Australia criticised over West Papua’s stolen independence vote

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Two former West Papuan politicians, Willem Zonggonau and Clemens Runawery, are currently in Australia to protest against a planned security pact between Indonesia and Australia. They claim that such a pact could be detrimental for members of the independence movement in the Indonesian province of West Papua, because it would formally recognize Indonesian control. The two men – who now live in exile in Papua New Guinea – also claim that Australia owes the independence movement of West Papua big time. Back in 1969 they were prevent by Australian authorities from flying to the United States to address the UN about major concerns they had with the handling of a referendum vote, known as the Act of Free Choice, on whether West Papua would become an independent state or part of Indonesia.

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