Why the U.N. Disregarded West Papua’s Latest Push for Independence From Indonesia

Why the U.N. Disregarded West Papua’s Latest Push for Independence From Indonesia
West Papua pro-independence supporters shout slogans during a rally, Jakarta, Indonesia, Aug. 15, 2017 (AP photo by Tatan Syuflana).

In late September, an exiled political dissident and pro-independence leader from the Indonesian territory commonly known as West Papua submitted a petition to the United Nations calling, in part, for a vote on West Papua’s independence from Indonesia. The petition was reportedly signed by a large majority of native Papuan people before it was smuggled out of the territory. But the U.N. refused to accept it, in the latest setback for an independence movement that goes back decades. In an email interview, Greg Earl, a columnist for the Lowy Institute’s The Interpreter and a member of Australia’s ASEAN Council, discusses […]

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