Hear Benny Wenda from West Papua, 6pm, May 9, AUT Business Building

West Papuan leader Benny Wenda In New Zealand

Interest is high in the forthcoming visit of Benny Wenda, charismatic spokesperson for the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) who will visit Aotearoa New Zealand from 8 to 16 May. Benny’s first public engagement will be a meeting – open to all- at Orakei Marae, and will be followed by a public meeting on Tuesday at 6 pm at the AUT campus, Wellesley St.

This is a critical time for West Papua, as Indonesia’s persecution of the indigenous Papuans comes under the spotlight. This week dozens of young people were arrested as they took part in peaceful demonstrations and several were violently assaulted by the police. Indonesia’s abysmal treatment of journalists has been also been highlighted; even as World Peace Freedom Day was being celebrated in Jakarta an accredited Papuan journalist was being beaten with a rattan cane in Jayapura, West Papua.

Fortunately, West Papua has new friends, the seven Pacific nations led by Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands who have raised the issue at the United Nations. New Zealand should join them to make it eight. In his Wellington meetings Benny will discuss this opportunity with MPs, Government officials and NGOs. He then travels to Christchurch for a full schedule of meetings before heading to Tai Tokerau to meet with local iwi. Schedule below.

Read Benny’s story here: https://www.freewestpapua.org/info/benny-wendas-story/

Auckland meeting sponsored by Global Peace and Justice Auckland, West Papua Action Auckland, Oceania Interrupted and Asia Pacific Human Rights Committee

Contact maire.leadbeater

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