20 May 2016

Amnesty presses Indonesia for release of Papuan activist

4:06 pm on 20 May 2016

Amnesty International is pressing Indonesia to release a West Papuan political prisoner detained six weeks ago.

Steven Itlay has been charged with rebellion, or makar, after participating in a prayer event in Mimika, Papua province, in support of the United Liberation Movement for West Papua.

Mr Itlay is a member of the West Papua National Committee, which is a part of the Liberation Movement.

Indonesian officials have vowed to 'wipe out' what they describe as separatist elements in Papua.

However Amnesty International is concerned that the activist could face life imprisonment, and has called on Jakarta to urge local authorities in Papua to release Mr Itlay immediately and unconditionally.

Followers of Muslim faiths generally coexist peacefully with Christians in Papua

Jayapura, Papua. Photo: RNZI/Johnny Blades

Call for probe of Papua disappearance

Police in Indonesia's Papua have been urged to investigate the disappearance of Aristoteles Masoka, who was the driver of late leader, Theys Eluay.

Mr Eluay was killed by members of Indonesia's special forces in November 2001, and four men were jailed for it.

Aristoteles' father Yonas Masoka said his son went missing at the age of 21 while working as a driver to help fund his studies.

The Human Rights Commission says 12 human rights violations need to be investigated.