28 Nov 2003

Indonesian police reported to have arrested more flag raisers in Papua

11:26 am on 28 November 2003

There are reports Indonesian police in Papua province have arrested 50 people trying to raise a separatist flag.

The flag was to acknowledge the sixth anniversary of the so called declaration of the state of West Melanesia.

The arrests come as some Papuans say they will mark December 1st, the day popularly known as Papua's Independence Day, by raising the Morning Star flag, despite an order for police to clamp down on such activities.

They have been instructed to shoot people deemed to be rioting.

Previous December 1st commemorations have led to dozens of arrests.

Meanwhile a group called the Pan African Coalition for the Liberation of West Papua is calling on black communities around the world to support the Papuan independence movement.

It is planning protests in Los Angeles today(fri) and on Monday.