Monthly Archives: September 2013

UNODC and Norway: Working with Indonesia to protect Jayapura’s Cyclops Mountains

Indonesia is home to the world’s third largest tropical rain forest and 10 percent of global forest cover. This has enabled Indonesia to become a key timber supplier for the legal world market.

Norway's Ambassador,  Stig Traavik visited PapuaMr. Stig Traavik, Norway’s Ambassador to Indonesia, recently visited Papua as part of the final evaluation of the project X14, “Countering Illegal Logging and the linkage between Forest Crime and Corruption in Indonesia”.

Funded by the Royal Norwegian Embassy, the project focuses on law enforcement. It uses specialized training, performance standards and the development of a coordination network to build the capacity of law enforcement agencies and judicial officers. It also engages civil society to lend valuable local support to law enforcement efforts.

Accompanied by Mr. Troels Vester, UNODC Indonesia Country Manager, Mr. Traavik met Mr. Yeri F. Dien, Jayapura District Secretary, who explained why the Norwegian government’s attention to the management and protection of the Cyclops Mountains’ Nature Reserve, the X14 pilot project area, mattered.

“Norway’s support of this UNODC forest environmental protection project is very important for the people of Papua because Cyclops Nature Reserve is our main source of water and is also home to a wide variety of rare and unusual flora and fauna,” explained Mr. Dien.

The “Countering Illegal Logging” project successfully assisted the local government to finalize its Local Regulations of Jayapura District on Protection and Management of Cyclops.

The local government also formed a state budget-funded civilian task force to protect the Cyclops Conservation Area. In addition, the project successfully established a strong coordination network among the law enforcement agencies and judicial officers. It also engaged civil society to lend valuable local support to law enforcement efforts.

With the conclusion of the “Countering Illegal Logging” project, Mr. Vester explained UNODC’s next steps to preserve Indonesia’s forests and biodiversity: “UNODC in Indonesia is responding in several ways to assist Indonesia in preserving its forests. We are committed to a new regime to Reduce Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+), and preparing for a fair, equitable and transparent REDD+ architecture.”

Source: UNODC

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Indonesia holds air interception simulation in Papua

The National Air Defence Command (Kohanudnas) held an unidentified aircraft interception simulation with two F 16 combat jets of Indonesia Air Force (TNI AU) at Mozes Kilangin Airport, Timika, Papua.

“Kohanudnas held an interception simulation with code name – 37th of Tutuka – as a climax of national air defence training operation,” said Timika Airbase Commander Lieutenant Colonel Untung Suropati in an interview with Antara on Wednesday (25/9).

He added that the simulation demonstrated an unidentified aircraft without permit infiltrating Indonesian airspace, which was intercepted by two F 16s.

TNI AU deployed a Boeing 737-200 Maritime Surveillance as the unidentified aircraft.

“After TNI AU received a report from Kohanudnas, they launched an F 16 combat jet to intercept the unidentified aircraft. The F 16 conducted visual identification and urged the aircraft to identify itself,” said Suropati.

When interceptor jets come across suspicious cases, they will force unidentified aircrafts to land at the nearest airport.

In the exercise, Boeing 737-200 was forced to land at Mozes Kilangin Airport and TNI AU combed out the aircraft and held the plane until they received the permit license.

“The officers then interrogated the pilot and crew members of the unidentified aircraft. If they do not have a valid license, they should wait until the license is issued,” said Suropati.

The simulation was operated by officers at Mozes Kilangin Airport after 12 p.m. local time when the air traffic was low.

The Boeing 737-200 flew from its airbase at The Fifth Air Squadron Ujung Pandang, while the two F 16s flew from Manua Air Base of Biak, Papua.

The Kohanudnas is holding simulations from Tuesday (September 24) to Thursday (September 26) at Mozes Kilangin Airport to mitigate the impact of air strikes on national vital objects.

“We cannot conduct the simulation above the national vital object of PT Freeport Indonesia and simulate the air exercise above Mozes Kilangin Airport,” Suropati said.

Kohanudnas deployed at least 100 Army (TNI AD) soldiers and several officers from Mozes Kilangin Airport as well as PT Freeport Indonesia.

Source: ANTARA News

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OPM killed driver in Papua

A group of armed men of Free Papua Organization (OPM) shot a public transportation driver to dead in Puncak Jaya sub-district, Papua on Saturday.

Head of Public Division of Papua Police Adj. Sr. Comr. Sulistyo Pudjo Hartono told that the victim, identified as Ali Mangalik, 30, was shot in the head and died at the scene.

The shooting might have been done to disrupt security in Puncak Jaya, which has been stable in the past month, according Sulistyo.

“We continue to hunt down the shooters. When they’re arrested, they will be charged with criminal offences,” he said.

Saturday’s shooting is the second one this month, following the death of First Pte. Andri Candrayansyah, who was shot on September in Puncak Jaya.

Nine soldiers, six civilians and one medical worker have been killed in a series of shootings in Papua since February 2013.(*wpnn)

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Timor Leste Establishes Relations with NTT

Deputy Foreign Minister of Timor Leste, Coustancis Pinto visited East Nusa Tenggara (NTT) to establish trade cooperation between the two regions.

“We want to establish cooperation with NTT government,” Coustancis Pinto said yesterday. Most of the goods in Timor Leste come from Indonesia through Motaain border at Atambua, Belu Regency, NTT.

Timor Leste government has met with NTT Governor Frans Lebu Raya. The meeting was attended by Timor Leste officials, among them are Consulado RDTL for NTT Feliciano da Costa and National Director for Bilateral Relations, Markus da Costa.

Governor Frans Lebu Raya said NTT government welcomes the cooperation. Frans said Timor Leste citizens prefer to buy cement from Kupang since it is transported through land which makes the price cheaper. The needs for chickens can also be sent from NTT.

Source: Tempo.co

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A Remote Education Plan in Papua

The Lippo Group has established a partnership with JSAT, Japan’s largest telecommunication satellite company, to build telecommunication networks in Papua in hopes of giving residents in the province’s remote areas better access to Internet and educational television programs.

Lippo Group chief executive James T. Riady said that education was the core solution to the various issues faced by the people of Papua and that the telecommunication network built by the partnership would provide basic infrastructure needed to boost access to education in the region.

“Indonesia has been independent for more than 65 years, yet there remains plenty of places that have yet to be touched by our national development efforts. As we can see, regions in Papua, especially remote areas such as Mamit and others, need infrastructure and attention in education,” James said during a visit to the Sekolah Lentera Harapan (SLH) in Sentani, Papua, last Tuesday.

JSAT has 16 satellites in Asia and has been in partnership with the Lippo Group previously. Lippo Star is the product of this partnership.

“They are willing to help in Papua, especially in the installation of VSAT [very small aperture terminals] in schools in remote areas, so that they would become connected. They provide Internet as well as the best educational programs in the world for students here to watch,” James said.

Three schools in Papua have been selected to be part of the pilot project in the partnership, namely SLH in Kampung Harapan, Kecamatan Sentani, Sekolah Papua Harapan (SPH) in the Doyo Baru village of Jayapura, as well as the SLH in Mamit Village in the Tolikara district.

In the future, the program will be aimed at other schools in remote areas, mainly those located in mountainous regions.

“The VSAT will be installed in one or two months, not just in Sentani but also in Mamit. The models will be found in two school in Sentani and one in Mamit, if the concept goes well,” James said.

Shinji Takada, chief executive of JSAT, said that they had put initial efforts to improve the quality of education and the school’s facility prior to constructing the connectivity network.

“We have sent teachers with a new concept, where education is not only offered through knowledge but also the learning process. Our teachers here are graduates of UPH [Universitas Pelita Harapan], and they have come from different parts of Indonesia to teach, with the support of local government,” Takada said.

Paul Wetipo, principal of SPH said the installation of a telecommunication network would be useful to teachers.

“This [VSAT] will open up access to the outside world, especially because education is something that continuously evolves. Accessing the internet will offer teachers more knowledge and they will also be able to guide students more effectively,” he said.

Source: The Jakarta Globe

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Breakthrough imminent in Indonesia: O’Neill’s plan to defuse standoff over West Papua

By Rowan Callick === A breakthrough may be on the way for one of the most intractable conflicts in the Asia-Pacific region. Relations between Indonesia and the Melanesian nations, led by Papua New Guinea, have remained awkward ever since the Dutch withdrew from “Netherlands New Guinea,” and the Pacific islands became independent states.

The plight of “West Papua” as it is often called, has prevented Indonesia, the biggest and closest country in South-East Asia, from building the links that might otherwise have been expected, with the island countries to its east—even since it became a liberal democracy 15 years ago.

But, the PNG government, led by Prime Minister Peter O’Neill, has recently launched an initiative aimed at defusing the stand-off over West Papua, building the economy of the centre of New Guinea island, and gaining diplomatic spin-offs.

The western half of New Guinea island comprises two Indonesian provinces: Papua, whose capital is Jayapura, and West Papua, whose capital is Manokwari. It has a 750-km mostly mountainous and often in the past fraught and dangerous border with PNG.

In 2001, the area now covered by the two provinces was declared autonomous with 80 percent of its tax receipts to be retained for local use. But this process has remained only partially complete compared with the more successful governance situation in Aceh, at the other end of the Indonesian archipelago.

O’Neill, who led a delegation to Jakarta for talks with President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, said: “West Papua has been a sticky issue for PNG and the western Pacific for quite some time. Our role is to open up discussions.

Genuine desire
“We feel the government of Indonesia has a genuine desire to ensure issues relating to West Papua are managed in a mutually beneficial manner. For the first time in our bilateral discussions, we were able to discuss this openly with the Indonesian government,” said PM O’Neill.

He said he is convinced that Yudhoyono now wishes to withdraw military presence from West Papua, and allow for more autonomy through economic empowerment of the people.

“We feel this is a good opening for us to engage with the Indonesian government so we can participate in the improvement of the lives of Melanesian people there and of our own people along the border. Our officials are now engaged meaningfully in establishing the cooperation we agreed,” he said.

PNG’s Foreign Minister Rimbink Pato elaborated on the deal that was informally struck: “The Indonesian president will adopt a softer approach to West Papuan issues, allowing them greater autonomy.”

As an indicator of this, official representatives will participate in the Melanesian Festival of Arts and Culture to be hosted by PNG next year.

He said Indonesia would allow Papua New Guinea communities near the border to draw on its excess hydro power capacity with state-owned enterprise PNG Power buying electricity for its grid from Indonesia, and that the two countries would jointly explore for oil and gas in highly prospective targets that straddle the border.

Indonesia, Pato said, would fund an ambitious paved highway from Merauke on its side of the border in the south, to PNG’s Wewak on the northern coast.

The countries’ leaders signed a total of 11 MOUs during O’Neill’s visit, after which Pato and his Indonesian counterpart Marty Natalegawa began to chart an implementation course.

Extradition treaty
They agreed on an extradition treaty—which may ensure that Indonesian businessman fugitive Joko Chandra—wanted for corruption and who obtained PNG citizenship under a process that is being challenged legally—returns to face charges.

Another agreement under final negotiation, will permit planes to fly from Nadi, Fiji, through Honiara in Solomon Islands, then Port Moresby, and on to Bali.

One goal of the warming of relations, Pato said, was to prevent any resurgence of asylum-seekers from the Indonesian side of the border. About 8,000 refugees remain in PNG, living in camps in Western province run by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees following earlier conflicts, many of them seeking refuge more than 25 years ago.

The discussions between PNG and Indonesia have led to the latter inviting the foreign ministers of the four Melanesian states — Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and Fiji, as well as PNG, who form the “Melanesian Spearhead Group” (MSG) — to visit its Papua and West Papua provinces.

O’Neill flew for talks with Yudhoyono instead of attending an MSG leaders’ meeting held at the same time in New Caledonia.

While PNG is helping to usher its fellow Melanesians in towards better relations with Indonesia, Indonesia in return is backing Port Moresby’s membership of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN).

ASEAN has 10 members at present — and PNG feels it is entitled to join it because it has such a long land border with the group’s largest state.

Indonesia is also backing PNG’s bid to host the 2018 summit of the APEC forum — which would bring the American and Russian presidents, among other leaders, to Port Moresby — which will be decided at the next summit in Bali in October.

“It’s important for us to have such a relationship with Indonesia,” said Pato — who points out that in previous years, tensions not only unresolved but not even fully discussed about West Papua had prevented the full development of positive, mutually beneficial arrangements between the countries.

Now a joint committee of ministers from the countries has been formed to tackle the details and ensure the MOUs are implemented, he said — starting with the joint economic projects.

Source: Islands Business

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Papua: Working Together for Prosperity

By Hyginus Hardoyo === In Ogenetan, a tiny village located in Iniyandit, one of the more remote districts of Boven Digoel regency in Papua, residents recently donned their best traditional attire to welcome several guests from Jakarta.

Some, including several children, had painted their bodies black and white with makeup and danced to songs and chants as soon as the guests exited their cars. A group of women also started to dance at the other end, in front of the main building of the kampung, which is located deep in the rainforest near Indonesia’s border with Papua New Guinea.

As a group of young men started to play music using guitars and a plastic water drums, girls sashaying in grass skirts invited the guests to pass through.

“This is our way to give guests a warm welcome,” Yan Karowa, the local district head, said. “The dances and songs show our hospitality to anybody who is willing to come here.” Everybody was happy whenever guests visited the kampung, he said.

Processing: The cooperative sold about 1.5 tons of good-quality rubber sheets for about Rp 15,000 (US$1.33) a kilogram, described as a fair price given current conditions.

Processing: The cooperative sold about 1.5 tons of good-quality rubber sheets for about Rp 15,000 (US$1.33) a kilogram, described as a fair price given current conditions.

Ogenetan is inhabited by 57 families comprising 306 people, who rely principally on rubber farming, introduced to Papua in the early 1970s by Christian missionaries, as their main source of income.

Nearly every resident of the kampong was on hand at the hall, which houses the Nonggup Cooperative that they established.

People wanted to watch as the cooperative’s representatives stake a deal with PT Montelo, a private company. About one-and-a-half tons of good-quality rubber sheets were bought by the company for about
Rp 15,000 (US$1.33) a kilogram, described as a fair price given current conditions.

Living in isolation about 350 kilometers south of Jayapura, those who live in Ogenetan find that economic development comes very slowly.

Basic foodstuffs were previously exorbitantly expensive. Residents had to venture to places such as Tanah Merah, the capital of Boven Digoel, about five hours away. The journey had to be made by foot; the roads were almost impassable.

The hardships drove Yan Karowa and Riswanto from the NGO Wahana Visi Indonesia to establish the Nonggup Cooperative. “How can local people enjoy the fruits of their labor if they are burdened with huge debts and are unfavorably dependent on middlemen?” Riswanto said.

The local residents were at first reluctant to found a cooperative, due to previous failures, when money collected from the members was misused or taken away. However, through the work of the NGO, local residents became aware of how a well-organized and transparent cooperative could help the community.

The cooperative was established in 2009 with just 29 people who pitched in Rp 8 million for its operating capital. Through the cooperative, the local residents reached an agreement with PT Montelo to sell the rubber sheets.

Realizing that a cooperative could work and generate profits, members of the kampung joined the cooperative in increasing numbers. Currently, more than 130 people from Ogenetan have signed up and representative offices have been opened in the neighboring districts of Mindiptana and Arimop.

“The establishment of the cooperative enables us to easily communicate on the need to improve quality of rubber production from here,” Widia from PT Montelo said.

With total annual turnover of over Rp 300 million, a shop was opened under the supervision of the cooperative, providing affordable basic necessities and other agricultural produce to members. The shop is managed by Maria Wometa.

The mother of six says that business has been so good that she has been able to send one of her kids to study at a university in Merauke.

Bruno Etmop, the head of the cooperative, said that the cooperative booked a net profit of about Rp 23 million in its first year. By the third year, members were able to share a annual dividend of Rp 7 million.

Aloysius Bayub, a cooperative member, said he earned an average of Rp 1.5 million a month from the sheets made from sap from his 1.5-hectare rubber plantation. “It is enough to support my daily expenses, including paying the tuition fees for my youngest child at elementary school,” said Bayub, the father of three, whose wife has just died due to illnesses.

Bruno said that the cooperative’s rapid growth could not be separated from the discipline of its members in playing by the established rules. ”Each member of the cooperative who has debts has understood that the debt must be repaid in installments, together with interest.”

The money collected from the members was deposited in a BPR rural bank, whose officers came to Ogenetan once a month.

Backed by skilled assistants with a basic knowledge of management, Bruno said that he was confident that the cooperative could expand even further.

However small, this joint effort has contributed greatly to the local residents. A spirit for advancement has arisen from province of Papua in Indonesia.

Source: The Jakarta Post

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