12 Jul 2012

US State Department urges proper investigation into Papua shootings

7:11 pm on 12 July 2012

The US State Department has condemned recent violence in Indonesia's Papua region and urged Jakarta to investigate allegations of excessive force by the security forces.

The State Department says it wants to see full and transparent investigations into a recent string of shootings in Papua, most of which have been blamed by police on "unidentified gunmen".

The Huffington Post reports that at least 19 people have been killed in Papua over the last month.

In the killing of the Papuan leader Mako Tabuni last month in Jayapura, police say an officer was forced to shoot him when he resisted arrest.

His death came shortly after he publicly called for police to properly investigate recent shootings.

The US State Department says that limitations on access to Papua for foreign governments, NGOs and journalists only feeds suspicion in the international community about government actions in the region.

It has encouraged Indonesia to take this into consideration when reviewing travel requests.