ULMWP calls for peaceful and dignified observance of Papua’s 62nd Independence Anniversary

Jayapura, Jubi – The United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) has called for a peaceful commemoration of Papua’s 62nd independence anniversary on December 1, 2023. In a statement delivered by ULMWP Executive President Manase Tabuni, the movement emphasized the need for dignified observance, respecting and honoring every aspect of the struggle throughout the past 62 years.

Tabuni urged the Papuan nation, organizational leaders, diplomats, and Free Papua solidarity groups within Indonesia and internationally, to peacefully and calmly celebrate Papua’s independence, acknowledging and valuing various forms of commemorative efforts.

Highlighting the diversity in circumstances across regions and countries, Tabuni suggested a range of activities, such as ceremonies, peaceful demonstrations, religious observances, seminars, discussions, and artistic performances, to mark the 62nd anniversary.

Additionally, Tabuni stressed the importance of a moment of silence to honor the contributions of ancestors and fallen Papuan fighters.

ULMWP also appealed for prayers for Papuan civilian refugees both within Papua and overseas, alongside global peace considerations, particularly in the contexts of conflicts involving Russia and Ukraine, as well as Palestine who is currently facing Israel’s genocide.

“We called upon world leaders, including President Joko Widodo and Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi, to not only champion peace initiatives on the international stage but also to support the right to self-determination for the Papuan Nation,” he said. This support, Tabuni said, would be encouraging peace between the Indonesian Military (TNI) and Police and the TPNPB, as well as endorsing the Papuan people’s right to self-determination. (*)