Pacific Scoop

President Widodo faces protests by students over West Papuan killings

wpapua - papuan protesters over paniai shootings 111214 425wide

A Papuan protest over the killings by Indonesian military at Paniai on Monday. Image: Merdeka

Pacific Scoop:
Report – By Pacific Media Watch

Scores of Papuan students have held a demonstration at the Gadjah Mada University (UGM) traffic circle in the Central Java city of Yogyakarta in Indonesia in protest over the killings of Papuan teenagers on Monday.

The action took place to coincide with a visit by President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo who was scheduled to give a public lecture before hundreds of UGM academics.

The students were protesting the armed repression by the Indonesian military against local residents who were alleged to have been members of the pro-independence Free Papua Movement (OPM) in Paniai regency, Papua.

At least five teenagers were reportedly killed.

The protesters unfurled two large banners with photographs of the victims that were killed in the clash.

The demonstration continued even though Widodo’s entourage left the campus at 3.45pm on Tuesday. The students also set fire to tyres resulting in black smoke billowing through the UGM traffic circle.

The action was closely guarded by hundreds of police officers. The police also closed off all access into the UGM campus through the northern entrance to the UGM traffic circle.

Scores of other police meanwhile surrounded the demonstrators who were blocking the road on the southern section of the traffic circle.

Translated from Bahasa Indonesian by James Balowski of Indoleft.

Source: Pacific Media Watch 9084

Earlier story