Report by David Robie. This article was first published on Café Pacific – Al Jazeera’s coverage of the Papuan protest at WPFD2017 in Jakarta. By David Robie in Jakarta INDONESIAN hospitality was given a rave notice last week for hosting World Press Freedom Day 2017, but it was also given a huge black mark for its “gagging” of free discussion over West Papua violations. Four days before the WPFD event got under way, prominent Papuan journalist Victor Mambor had warned in the New Internationalist that Indonesian double standards had imposed a silence over West Papua. Even a Papuan protest outside the Jakarta Conference Centre venue was kept at the margins, ensuring most of the 1300 journalists, media academics and communication policy makers from 90 countries were unaware of the shocking press and human rights violations that continue almost daily in the Melanesian provinces of Papua and West Papua (collectively known as West Papua). Al Jazeera broadcast the most comprehensive television report from its Jakarta bureau on media freedom and West Papua with both Titro.id website and The Jakarta Post also carrying reports. But for the rest, mostly silence. Brutal attack on Yance Wenda This was in spite of the brutal attack by police on Yance Wenda, a photographer for the Papuan news website Jubi, on the eve of the WPFD2017.
|West Papuan journalist Yance Wenda documents his abuse at the hands of police on the eve of World Press Freedom Day after covering a peaceful demonstration in Sentani. Image: Asia Pacific Report/FWPC|
|Pacific Media Centre’s Dr David Robie sapeaking at the “Free West Papua Media” seminar. Seated next to him is Indonesian human rights lawyer Veronica Koman. Photo: Titro.id|
|The poster for the West Papuan seminar, including the bird of paradise with pen logo.|
|Papuans protest over violations at the World Press Freedom Day event in Jakarta. Photo: Titro.id|