6 Sep 2011

Indonesia to change Papua policy, says official

3:18 pm on 6 September 2011

A Papuan, who's part of the Indonesian government delegation in Auckland to observe this week's Pacific Islands Forum summit, says Jakarta is about to change its approach to help the indigenous people of Papua.

Nick Messet, who was formerly in exile in Sweden, returned to Papua several years ago and has been a strong supporter of the government's special autonomy laws in the region.

He says President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono is now planning to set up a body he hopes will ensure the special autonomy provisions work, bringing economic development and political stability to Papua.

"It's not been officially installed yet. It's like BRA in Aceh before, supposed to be handling Papuan case so that special autonomy can be empowered."

Nick Messet of the Indonesian government

There's also a group of West Papua independence activists in Auckland planning a number of events calling for Pacific leaders to support their call for self determination.