2 Nov 2011

Freeport defends police funding in Papua

5:44 pm on 2 November 2011

The Freeport Indonesia mining company has denied public accusations of graft surrounding the 14 million US dollars it has paid to the police to assist its operations in Papua.

The Jakarta Post reports that the Freeport spokesperson has explained that the funds were legal under an international agreement initiated by several large companies and governments, known as the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights.

The spokesperson says the company has been very transparent on the matter and allowed the public to freely see the report on its website.

He says 80 percent of these funds were used to provide supporting facilities, including meals and transportation, while 20 percent was paid in cash.

Meanwhile, police have announced that nine municipal and district police chiefs across Papua have been rotated, describing the move as unrelated to the recent security situation in Papua.

Last month, police in Jayapura was criticised by human rights groups after officers opened fire on a peaceful gathering of the pro-indepen

ence Papuan People's Congress.

Six people died in the aftermath of the Congress which was broken up amid a police move to arrest almost 400 people.