West Papua: What the UN Did and Must Undo

An open letter to UN Secretary-General, António Guterres

By 1965, the West Papuans were fighting back with the resistance movement known as the OPM (Organisasi Papua Merdeka, or Free Papua Movement), but instead of being reported as a last-ditch struggle for a people’s survival, it was portrayed as the quaint attempt of a few savages to shoot down napalm-dropping helicopters with bows and arrows. The UNTEA staff quelled anti-Indonesian protests, disregarded gross violations of human rights, and assiduously ignored West Papuan representatives.

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