West Papuan leader denied PNG visa again

1:53 pm on 4 September 2015

The West Papua independence activist, Benny Wenda, has been denied entry into Papua New Guinea.

Benny Wenda

Benny Wenda Photo: AFP

Mr Wenda was invited to Port Moresby by the city's governor, Powes Parkop, to attend a conference and other events, including next week's Pacific Islands Forum Summit.

But he says his visa application was denied with no explanation, and his lawyers say there was nothing wrong with the application.

The denial follows Mr Wenda's deportation from PNG last year when it emerged he did not have a required visa.

Mr Wenda says he received assurances he was clear to enter PNG again, but he suspects he may be on some immigration blacklist.

"The Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea has already stated in a media interview that 'if Benny applied for a visa, he's free to come in'. So I tried to apply for a visa to enter the country, but again [I was] rejected for the second time. So I don't know whether it's a country decision to not allow me to enter."

A call has been made to Papua New Guinea's Immigration Department, but they are yet to respond.

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