'One World- Our World - Free West Papua'

PRESS RELEASE. Madang 18/1/96.

Political Statement.

The brutal killings and massive destruction of Melanesian people, culture, customs and tradition by the Indonsian colonial government to make way for the settlement of new immigrants in West Papua/Irianjaya is not acceptable.

The OPM Revolutionary Council condemns the inhuman brutal killing of West Papua/Irian jayans and East Timorese by the Indonesian colonial government. The OPM Revolutionary Forces Commanders will not bow down to the Indonesian military at any time, despite the fact that they have sophisticated modern equipment. It will not deter us from fighting for our land rights and sovereignty.

The Indonesian government and her mighty military forces should realise now that modern colonialism with all its forms and methods are meaningless and useless since world politics have changed in favour of indigenous peoples. (UN Declaration of 1993 as the Year of Indigenous people and the United Nations proclamation of 1994-2004 as the decade of World's Indigenous people.)

It is a sad history that the Indonesian government and her mighty armed forces have failed to integrate Melanesians into Indonesian folk (Javanisation) in 34 years. Whatever new methods they try to deploy in anti guerilla warfare, they will never stop the fighting spirit of Melanesian nationalism, which is determined to win, rather than being blamed for stealing an Indonesian victory.

It will be impossible to restore the damages that have been done in West Papua/Irianjaya and East Timor. There will be no pardon and guerilla war will continue until the Indonesian government accepts defeat to save face and declares an end to Indonesian colonialism in Melanesia.

Moses Werror
Chairman OPMRC


The decision taken by the Indonesian Government's Colonial army to use force on kidnappers to release remaining hostages is a political move to secure support from the European countries who are currently holding a meetings in Brussels. The hostage issue dominated the first day of the meeting.

The OPM Revolutionary forces warns the Indonesian Colonial Government not to use armed force upon the kidnappers. It will jeopardize the whole process of negotiations and delay the release of hostages. The Indonesian Colonial Government will be held responsible for any loss of life in the rescue operation.

The Guerrilla war and kidnapping will continue if necessary until the Indonesian Colonial Government and her mighty armed forces officially admit their failure to integrate Melanesians into the Indonesian nation, (Javanization). The Indonesian Colonial Government must also initiate negotiations with the OPM Revolutionary forces for a peaceful transfer of Sovereignty to the Melanesians of West Papua/ Irianjaya and to put an end to Indonesian Colonisation in Melanesia.

Moses Werror
Chairman OPMRC

March 6th 1996

Jarkarta March 5 (UPI) Pope John II has intervened on behalf of a team of international scientists held hostage for nearly two months, urging Irian Jayan rebels to free the captives, reports said Tuesday. Moses Werror, chairman of the OPM Revolutionary Council, told Jarkarta's Kompas newspaper, the Pope sent a letter from Rome in late January urging the abductors to free the 12 hostages. Pope John Paul II sent a letter urging (Kelly) Kwalik and (Daniel Yudas) Kogoya to free the hostages", said Werror, who added it is now up to him to decide whether to hand the captives over.

Officials from Indonesia, Great Britain, the Netherlands and the International Committee of the Red Cross are planning to meet with Werror in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea to discuss the possibility of releasing the remaining 12 captives.

The Free Papua Movement abducted 26 people Jan 8 in Mapanduma, a village in the Baliem Valley, and has since released 14 of them. The biologists and their Indonesian guides were conducting scientific research in the Lorenzt nature reserve, some 3,500 kilometres northeast of Jarkarta.

Asked whether he was willing to urge both Kwalik and Kogoya to release the hostages, Werror replied that there was no such plan yet. "The Indonesian Government should first contact me as the chief of the Revolutionary Council", Werror said. "But for sure, I have urged my brothers Kwalik and Kogoya to keep watch over the health of the hostages."

Werror admitted that the hostage drama was part of the movement's bid to attract international attention to their cause.

The group wants an independent state for West Papua /Irian Jaya and has fought against the Indonesian Government since the former Dutch colny of Western New Guinea became part of Indonesia in 1964.

A team from the international Red Cross met with the 12 remaining hostages last week and reported that most of the hostages were in good condition even though they appeared to have lost weight.

12th March 1996- A Communique from OPM HQ.

'The release and welfare of the 12 hostages and 1.5 million West Papuans.'

Guiding principles

The following decision was made in the spirit of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Basic Principles of the Rights of all men, women and children, without any kind of discrimination; especially the Right to Life, Liberty and Security for all.

As the chairman of the OPM I would like to reaffirm that among our many recent priorities has been the safety and well being of the 12 hostages taken captive by OPM freedom fighters; alerting the international community to the OPMRC/WP Independence struggle; and maintaining the good image of the OPMRC/WP.

Therefore taking into consideration the condition of the hostages, we consider on humanitarian grounds, that the hostage drama has gone on long enough and hereby agree to the safe release of the 12 remaining hostages to their familty representatives.

We received many international calls of appeal for the release of the remaining 12 hostages who were taken captive by the OPMRC Commander of Region 2, Kelly Kwalik and Daniel Judas Kogoya on January the 8th 1996, in the Wamena region of West Papua (Irian Jaya) Among these were appeals from;

1. The Secretary General of the United Nations- Boutros Boutros Ghali;
2. His Holiness, Pope John Paul II;
3. The High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva; and>
4. The President for the European Union Parliament.

The achievement.

Since the kidnapping drama began the world wide community has become very well aware of the OPMRC/WP struggle. This has brought our cause and our demands for our rights and for our dignity to be recognised back into the international arena. This is a major victory usnder Stage 6 of the ongoing OPMRC campaign- internationalising the plight of the indigenous people of West Papua (Irian Jaya) which began with our very successful T-shirt campaign in 1993.

Enormous credit for this latest achievement must go to the OPMRC Commanders, Kelly Kwalik and Daniel Judas Kogoya and their members.


In consideration of the advice from friends and supporters in the International Community and from our own OPMRC staff team of advisers, I, as the Chairman of the OPM Revolutionary Council, agree in accordance with the principles of the Declaration of Human Rights, to the safe release of the 12 remaining hostages to their famiy representatives, through the good offices of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). Our commanders in the field have done their work. The matter now becomes one for diplomacy.

Today March 10th, 1996, I call for the release of the 12 hostages pending the return of the ICRC delegation to Wamena, West Papua, and the date of release should be determined by the day my personal letter is delivered by hand to the Commanders, Kelly Kwalik and Daniel Judas Kogoya.

The 12 hostages should be handed over to the ICRC Representatives who will then take responsibility for their return to their family representatives in Wamena or to a place suitable to the ICRC.

On the other hand, we the OPMRC/WP ask those who have called for the release of the hostages, whose names are stated above in paragraph B, to ensure that the already known plea of the West Papuan people for justice be considered with fairness and understanding. Moreover, we ask for a permament ICRC presence in West Papua (Irian Jaya) to safeguard the humanitarian needs of our people.

God the Father, please bless our historical decision to preserve justice and peace for mankind and let this humanitarian decision be an example for others to follow.

Moses Werror. Chairman OPMRC

Resolution on the situation in West Papua!

This resolution was adopted by the European Parliament,14th March 1996.

A. noting that 13 people, 6 of them from EU Member States, have been held hostage since 8th January 1996 by the revolutionary wing of the Free Papua Movement in the Lorentz Nature reservation in the highlands of West Papua,

B. noting that the hostages have repeatedly stated that they have been treated well but fear the worst in the event of an assault by the Indonesian armed forces,

C. supporting the initiative of its President to start communication with the Free Papua Movement in order to end the taking of hostages and to raise the difficul human rights situation, environmental destruction and the pressure on maintaining Papua cultures and heritage in West Papua in the European parliament,

D. stressing that it cannot condone the holding of innocent civilians against their will for whatever purpose,

E. welcoming the decision of the Chairman of the Free Papua Movement to call for a release of the hostages in response to the intiative of the President of Parliament,

F. considering the reported human rights violations against the population of West Papua during the last 34 years carried out by the Indonesian government,

G. concerned at the massive environmental destruction, such as the destruction of the tropical rainforest in West Papua and the pollution of rivers in particular by the Freeport McMoRan/Rio Tinto Zinc mining operation,

H. alarmed by the fact that the Indonesian army has moved heavily armed troops into the area which is also a threat to the local Papua villages with a population of about 5,000 people,

1. Calls for the immediate release of the hostages;

2. Urges the Indonesian army to remove its troops as a step towards the release of the hostages and not to take military action under any circumstances;

3. Calls for international monitoring of this process to ensure the safety of the hostages and the Papua villagers and supports in particular the continuing presence of Dutch and British official observers in the region;

4. Instructs its President to forward this resoution to the Council, the Commission, the Indonesian Government and the Free Papua Movement.


As of the 4th of April, contrary to former reports filed in this homepage the hostages in West Papua have yet to be released. Fearing for their lives, Kelly Kwalik, Judas Daniel Kogoya and other OPM captors have broken off radio contact with Red Cross Representatives and other concerned missions seeking the release of the remaining 11 hostages. Indonesian troop enforcements have escalated in the Wamena region and fears are growing of a possible violent assault. Moses Werror, Chairman of the OPMRC has repeatedly called for the release of the hostages, but due to internal factions within the OPM movement, and pressure by Indonesian troops, his demands for the hostages release have not yet been answered.


(Post Courier Port Moresby) Friday March 15th.

Indonesia will investigate Papua New Guinea's policy of allowing a leader of the Free Papua Movement (OPM) to maintain his base in PNG. Indonesia's Foreign Minister was quoted as saying in a parliamentary hearing in Jarkarta, "We will see what we can do". OPM leader Moses Werror, now a citizen and resident of PNG has been vocal in the recent hostage case. Indonesian parliamentarians have called on their Government to take action against PNG for providing sanctuary to Mr Werror, which they consider is a violation of the Indonesia-PNG Treaty of Friendship and Mutual respect."Papua New Guinea has interferred in Indonesia's internal affairs by allowing OPM rebels to operate within its territory. The Government should file a protest", said Zamharir of the ruling Golkar party.

Mr Werror served more than seven years in an Irian Jaya jail for his involvement with the OPM, which has been outlawed by the Indonesian Government.

Friends of West Papua implore that all concerned individuals write a polite letter to:
President Suharto
President RI
Istana Negra
Jalan Veteran

By spending a few minutes writing to this address you will be taking really effective action to help the hostage crisis and tribal peoples in West Papua.
1. Write in English or your own language.
2. Be brief.
3. It is very important to be polite no matter how strongly you feel about the issue.
Please make the following points:

a. Current Indonesian military operations in the Wamena region of West Papua must cease for the hostage situation has gone on long enough and that the world community wishes for a peaceful resolution to this situation. Please withdraw your troops and allow Kelly Kwalik, Judas Daniel Kogoya and members of the OPM to release the hostages safely. Do not take military action under any circumstances.

b. The Indonesian Government must recognise the inadequacy of the 1969 "Act of Free Choice" as a genuine expression of self-determination on the part of the people of West Papua and that the President of Indonesia is to recognise and start communication with the Free Papua Movement.

c. The Government of Indonesia us to recognise the Resolution on West Papua passed in the European Parliament on the 14th of March 1996.

Indon military appeals for calm in Jayapura, West Papua.

March/April. (SOURCE: Voice of America)
Intro: For the third time in 10 days, riots have shaken the remote Indonesian province of Irian Jaya. As we hear from Joe Leahy in Jakarta, this time the disturbances arose over the death of a jailed activist.

Text: Hundreds of mourners rioted in Irian Jaya's capital of Jayapura on Monday, burning cars and a market, and damaging buildings. Jayapura is about four thousand kilometers east of Indonesia's capital of Jakarta.

Monday's riots are reportedly over the death of a jailed member of Irian Jaya's separatist rebel group, the Free Papua Movement. Unconfirmed reports say three people were killed, several injured and dozens arrested, when the body of the activist, Thomas Wapai Wainggai, arrived from Jakarta for burial.

The protesters escorted the body from the airport , but reportedly turned violent when they passed a local university. Reports say the market was ablaze and people in Jayapura were forced to stay indoors.

Wainggai was jailed for 20-years in 1988 on subversion charges after he proclaimed an independent Melanesian state in Irian Jaya. The military says his death in a Jakarta prison last week was due to complications from heart disease and ulcers. The protesters doubt the claim, but the military says it has conducted an autopsy in the presence of international red cross representatives.

Monday's unrest follows three days of rioting early last week in the mining town of Timika, southwest of Jayapura.In those incidents, tribesmen attacked facilities belonging to "PT Freeport Indonesia," which operates a giant gold mine in the area. US-based Freeport announced last week it had reopened its mine. The riot was believed to have been sparked by rumors -- which were later proved false ?? that a local resident had been killed after he was hit by a Freeport vehicle.

Elsewhere in Irian Jaya, members of the Free Papua Movement are still holding 11 hostages, six of them foreigners, in a remote jungle to the south of Jayapura. They released an Indonesian captive on Sunday, the first development for several weeks in the crisis, which began on January eighth.

OPM Chief to speak to Euro Parliament.

Monday April 15th. (Post Courier PNG.)

JARKARTA: Moses Werror, Chairman of the OPMRC said yesterday he had accepted an invitation to speak to the European Parliament. "I received the invitation in February from Klaus Hansch, the president of the European Parliament and am waiting for the right time to go," said Werror. He said his departure, however, largely depended on the release of the hostages with the help of the International Committee of the Red Cross.

On saturday a Red Cross group, including a doctor, cancelled plans to visit the hostages at the rebels hideout in Geselama near Mapenduma, because of bad weather. Three of the Indonesian hostages were reportedly in poor health, one said to be in serious condition.

On Saturday, an Indonesian Parliamentary delegation left to visit the European Parliament. On Friday, Speaker Wahono criticised the Eurpean Parliament for the invitation."The invitation........was an interference in Indonesia's internal affairs," Wahono said.

US$15m offer from Freeport owners.

Monday April 15th (ibid)

JARKATA: The US owners of the giant Freeport gold and copper mine in eastern Indonesia have offered US$15 million a year to the local community in an attempt to ease simmering tensions, reports said yesterday.

James Moffett, chief executive of Freeport McMoran Copper and Gold Co, offered the sum at a meeting, Saturday in Timika, Irian Jaya, marked by a saturation security, according to local sources. The official Antara news agency quoted PT Freeport Indonesia president Adrianto Machribie as saying the company will give roughly one per cent of annual gross profit, around US$15 million. A local church source present at Saturday's meeting, said local people wanted the money "to go directly to them, not through the regional government or other private parties." Unless this demand is fulfilled the people don't think there will be any improvement from the current situation."

According to a Roman Catholic church source, thousands of military and police imposed a security clampdown for the talks. The source said the house of nearly every tribesperson was guarded by six armed soldiers.

The Indonesian military has since denied the heavy security deployment.


Jarkarta probes killing of 15 in Irian Jaya

April 17th (Post Courier PNG)

JARKARTA: Indonesia's military opened an investigation yesterday into the bizarre killing of 10 soldiers and five civilians, including a Brisbane-resident New Zealander, by an army officer who ran amok at an airport in Irian Jaya.

Bodies of the dead which included members of the country's elite special forces had been brought to the Irian Jaya capital Jayapura, a military official in the town said by telephone, without giving further details.

Business sources said the shooting started at dawn Monday, took place when an aircraft carrying the bodies of two soldiers were hacked to death by tribesman after a row at the weekend made a refueling stop.

Business sources said the attacking officer at Timika had escourted the bodies of two soldiers killed by the tribesmen before starting the shooting spree.
The officer was sick and acted alone. The shooting had nothing to do with the arrival of the two bodies at a Timika airport,"the military official said".

He said several of the 15 shot dead were members of the special forces unit while 10 of the 13 injured were soldiers and the rest civilians who worked at Timika airport.

Strong words from OPMRC Chief.

Official Communique from the OPMRC HQ. 29 April 1996

Chairman of the OPMRC Moses Werror issued an order today for the immediate and unconditional release of the 11 remaining hostages.
In a communique to OPM commanders Kelly Kwalik and Judas Daniel Kagoya, Moses Werror demanded their release and stated that if the demands are not met, the OPM commanders will be held responsible for their fate. Mr Werror said that "enough is enough," and the hostages must go free. There has been no word from Commander(s) Kelly and Kwalik.

Irian Refugees offered limited integration.

Wednesday, May 8, 1996(The National: PNG)

The National Exectutive Council has approved a policy to allow Irian Refugees to integrate into Papua New Guinea's society and/or encourage them to repatriate to Irian Jaya. The policy of limited integration means that only refugees who possess certain skills, experience, educational qualifications and other qualities will be given Permissive Residency Status and be allowed to leave East Anwin settlement in the Western Province, should they wish to do so.

Any refugees who wish to reptriate to Irian Jaya will be oficially assisted under existing arrangements and practices. Integration will basically mean that the Government takes over the responsibilities of health and education programs currently funded by the United Nations High Commission for Refugees, estimated to cost about K1.5 million each year.

UNHCR happy about new refugee policy.

Friday, May 10, 1996 (The Independent)

The Office of the UNHCR (United Nations High Commission for Refugees) is pleased at cabinet's endorsement this week of a new policy for Irian Jayan refugees living in PNG.

Resident Representative based in Port Moresby, Bernard Boyer, said he is happy that the long outstanding issue regarding the future of some 4,000 East Anwin Refugees has finally been tackled by the government. Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs and Trade Minister, Sir Julius Chan, announced on Monday that NEC has approved and adopted a policy to allow the refugees to integrate to Papua New Guinea society.

UNHCR has been financially responsible for the welfare of the refugees since they crossed from Indonesia's province of Irian Jaya into PNG in 1984. UNHCR has also been behind the proposed refugee policy now approved by cabinet. The refugees have since remained in a prima facie state. They remained unsure whether PNG would grant them permanent refugee status, hence to later become permissive residents or to continue to live on at East Anwin. They were not allowed to move freely outside the East Anwin Centre, nor were they allowed to travel overseas unless authorised by the foreign affairs minister.

Over 500 refugees have since absconded to Port Moresby and other centres and have found employment and are now earning a living. Now with cabinet's endorsement of the refugee policy, those previous regulations will no longer apply for refugees whose application for permissive residency has been approved by a government committee. "At long last,"some thankful Irian Refugees living in Port Moresby said.

Meanwhile UNHCR'S Mr Boyer has expressed satisfaction that the land feud between the traditional East Anwin landowners of the Western Province and the state is about to be settled. The Prime Minister Sir Julius Chan also announced that the department of Lands and Physical Planning is in the process of effecting the purchase of East Anwin land from the traditional landowners.

Hostages Freed.

OPMRC HQ 16 May 1996

In a fax communique Moses Werror reports that Indonesian Army troops have successfully rescued nine hostages (3 West Papuans, 4 Britons and 2 Dutch). The 2 Indonesian hostages were found dead alongside the bodies of 8 OPM freedom fighters. 2 others survived and were captured by the army.Two days earlier OPM troops shot down an Indonesian Army helicopter.

PNG to host decolonisation talks.

Post Courier May 22, 1996.

Papua New Guinea will be the host country for a decolonisation seminar in Port Moresby next month. The "C-24"- a special group of 24 committee members on decolonisation from the United Nations will visit PNG to attend the meeting.

The West Papua Action Committee (WPAC) has appealed to the PNG Government to include the West Papuan's struggle for self determination on the "decolonisation list" with the United Nations. The call was made by the WPAC interim executive director Michael Tataki while welcoming the Government's move to integrate the West Papuan refugees into PNG. Mr Tataki said the WPAC strongly urged the government to recognise West Papuan people's fight for self determination and independence.

The three-day meeting is to be held on June 12-14.

Nine Hostages freed in Irian Jaya Jungle.

Guardian Weekly May 26 1996

Nine hostages, including four Britons, were freed last week in an airborne rescue operation by Indonesian special forces after being held for four months in the remote jungle province of Irian Jaya.

But the joy of freedom turned to horror when they learnt that two Indonesian hostages had been murdered by their kidnappers. Anna McIvor, aged 20, was the only witness to the killings as she had become seperated from the other British hostages- Daniel Start, William Oates and Annette van der Kolk. She was found alone after the others had been freed.

Twenty five Indonesian special forces, or Kopassus, troops rescued the hostages after tracking them and their captors of the Free Papua Movement (OPM) for five days through some of the densest jungle on earth. All those rescued are unhurt and in reasonable health. The freed group comprised four Britons, two Dutch nationals and three Indonesians.

Response: Letters to the Editor, Guardian Weekly June 2 1996.

Hostage tragedy in Irian Jaya

THE RECENT murder of two Indonesian hostages by members of the Free Papua Movement (OPM) was a terrible tragedy, but also for the West Papuan people (Nine hostages freed in Irian Jayan jungle, May 26).

For more than 30 years they have been subjected to an occupation bu Indonesia which has stolen their land, attempted to destroy their culture and killed up to 200,000 people (including five members of OPM leader Kelly Kwalik's family in October 1994.) The Indonesians have a record of brutality and murder in West Papua, East Timor and elsewhere. There is a great danger now that the human rights abuses will escalate in the area over the next few months. Instead of using the situation to tell the world of their sufferings, the hostage killers have given the Indonesian Army the opportunity to pose as victorious liberators while they set about committing further atrocities unreported by the world's media.
John Saltford

THE Indonesians forcibly took over Irian Jaya, then Dutch New Guinea, when they forcibly expelled the Dutch in 1948. They have, since then, followed the Dutch example by imposing a military- colonial regime on this distant province, using it as a backblock from which to crudely extract cheap raw materials, not least timber.

Irian Jaya's native Papuans have no non-Papuan language with which to communicate with the world, while the Dutch, far from sympathetic, prefer to forget their own blood-and-money rule. The Papuans have no say in the enterprises established to exploit their homeland- they do not profit from the minerals or hardwoods sold to the West.

What were the British hostages doing in Irian Jaya in the first place, and what was their research designed to facilitate?

The Papuans, in the murder of the two Indonesians/Javans, did not act in any dark, whimsical brutality. Oppressed and isolated, they are perfectly sensitive to the political and economic horror being practied upon them, and what they did was a desperate but wholly political act.
Leo Schulz


(The following article was published in "The Guardian", newspaper of the Socialist Party of Australia in its issue of Wednesday, June 26th, 1996. Contact address: 65 Campbell Street, Surry Hills. Sydney. 2010 Australia. Fax: 612 281 5795. Email: Subscription rates on request)


"The whole people are very angry. You can ask them all. Ask them all! All are angry because they are very rough. They are rough to us, without mercy. These young people are for democracy. They are very poor people."

These are the words of an Indonesian interviewed on the streets of Jakarta by a BBC reporter last week-end when the Indonesian military violently overran the headquarters of the Indonesian Democratic Party (PDI) occupied by the supporters of the Party's chairperson, Megawati Sukarnoputri.

The BBC commentary graphically catches the truth of the popular outpourings of the Indonesia people against the Suharto military dictatorship that came to power in a bloody coup in 1965 in which an estimated half a million people were massacred. The Suharto dictatorship has continued its bloody rampage against the people of East Timor, West Papua, against striking workers and, now, against the emerging opposition represented by the Magawati led PDI.

Another eye-witness reports: "Tens of thousands of people are out on the streets, protesting against the assault on the PDI office" and that the houses of PDI leaders have been surrounded (by the police and army) to prevent them from leaving their homes and making contact with the masses of people on the streets.

Ever since the Suharto regime moved to unseat Megawati as leader of the PDI by organising a puppet break-away conference, Megawati and other PDI leaders have been holding public forums outside their office, similar to those held by Aung Sun Suu Kyi in Rangoon, Burma.

The difference is, however, that the Australian government and the mass media, in another exercise in hypocrisy, have not reported a word of these public meetings. Both the government and the media support the bloody Suharto dictatorship rather than the rising democracy movement in Indonesia. Megawati is the daughter of Indonesia's former President Sukarno,who became a national hero for his role in the struggle to liberate Indonesia from Dutch colonialism. President Sukarno was deposed by the dictator Suharto following the 1965 coup.

While the Indonesian government has reported "officially" that only two people were killed in the army assualt the Sydney Morning Herald reported 48 dead and hundreds wounded and arrested. The Indonesian government has attempted to impose a news blackout in Indonesia itself. Media Indonesia printed a front-page announcement calling on all Indonesian news organisations not to report the activities of the PDI.

Australian Foreign Minister, Alexander Downer, has failed to support the Indonesian democratic movement although loud in support of Aung Sun Suu Kyi in Burma. Only six months ago, former Prime Minister Keating made a pact with the neo-fascist Indonesian government. The agreement has been supported by the Coalition government. It is primarily a military pact and the Australian government has continued to supply arms to Indonesia and train the military forces reponsible for the oppression in East Timor, West Papua, and now against their own people.

Foreign Affairs Minister, Downer has recently attempted to close the case of the five Australian journalists killed by the Indonesian military when the invasion of East Timor took place in 1975. His weak stand follows the refusal of the Indonesian government to make any further inquiries into the circumstances of their deaths.

The Indonesian Human Rights Campaign has called for protests to be sent to the Indonesian government against their suppression of the public forums being held by the PDI and now, the storming of the office of the PDI. These actions are violations of Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Article 38 of Indonesia's Constitution which recognise the right to freedom of expression.

Send protests to: General Faisal Tanjung, Commander-in-chief Indonesian Armed Forces. Fax: 0011-62-21-364 926.

Major-General Hamami Nata, Chief of Police for Jakarta. Fax: 0011-62-21-570 9261.



Post Courier, Thursday July 18, 1996,PNG.

Jakarta: The Indonesian Government, criticised at home for neglecting the rugged but resource rich province of Irian Jaya, said yesterday it would deliver more development opportunities to the remote area.

"The government does not discriminate in the region. The government gives Irian Jaya province the biggest opportunity possible to develop its potential," Indonesian Administrative Reform Minister T.B Silalahi said.

"It is clear that the government is seriously paying attention to the development of Irian Jaya," Silalahi said after meeting President Suharto. Activists from Irian Jaya, which borders Papua New Guinea, have accused the government of neglecting their homeland. Violent protests erupted earlier this month when more than 500 youths seeking jobs as civil servants rampaged through Nabire town, capital of the Paniai regency, after learning that most of the vacancies in the regency had been occupied.

The military said 13 people were injured in the incident in which protestors had set fire to the councillors' headquarters and the regents house. Four people were killed in March in Abepura, near the Irian capital of Jayapura, after the body of the seperatist leader arrived there for burial. Also in March, Freeport Mc MoRan Copper and Gold Inc's Freeport Indonesia, which operates a gold and copper mine in the province, closed the mine for two and a half days after tribesmen rampaged through the town of Timika and Tembagapura.

The activists said in a statement they wanted more local people to hold various key positions in the government such as governor and regents. Irian Jaya is also home to the Free Papua Movement (OPM), which has been waging a sporadic battle against Indonesian rule. Six foreigners and three Indonesians were rescued in May after being held by the rebels since January 8.



Editorial Comment,Guardian Weekly, August 4 1996: Vol 155 No 5

Indonesia has become, almost overnight, a huge question-mark in the heart of Southeast Asia. Doubts over President Suharto's health have fused with the visible evidence on the streets of popular unrest. The flaws of this much-touted advertisement for the Asian formula of authoritarianism plus globalisation are suddenly revealed. Ordinary people do not like the enormous disparities of income, the pervasive corruption, and the clumsy political repression that goes with it. The assumption that Suharto could lead his country into the next century looks naive or syncophantic: now the question is whether he can survive to the end of his current term.

Critics of the regime have long argued that Western Governments have shown far too much indulgence for Suharto ever since he presided over the bloody anti-left purge of 1965-66 and engineered the removal of the late President Sukarno. Savage repression in East Timor -to which no one could shut their eyes- is too often regarded as an abberation, almost cancelled out by the "miracle" of rapid economic growth. Now it is time to submit conventional wisdom to much closer scrutiny. Is it just that an aging leader (shaken by the recent death of a much-loved and dominant wife) has lost its grip? Or was there always something fundamentally wrong with the formula?

Suharto clearly made a tactical error in instigating the removal of MegawatiSukarnoputri (daughter of the former president) from the leadership of the Indonesia Democratic Party (PDI). Long used to manipulating the tame "opposition", he failed to see that this would create an issue around which the emerging pro-democracy movement could take shape. Ironically, Megawati only entered politics three years ago at the behest of Surjadi, now her rival as PDI leader. She is now being discarded because she has done too well and might even run for presidency in 1998. The hollowness of Indonesia's democratic fascade could not be more evident. Yet the real significance is the way that this affair has become the catalyst for a much wider range of popular discontent. This year has seen a revival of student militancy and workers' demonstrations in which political issues are increasingly linked to economic complaints. Much of Indonesia's growth is based upon low wages and poor working conditions. Though living standards have improved for many in the past decade, the extent of corruption (most blatantly among Suharto's family and friends) provokes general anger. Significantly too, the leader of the powerful Muslim party of the Ulamas, Aburrachim Wahid, has let it be known that he supports Megawati.

Those who have applauded the Indonesian model uncritically should look hard at the dissolution of other authoritarian regimes such as South Korea and Taiwan. The transition in recent years from straight military rule to guided technocracy creates new contradictions. Democracy deserves support as much in Indonesia as anywhere else, and it is shortsighted to back the regime that surpresses it. British sales of water-cannon - now being used to disperse demonstrators in Jarkarta - and of dual purpose Hawk jets, which have seen action over East Timor, are indefensible. History has a habit, sooner or later, of settling accounts. Suharto has long had a reputation for listening to soothsayers. Could there be a deeper reason for his unwise purge of Megawati? She is, after all, her father's daughter, and there are many thousands of unpropitiated ghosts from the Sukarno era, which was so bloodily destroyed.



The following Press Release was issued on 23 August 1996, by John Ondawame, of the Political Bureau, International Affairs of the OPM in Sydney:
Originally from: Owner-west-irian-newslist@xc.org (Moderator)
Originally dated: Fri, 23 Aug

Since the start of the second major hostage drama in West Papua (Indonesian-occupied 'Irian Jaya') this year, claims have been made by the Indonesian military that 'bandits', 'wild gangsters' 'terrorists', 'security disturbing groups' and even 'thieves' and 'communists' were responsible, and spokespersons have used these terms to describe the OPM.

This type of misrepresentation is not new in liberation struggles against colonial regimes. During the nationalist movement of the Palestinian people in the Middle East, the western nations and Israel have used similar terms aimed to justify their crimes against the Palestinians and then terrorise civilians on a huge scale. When the people of Indonesia themselves took up arms and fought against Dutch colonial power, the nationalist movement was stamped as a cult movement, an Islamic fundamentalist movement, or a communist movement of a primitive society. Like Israel and the Netherlands, Jakarta repeats this terminology to justify its terrorising actions against innocent people in West Papua.

In the recent hostage drama, 16 people were taken by the OPM near Timika, under the leadership of Brigadier General Jogi Tadeus of the KODAM VI (Gobai Command) of the National Liberation Army (TEPENAL) of the OPM, which operates in the Paniai region. The Jogi group has been charged to take responsibility for both the military and political campaign in Paniai province, replacing Mr Julius Gow, the former commander, who died in 1985. The recent action indicates that the OPM's activities are widespread.

It needs to be recognised that the hostage taking dramas undertaken by the OPM in the last few months were not terrorist actions but part of a strategic campaign of a national liberation movement and a direct expression of the people over the lack of respect for, and recognition of, their fundamental human rights. It was a way to draw public attention to the forgotten issues in Wet Papua. Emphasising the crucial need for international solidarity, support and serious attention to the cause, the OPM has a commitment to use all available means to achieve its political goals.

The present situation is a result of the continued lack of respect for land rights of the Amungme and Komoro peoples in their traditional areas and the illegal destruction of the tropical forests and its environmental implications. The lack of consultation and compensation for the loss of land perpetrated by the Djajanti Group has become the key political and social problem which has led to the new hostage drama, an action which nobody is happy to see. The Djajanti Group is one of the biggest logging companies in Indonesia, owned by the Suharto family. Seventy-four logging companies are still operating in West Papua today. The Djajanti Group is the leading company in Indonesia and is ranked in the top position in West Papua. Not surprisingly, the local owners feel their interests have been denied and violated.

Environmentally sustainable development is our common problem. It is our moral obligation to prevent any further destruction in the pursuit of money and glory, at the expense of the local and working class people. It is our moral duty to save our world from total destruction. In this spirit and in the interests of the people of West Papua, I, representative of the OPM, call on the world community, particularly governments in the South Pacific region, including Australia, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea, to take immediate action and put pressure on the government in Jakarta to withdraw its illegal logging activities in West Papua. Equally important, we do not want repeated the same tragic story of Geselama earlier this year, in which two innocent Indonesians were killed.

I therefore call on the Indonesian armed forces to withdraw immediately from the area in order to end the hostage drama in a peaceful manner by using the procedure suggested by the OPM. The procedural conditions are that logging is to be terminated at once, negotiations must involve human rights groups and Amungme leader, Tom Beanal, is to mediate between the government and the OPM.

Finally, respect for and recognition of the land rights of the Amungme amd Komoro people is the only way to end the political and social conflict. Recognising the fact that these fundamental issues have been denied for thirty-three years of colonial rule, I call on Jakarta to start a new peaceful negotiation with the OPM. In this way, I believe, peace and stability can be established in the region.


Subject: ABRI now says kidnappers are OPM

From: west-irian-newslist@xc.org (Moderator)
Originally dated: Sun, 25 Aug

From: tapol (Tapol)
Kompas, 25 August 1996
Summary only

District military commander Colonel Frans de Wanna, said it can now be confirmed that the group that kidnapped twelve Indonesians who work for PT Kamundan Raya, a logging company that is a subsidiary of PT Djajanti, is part of the 'GPK', (the term meaning 'security disrupters' is used by the armed forces for the armed liberation movement, the OPM).

The troops have now found a number of documents which make the OPM's role clear. The documents were discovered in a noken (traditional string bag) which was found on the body of a member of the group who was killed during an encounter with the kidnappers, as part of the army's operations to free the hostages.

According to these documents, the instruction to carry out the kidnap was given to M. Yogi by Tadius Yogi. The documents include papers identifying M Yogi, the person who was killed in the clash. The documents make is clear that M. Yogi's alias is Tius Orop Yane Magae Yogi, who was 30 years old.

The military commander refused to divulge further information about the contents of the documents but he told journalists that it was not yet possible to say whether the group which operates in the central area of Irian Jaya is operating under the command of Kelly Kwalik.

This report and others in other newspapers say that the army's operations have been delayed by the onset of bad weather but conditions have now improved and troops are said to be continuing the search for the kidnap group and the hostages. The army claims that troops have been able to block the border between the districts of Paniai and Timika. The kidnap is though to be operating along this border area. The terrain here is far more difficult than that in Mapnduma which is where the previous kidnap, earlier this year took place.

The army claims that one firearm and a number of bullets were also seized during the operation. The twelve hostages include a woman named Wiwin.


OPM grab hostages, 2 escape.

Post Courier, Monday August 19 1996

Two of 14 Indonesians kidnapped a few days ago by OPM seperatists in remote Irian Jaya have escaped an official said Saturday.

One of the captives, a driver for a logging company, escaped today and the other captive fled on Wednesday, the day they were taken hostage, military spokesman Colonel Maulud Hidayat said by telephone. "This makes our job of locating the rebels much easier," said Hidayat. He said the remaining 12 Indonesians, all workers of logging company PT Kamundan, would soon be freed, "since we already know their location and it is not too far away." The militants initially abducted 17 Indonesians on Wednesday from the village of Komora in Timika district, about 3,500km north-east of Jarkarta. Timika is the site of the giant US-owned Freeport Copper Mines.

The rebels released three Indonesians with a letter demanding a halt to the felling of trees for logs by PT Kamundan. They demanded negotiations for the hostages be conducted through a well known enviromentalist in the region, Tom Beanal, and an unidentified human rights group. The leader of the Amungme tribe in Timika, Beanal has filed a $US6 billion law suit in the US against Freeport McMoRan Copper and Gold, accusing it of causing environmental damage.

Reacting to the demand, Major General Dunidja, military Commander of Irian Jaya, said the military would not negotiate with the rebels. "The armed forces will not negotiate with the rebels in whatever form," Dunidja was quoted as saying by the official Antara news agency.

Dunidja said the rebels led by M Yogi, had been surrounded by nearly 800 soldiers. A recently established anti terrorism squad has been sent to Timika to handle the abduction, according to a military source.


Indonesia marks 51st anniversary: Ambassador says Govt will not consider independence or antonomy for Irian Jaya.

Post Courier, Monday August 19, 1996
INDONESIA'S Ambassador Abinowo says there is no way the Indonesian Government will consider independence or even more automony for its province of Irian Jaya/West Papua.

He said this when answering questions on the border and other relations between PNG and Indonesia on the 51st anniversary of Indonesian Independence. But he said bilateral relations between the two countries will remain stronger in the years to come. He said bilateral relations began before PNG gained independence and this shows Indonesian's commitment to establish cordial relations with PNG.

"Nevertheless, relationships between the two countries have been fluctuating over the years due to border problems, "he said. He further went on to say," As far as multi-lateral relations are concerned Indonesia and PNG will alway support one another through the United Nations, the Non Alligned Movement, Association for South East Asian Nations, the World Trade Organisation and APEC."

Indon troops kill OPM Freedom Fighter.

Friday August 23
JARKARTA: Troops shot and killed one of the kidnappers holding 12 Indonesians hostage during a gun battle yesterday in Irian Jaya province, a government official said.

The troops failed to rescue the hostages, who were kidnapped last week by separatist rebels. About 800 hostages including a squad of anti terrorist comandos have been persuing the kidnappers believed to be a group of 50 armed with rifles, machetes and bows and arrows. The rebels and the troops clashed early yesterday, leaving one of the captors dead, said Lt Col Maulud Hidayat by telephone from Jayapura, capital of Irian Jaya. He gave no further details.

The hostages worked for a PT Kamudan, a logging company who have been clear felling virgin rainforest in the Timika region. Their captors want to trade their freedom for a promise from the Indonesia goverment to stop further environmental destruction. The government has rejected the decision.

"This time there will be no negotiations. We don't want to encourage them with this method. We are going after them said Hidayat."

Copy of Petition Cover Letter to:

Mr. Dick Spring, TD,
Tanaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs,
Iveagh House,
80 St. Stephen's Green,
Dublin 2.

9 September, 1996.

Dear Mr. Spring,
In connection with the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Foreign Affairs resolution, dated 31 January, 1996, which calls on the Irish Government to "request the United Nations to investigate and act on the question of the validity of the 1969 Act of 'Free' Choice", we, West Papua Action, present this petition, collected over six days in Kildare, Portlaoise, Tralee, Cork and Dublin from 4th to 9th September 1996, calling on the Irish Government to sponsor West Papua at the United Nations Decolonization Committee.

We would like to draw to your attention our unease at the manner in which the 15 August 1962 New York Agreement between the Republic of Indonesia and the Kingdom of the Netherlands concerning West New Guinea ( West Irian ) [ UN General Assembly, 17th Session, Agenda item 89, document no. A / 5170; ] was implemented, in particular the commitments undertaken in Articles XVII to XXII.We feel that there is substantial evidence to suggest that the committments given in the above-mentioned articles were not fulfilled. In his report to the General Assembly, [ UN General Assembly, 24th Session, Agenda item 98, document no. A / 7723 ], Mr. Fernando Ortiz-Sans, who had been appointed as the UN Secretary General's representative to "participate in the arrangements for the act of self-determination prescribed by articles XVII and XXI of the [ New York ] Agreement", in his concluding remarks noted [ par 251 ]: "I regret to have to express my reservation regarding the implementation of article XXII of the Agreement, relating to 'the rights, including the rights of free speech, freedom of movement and of assembly, of the inhabitants of the area'. In spite of my constant efforts, this important provision was not fully implemented and the Administration exercised at all times a tight political control over the population."

1, 025 West Papuans voting out of an estimated population of over 800, 000 was not an act of self-determination. We demand, in conjunction with a substantial number of residents of Kerry, Cork, Laois, Offaly, Kildare, Dublin and other areas that the case of West Papua be brought before the United Nations by the Irish Government.

Yours sincerely,

Mark Doris,

Co-ordinator, West Papua Action.


Military Stops Logging in Timika

Date: Wed 18 Sept.
Sender: owner-west-irian-newslist@xc.org

The military has ordered PT Kamundan Raya to stop logging indefinitely for security reasons after 16 of its employees were kidnapped by separatist rebels last month. Major General Johny Lumintang, chief of the Trikora Military Command which is in charge of security in Irian Jaya and Maluku, said yesterday the company would be allowed to resume its operations when security in Timika had returned to normal.

"We cannot say when the company will be allowed to resume logging," Lumintang told Antara in Sorong yesterday. He acknowledged that the order was given because of the kidnapping. Separatist rebels led by Tadius Yogi took 16 Kamundan Raya employees captive on August 14th. Three are still hostage. The Kidnappers have set three conditions for the release of the hostages: Cessation of logging in Timika, involvement of human rights groups in negotiations with the government and the involvement of Amungme tribal leader Tom Beanal in the talks. The government has ruled out any negotiations.

The army has created a special team, led by Col. Frans W. de Wanna, to hunt for the kidnappers in the jungle of Irian Jaya. The troops are helped by tribal people who are more accustomed to the jungle.

Lumintang said that every company which operated in troubled areas like Timika should have the protection of the Armed Forces (ABRI). He did not say whether PT Kamundan Raya, a subsidiary of the Djajanti Group, had involved the Armed Forces in its security arrangements. The employees were kidnapped on August 14th at their base camp, about 60 kilometers north of Timika. "The Armed Forces leadership has made it clear that any company refusing to use security offices will be closed down," Lumintang said.
PT Hutama Karya, a construction company, had its Merauke operations closed down after it refused protection from the Armed Forces, he said. The presence of ABRI members is vital, and the regional military command will not tolerate any company which rejects it," Lumintang said.


Possible charges against Beanal

Date: Wed 18 Sept.
Sender: owner-west-irian-newslist@xc.org
The security forces are mounting a campaign to implicate Tom Beanal, head of the Amungme tribal council, Lemasa, in the kidnap carried out last month by the OPM in the Timika region. From the start, the security forces have sought to implicate NGOs which are active in land rights issues, in particular WALHI, the environmental NGO, in the kidnap. But they now seem to have homed in on Tom Beanal, in an effort to neutralise his fight for the rights of his people against the mining company Freeport/RTZ.

On 3 September, he was summoned by the police for questioning on allegations that he was involved in the kidnap. They say at present that he is being questioned 'as a witness' but that he could become 'a suspect' if they obtain further evidence against him.
It is now being alleged that during military operations against the OPM group involved in the kidnap, a document was found which allegedly said that the kidnap had been conducted on the orders of Tom Beanal. Since the first allegations were made against him, Tom Beanal has vehemently denied any such involvement. According to a report by the national news agency, Antara, Beanal is likely to be charged under Article 365 of the Criminal Code regarding acts of assault with violence, which allows for a maximum sentence of six years, and Article 328 of the Criminal Code on kidnapping, which allows for a maximum sentence of twelve years. According to Indonesian press reports, Beanal has been told to keep the authorities informed if he intends to leave the region. In effect, he is now under town arrest.


Austin weekly sues OPIC on F-M

Wed 18 Sept.

Weekly Seeks Records On Insurance Cancellation
Chronicle Sues OPIC.
by Audrey Duff, Austin Chronicle

On Wednesday, Sept. 4, The Austin Chronicle filed suit against the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC). The move was the latest action taken by this paper in an effort to obtain records, photos, and other documents from the federal agency which last October cancelled its $100 million political risk insurance policy on Freeport-McMoran Copper & Gold's mining operation in Irian Jaya, Indonesia.

The Chronicle filed suit under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas, alleging that OPIC has illegally withheld documents, photos and other records that will allow the public to understand why the agency cancelled Freeport's insurance. OPIC's unprecedented termination has sent shock waves through the international mining industry. It came after years of allegations by environmental groups that tailings from Freeport's mine were causing extensive damage to local waterways. (After arbitration sessions, OPIC agreed in April to reinstate Freeport's insurance, but just until the end of the year.)

"We have been very patient with OPIC," says Chronicle editor Louis Black. "We called them repeatedly to remind them of our requests and we've sent them appeals of their denials. We had no choice but to sue. The cancellation of Freeport's insurance is extremely important not just for the citizens of Austin, but for people around the world who are concerned about the effects of mining and multinational corporations on the environment."

Under the FOIA, OPIC has released more than 3,500 pages of documents to the Chronicle. But most of these are newspaper accounts, and the key documents, produced by OPIC and OPIC's consultants, have been heavily redacted. Any information that might reflect badly on the agency or on Freeport appears to have been deleted.

The suit, known as Robert Bryce and The Austin Chronicle Corporation v. the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, and filed by Peter Kennedy of the Austin law firm of George Donaldson & Ford, says that OPIC has violated the FOIA in several instances, and in others has simply ignored its duties under the law. It claims that "The documents not produced by OPIC, and the information redacted from the documents produced by OPIC, are subject to disclosure" under FOIA, and that by withholding the documents, OPIC is violating the Chronicle's First Amendment rights, and its rights of due process and equal protection.

The suit asks the court to take jurisdiction in the case, and to order OPIC to give the Chronicle all of the information requested under the FOIA, including that which has been redacted.

According to a letter from OPIC's general counsel Charles Toy to Kennedy, the agency is entitled under FOIA exemptions to withhold factual information included in "predecisional, deliberative" documents such as those relating to its decision to cancel Freeport's insurance.


Mining-exchange News & Information Service 9/19/96
World's largest gold mine cancels World Bank insurance contract

by Pratap Chatterjeep
Date: Fri 20 Sept. 1996
SAN FRANCISCO, Sep 19 (IPS) - A World Bank insurance contract for the world's largest gold mine on the island of New Guinea in the South Pacific has been cancelled.

Freeport McMoRan, a New Orleans-based company, operates the gold mine in the central mountains of Irian Jaya. But the company last week informed the World Bank's Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) that it no longer required a six-year-old, 50-million-dollar contract against political risks. Freeport officials have not returned calls from IPS. But a MIGA spokesman said the agency was informed by fax last Thursday of Freeport's ''business decision'' to terminate the insurance contract that was originally signed in1990.

Freeport has a similar, 100-million-dollar contract with the U.S. government's political risk insurance agency, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC). OPIC cancelled the policy last November on environmental grounds but re-instated it in April until the end of 1996.

In a letter to Freeport at the time, OPIC lawyer Robert O'Sullivan cited environmental problems associated with ''acid mine drainage...toxic metals...and the mismanagement of solid and hazardous wastes at the site.'' By Freeport's own accounts, copper and gold extraction at the mine results in the dumping of more than 120,000 tonnes of waste into local rivers every day.

U.S. government sources also say that one of the unstated reasons for the cancellation of the insurance was a series of massacres of local indigeneous peoples by Indonesian army troops who are guarding the mine site. For its part, MIGA had been preparing to conduct its own investigation and was to send a three-member team to Irian Jaya. World Bank sources say that Jim McNeill, a Canadian diplomat at the World Commission on Environment and Development, was to lead the team in the next few weeks, but that Freeport's latest move had pre-empted the trip.

MIGA is, however, playing down suggestions that Freeport's decision to end the contract was tied to the upcoming investigation. The MIGA official stressed that no date had been set for the experts to visit the mine. He argued that clients do have the right to cancel policies, and noted that as of Jan. 30, MIGA had written 223 policies, 177 of which remained on the books.

''Our decision to put together a panel of experts was predicated on a continuing relationship between Freeport McMoRan and MIGA,'' the spokesman said. ''The policy has been cancelled, so that relationship is gone.''

The cancellation is remarkable in light of political troubles on the island. In March, major riots against Freeport resulted in several million dollars of property damage.

Environmentalists in Irian Jaya, who did not wish to be named, told IPS that Freeport's latest move has robbed local groups of the chance to make thecompany accountable to the international community. ''This is not good news,'' one environmentalist told IPS by telephone from Irian Jaya. ''The leverage that we had, and now, that is gone.''

Meanwhile, the Amungme and Komoro tribes in New Guinea, on whose lands Freeport is mining for gold, have brought a six- billion-dollar lawsuit against Freeport over both environmental and human rights issues. The case is before New Orleans courts. Sources in New Guinea told IPS that more than 3,000 people have signed on to the lawsuit.


Freeport continues gold exploration in Indonesia

By Ian MacKenzie
Wednesday October 9 6:51 AM EDT

JAKARTA, Oct 9 (Reuter) - PT Freeport Indonesia is exploring around its huge copper-gold mine in Irian Jaya and is actively drilling at another site to define a copper-gold deposit there, executive vice-president Paul Murphy said on Wednesday.

Freeport's Grasberg mine in the remote and rugged province is "arguably the most valuable single mineral discovery ever made," Murphy told Reuters in outlining current exploration work. "We are currently spending at the rate of about $40 million a year, so we continue to have extremely active grassroots exploration," he said in an interview.

Freeport is 82 percent owned by the U.S. Freeport Mcmoran Copper & Gold Inc , in which the RTZ-CRA group RTZ.L CRA.AX has a 12 percent equity stake. The company says current reserves at the Grasberg mine total more than 1.9 billion tonnes of ore, containing more than 22 million tonnes of copper and the world's single largest gold reserve of 72 million ounces."We are continuing to explore in the immediate area and are finding more. So at the end of the day, we expect it will be more," Murphy said.

"It is further encouraging and supporting our contention that it is a huge mineral district around Grasberg." He said that north of Grasberg, at Wabu, drilling was continuing "to build up a very precise definition" of a gold deposit, with "between two million and four million ounces identified at the present time."

Murphy said detailed exploratory drilling was also under way within the exisiting mining block, known as the "golden triangle" of mineralisation, to delineate deposits at another site, the Kucing Liar (Wild Cat) prospect. He said the company believed there was high grade mineralisation "associated with a very large porphyry copper deposit."

A Freeport statement said that based on current information, the Kucing Liar zone "could represent a 250 million tonne geological resource at an average grade of greater than two percent copper equivalent" -- the value of copper and gold contained in the ore.

Murphy said plans to expand Freeport's Grasberg mill to around 200,000 tonnes from 125,000 tonnes a day were before the boards of Freeport-McMoRan and RTZ-CRA, which will be financing a fourth concentrator and a new coal-fired power plant. Freeport was seeking the necessary government permits and was looking at a start-up date in the fourth quarters of 1998. Murphy said the RTZ-CRA equity deal last year with Freeport McMoRan worth some $500 million had enabled the latter to undertake a corporate restructuring.

RTZ-CRA is putting up some $750 million for the expansion of Freeport's current operation, for which it will get a 40 percent stake in the incremental expansion of the existing Grasberg mine. It is also putting up a further $100 million for further exploration, giving it another 40 percent interest in any new mine.

RTZ-CRA is forming a company in Indonesia to hold its interests in Freeport, the new company's president Michael Noakes said.


Freeport/RTZ deal consummated -Freeport Says RTZ Will Pay Its Mining Unit $184 Million

Wall Street Journal, October 14, 1996

NEW ORLEANS -- Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc. said Britain's RTZ-CRA Group paid its Indonesian mining unit $184 million for exploration and capital needs and signed agreements making RTZ-CRA a 40% partner in the unit's expansion plan.

The mining concern said the agreement will allow it to increase production at its Indonesian mining operations to 190,000 to 200,000 metric tons of ore a day by 1998, up from the current production level of 125,000 tons a day. Freeport said RTZ-CRA will loan the P.T. Freeport Indonesia Co. $450 million, for a total investment of $750 mil lion, to fund the expansion.

In return, RTZ-CRA will receive cash flow from production above 118,000 metric tons of ore a day until the loan is refunded. After that, the British mining concern will receive 40% of the production above 118,000 tons.

Freeport said it will use the $184 million it received last week to pay debt. Freeport said it expects the expansion to cost $960 million, including about $300 million to build a coal-fired power plant. A company spokesman said Freeport is pursuing separate financing for the plant.

In New York Stock Exchange composite trading on Friday, Freeport shares rose 12.5 cents to $31.125.


Freeport Opened Up in More Ways than One.

Originally from: Owner-west-irian-newslist@xc.org (Moderator)
Originally dated: Sat, Nov 09, 1996

Project Underground helped lift the veil of secrecy around the world's largest gold mine by presenting the Overseas Private Investment Corporation a federal court subpoena requiring full disclosure of its knowledge of Freeport's environmental management of the mine. The U.S. District Court Order requires OPIC provide all " applications, correspondences, environmental studies and / or reports, satellite photographs, memos and all other data" relating to the mine in West Papua (Irian Jaya, Indonesia). The subpoena is part of the $6 billion class action suit filed against Freeport by the Amungme and other indigenous people who live around the mine and claim that they are adversely affected by it.

For months OPIC -- which used taxpayer's to underwrite the mine until Freeport cancelled their contract last month -- has been stonewalling citizens trying to get to the bottom of why the agency itself had cancelled its guarantee in 1995 on environmental grounds. OPIC had written to Freeport in October 1995 cancelling their political risk insurance because it "created and continues to pose unreasonable or major environmental, health or safety hazards with respect to the rivers that are being impacted by the tailings, the surrounding terrestrial ecosystems and the local inhabitants".

At least two journalists have sued OPIC under the Freedom of Information Act, in an attempt to see the documents that led OPIC to this decision but which they have kept secret under claims of "business confidentiality".
Steve Kretzmann, Project Underground's Campaign Coordinator, told press that, "This order will allow citizens to begin to see the truth about the impacts of Freeport's operations in Irian Jaya", before serving serving OPIC's Deputy General Counsel, Jane Chalmers, with the subpoena.

The risk of the environmental impact of the mine being scrutinized in court has not however slowed operations on the ground. Plans to not only expand operations at the existing mine infrastructure but also to explore and develop the region around Grasberg have proceeded, against the wishes of the local community. Last year RTZ (prior to its merger with CRA) paid $US500 million for a 12 per cent stake in Freeport McMoRan Inc, the parent company of the Indonesian operating company PT Freeport Indonesia. But in a second leg to the deal this month, RTZ also paid $US750 million for the right to pay its way in any expansions of the existing Grasberg mine and committed a further $US100 million for exploration on the Freeport-operated exploration lease areas.

PT Freport will retain ownership of the existing copper production at Grasberg with RTZ-CRA only entitled to 40 per cent in any incremental expansion of the mine or a 40 per cent share in any new mine developed on the three "contract of work" areas -- allocated by the Indonesian government without consultation or approval by the traditional landowners. Such an expansion is under way, with Grasburg production being lifted from 118,000 tonnes of ore being dug up every day to 200,000. Grasberg is already the lowest-cost copper producer in the world because of its gold content and economy of scale.

The company says current reserves at the Grasberg mine total more than 1.9 billion tonnes of ore, containing more than 22 million tonnes of copper and the world's single largest gold reserve of 72 million ounces. "We are continuing to explore in the immediate area and are finding more," Murphy said. "It is further encouraging and supporting our contention that it is a huge mineral district around Grasberg." He said that north of Grasberg, at Wabu, drilling was continuing "to build up a very precise definition" of a gold deposit, with "between two million and four million ounces identified at the present time." Drilling was also under way within the exisiting mining block, known as the "golden triangle" of mineralisation, to delineate deposits the Kucing Liar (Wild Cat) prospect some distance from the current mine.

SOURCES: Friends of the Earth / Project Underground Press release "Court Subpoena Request Requires OPIC to disclose information on Freeport McMoRan", October 10th, 1996; "Freeport Says RTZ Will Pay Its Mining Unit $184 Million", Wall Street Journal, October 14, 1996; Ian MacKenzie, Jakarta, October 9th, Reuter; Friday October 11th, Australian Financial Review.


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