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West Papuans: Boycott the Indonesian Elections and reclaim your sovereign state

West Papuans: Boycott the Indonesian Elections and reclaim your sovereign state
January 9, 2024, in Statement

ULMWP Congress

As President and Prime Minister of the ULMWP, we officially declare a boycott of the Indonesian elections on February 14th. We call on all West Papuans: do not bow down to the system or constitution of your Indonesian occupier. Following the 1st ULMWP Congress held in November 2023, you now have your own directly elected President and Prime Minister. You also have your own constitution, cabinet, Green State Vision, military wing, and government structure. We are reclaiming the sovereignty that was stolen from us in 1963.

West Papuans do not need Indonesia’s elections – my people have already voted. At the ULMWP Congress, over 5000 Papuans from all seven customary regions and representing all political formations gathered in Jayapura to decide their own future. With this historic event we demonstrated to the world that we are ready for independence. According to the 1933 Montevideo Convention, there are four necessary conditions for statehood: territory, government, a people, and international recognition. As a government-in-waiting employee, the ULMWP is fulfilling these requirements.

As we continue to mourn the death of Governor Lukas Enembe – just as we have been mourning the mass displacement and killing of Papuans over the last five years – we ask all West Papuans to honour his memory by refusing participation in the system that killed him. Governor Lukas was killed by Indonesia because he was a firm defender of West Papuan culture and national identity. He rejected the colonial ‘Special Autonomy’ law, which was imposed in 2001 in a failed attempt to suppress our national ambitions. But the time for bowing to the will of the colonial master is over. Did West Papuan votes for Jokowi stop Indonesia from stealing our resources and killing our people? Indonesia’s illegal rule over our mountains, forests, and sacred places must be rejected in the strongest possible terms.

We urge all those living in West Papua, including Indonesian transmigrants, to respect our mourning of the governor and his legacy. West Papuans are peaceful people – we have welcomed Indonesian migrants with open arms, and one day, you will live amongst your Melanesian cousins in a free West Papua. But there must be no provocations of the West Papuan landowners while we are grieving the governor.

To the Indonesian government, we are simply asking for your support for Palestinian sovereignty to be honoured within your own borders. The preamble to the Indonesian constitution calls for colonialism to be ‘erased from the earth’. But in West Papua, as in East Timor, you are a coloniser and a génocidaire. The only way to be truthful to your constitution is to allow West Papua to finally exercise its right to self-determination. A free West Papua will be a good and peaceful neighbour, and Indonesia will no longer be a human rights pariah.

West Papua is no longer an isolated issue: we sit alongside our occupier as a member of the MSG, and nearly half the world has now demanded that Indonesia allow a visit by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. Now is the time to consolidate our progress: support the Congress resolutions and the clear threefold agenda of the ULMWP, and refuse Indonesian rule by boycotting the upcoming elections.

Benny Wenda
ULMWP President
Edison Waromi
ULMWP Prime Minister

source: ULMWP

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