20 Mar 2008

Indonesia seeks NZ assistance in Papua police training

4:23 pm on 20 March 2008

Indonesian police have sought assistance from New Zealand police to implement improved community policing in the Papua region.

They are also looking to recruit about 1,500 more Papuans into their ranks as part of the initiative.

New Zealand Police's manager for International Strategy and Policy, Jackie Goodwin, recently visited Papua on Jakarta's invitation to scope out areas where the Papua-based police could use technical assistance.

She says people in Papua made it clear to her that they want more development, and therefore more community policing and direct Papuan involvement in it.

"And also the Indonesian government recognise that there is a lot of diversity in lower levels of development in Papua and West Papua which represent additional challenges. And I think there's wide acceptance now that in order to achieve sustainable development you need rule of law. So police have a very important role in helping to achieve sustainable development."

Jackie Goodwin says the details of the assistance programme are still being worked through.