7 Nov 2011

Human rights group says Papua dialogue can't happen while troops still there

7:03 pm on 7 November 2011

Indonesia's National Commission for Human Rights, Komnas HAM, says Jakarta must first withdraw its military and police personnel from Papua if it wants peace talks to start.

The Jakarta Post reports the Commission's deputy chairman, Joseph Stanley Adi Prasetyo, saying a troop withdrawal from Papua would be an important step in initiating peace talks.

He says such a move would show Papuans that the government was really serious about establishing dialogue with them.

The executive director of human rights group Imparsial, Poengky Indarti, also questioned the government's militant approach in Papua..

He says the OPM is not as dangerous as other separatist movements the security forces have dealt with in the past and may have more to do with them guarding the site of the huge Freeport mining operation.