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Studies supporting Papua expansion do not actually represent Papuans

Tabloid JUBI - June 14, 2022

Jayapura, Jubi – Anthropology lecturer of the University of Papua I Ngurah Suryawan said a number of major universities in Indonesia have profited from the Papua expansion, as the process required studies prepared by universities. The government would then use the academic paper to endorse the expansion of Papua.

"We know that universities prepare studies to provide academic legitimacy upon the establishment of new autonomous regions (DOB) in Papua but do it really represent the need and wish of Papuans?" Suryawan said in an online public discussion "Questioning the New Autonomous Region: Is it to Solve Problems in Papua?" held by the Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (KontraS) on Monday, June 13, 2022.

Suryawan said the Papuan people actually did not want expansion because they feared it would destroy the culture, autonomy, lives, and spirits of the Papuans, since it encouraged the exploitation of natural resources, migration, and more deployment of security forces in Papua. "Papuans fears the expansion plan," he said.

According to Suryawan, instead of using local political elites to encourage the expansion of Papua, the central government should have a clear understanding of the Papua issue and not encourage Papua expansion.

The government, Suryawan said, must evaluate the previous DOBs and see if they had had a positive or negative impact on the Indigenous Papuans. "We have to look at the reality of the Indigenous Papuans in the DOB area," he said.

Source: https://en.jubi.id/studies-supporting-papua-expansion-do-not-actually-represent-papuans