NZ foreign minister to raise West Papua issues with Indonesia

Winston Peters at the select committee today. Photo: RNZ / Charlie Dreaver

WELLNGTON, 21 JUNE 2019 (RNZ PACIFIC) —New Zealand’s Foreign Minister, Winston Peters, says he will raise concerns over human rights abuses in West Papua with his Indonesian counterpart.

Peters was responding to a question from Green Party foreign affairs spokesperson Golriz Ghahraman in a select committee hearing Thursday.

Ghahraman said there had been “concerning” developments in Papua and asked the Foreign Minister if he would raise this with Indonesia.

Peters said he will bring it up with Indonesia’s Foreign Minister, Retno Marsudi when she visits New Zealand soon.

“It is a concern, not just for New Zealand, but particularly with Melanesian countries and our job is to try and help Indonesia solve the problem for us, so that’s what our objective is and we do have a plan to go about it but it will take some time.”

Peters said in March that violence in Papua would have to end before negotiations between rebels and the state could start.

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