Wednesday 14 July 2010

David Cameron & West Papua

It's not often that West Papua gets on the news. Rich in resources and a highly biodiverse environment, but controlled with brutal violence by Indonesia (largely because of those resources), the West Papuan people undergo daily human rights abuses, and have no say in the governance of their country. Most countries and the UN quietly ignore what's going on in West Papua, and have done for over 40 years. So it comes as a surprise to find that David Cameron is a hero to West Papuan people.

This ITV news piece explains why Cameron is considered a hero in West Papua. They believe him being PM of the UK will help them gain their freedom from Indonesia. On the one hand, getting West Papua into the news is good, because it raises the profile of their occupation and abuse. But Cameron a hero? The man is very good at speaking without saying anything, let alone commit to anything, unless it's free trade or no taxes for the rich. (I guess he is a hero to the rich.) I hope he doesn't disappoint the West Papuan people and their faith in him. So let's step up the pressure on Cameron and the UK government.

The Free West Papua Campaign is asking people to write to their MP and ask her/him to write to the Foreign Secretary, William Hague, and remind him of the hope West Papuans have of Cameron's government. Ask what action the UK Government plans to take towards achieving self-determination for West Papua. I suggest you also write to David Cameron with the same question too.

Just before the May elections, Cameron described what what happening in West Papua as a terrible situation. Fine - let's see you do something about it then Cameron.