Tue, Oct 08, 2019 - Page 6 News List

Migrants fleeing violence-hit city in Indonesia’s Papua

AFP, JAKARTA

More than 16,000 scared residents have fled an unrest-hit city in Indonesia’s Papua region, the military said yesterday, as one of the deadliest eruptions of violence in years sparked calls for an independent probe.

Since mid-August, Papua has been hit by waves of mass protests and violence fueled by racism against indigenous Papuans by Indonesians from other parts of the archipelago.

The Indonesian Air Force yesterday said about 11,400 people — mostly migrants — had been evacuated on military aircraft.

Several thousand more have left aboard commercial aircraft since late last month, it added.

Human Rights Watch yesterday called for a probe into 33 deaths during the Wamena riots to be led by Indonesia’s National Commission on Human Rights.

“The Indonesian government should also immediately allow the United Nations human rights office unfettered access to [Papua] to investigate the situation,” the rights group said in a statement.

There were signs yesterday that Wamena was returning to normal with many shops and schools reopened — although most students have stayed home.

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