15 Apr 2014

PNG government failed on West Papua issue, says Namah

4:33 am on 15 April 2014

Papua New Guinea's opposition leader says the government has failed to address ongoing problems on the border with Indonesia.

Belden Namah says people in his electorate, Vanimo Green, are subject to continued incursions by Indonesian military forces hunting West Papuan rebels.

He says Vanimo people living near the border are harassed by the Indonesians who block access to the Papua New Guineans' traditional hunting and fishing territory which agreements between the two countries are supposed to guarantee.

Mr Namah says PNG's O'Neill government is misguided in its claims that trade agreements with Indonesia can address the problems along the West Papua border.

"It's a totally different issue, it's an issue about identity, it's an issue about the land, the motherland. So you can't mix those issues, you've got to address them separately. If it's an issue about trade, it's a totally different issue, it's the trade between Papua New Guinea and Indonesia, but if it's an issue about West Papua, it's about self-determination."

PNG's opposition leader Belden Namah