Norway Criticizes Indonesia For Denying Media Access To Papua

During a Human Rights dialogue last held in Jakarta on the 27th of April, Norway’s Foreign Ministry’s State Secretary aired his concern about Indonesia keeping the media from visiting Papua province.
Indonesia should not bar the international community and media from visiting Papua to counter one-sided reporting on alleged human rights abuses in the resource-rich province,” the Norwegian Foreign Ministry’s State Secretary Kjetil Skogrand said during the fifth bilateral dialogue on Human Rights between Norway and Indonesia.
Indonesia has been accused of committing human rights violations in Papua by several international human rights groups and individuals. Jakarta has repeatedly denied such accusations, saying that some international groups and elements of society in several countries want to see Papua separated from Indonesia like the new state Timor Leste.
In an effort to curb foreign interference in Papuan affairs, the government has limited the entry of foreigners to the province, the scene of a sporadic and low-level separatist revolt.
“There might be reasons for concern about the situation in Papua. However, as long as the international press is not allowed to visit the area, it is difficult to assess the situation,” the Norwegian state secretary told The Jakarta Post during the Norway-Indonesia dialog.
Skogrand said that he would like to see the possibility of the international community and international press visiting Papua to assess the situation.
But the Norwegian official was not all criticism. The Papua issue aside, Skogrand praised Indonesia for having made much progress in upholding human rights principles.

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