Indonesia's Papua region.

Vanuatu's Anglican Bishop James Ligo says there is significant concern among the people of the Pacific even if their governments stay silent on the issue.

He says the Pacific region has other examples of the denial of basic rights to a territory.

"It was supposed to gain independence and then General De Gaulle removed the name of Tahiti from the decolonisation list and then it was never seen again on the decolonisation list of the United Nations. So it is important for other Pacific nations to stand on behalf of their brothers and sisters who are still suffering."

Bishop James Ligo