The chairman of the West Papua National Committee, or KNPB, says inclusion in the Melanesian Spearhead Group would open up solutions for his people's self-determination struggle.
Victor Yeimo and other representatives of the United Liberation Movement for West Papua have this week submitted their formal membership application to join the MSG.
The Movement was formed late last year at a major summit of West Papuan representative groups hosted by the Vanuatu government.
Mr Yeimo says Vanuatu and other MSG member countries have welcomed the West Papuan application.
He says membership would help their cause.
"For too many years, we tried to put our struggle on the national (Indonesian) mechanism. The international, regional organisation is more helpful to us because we know our Melanesian sisters and brothers will open room for us to talk about our self-determination."