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Disruptive protest at Brisbane weapons company

The head office of weapons manufacturer Boeing has been occupied by a West Papuan solidarity group in Brisbane today. Activists have erected a memorial to murdered West Papuan civilians in the arms company’s lobby to commemorate over 30 civilian victims of military violence during 2020-21.

Boeing Apache helicopters are currently strafing villages in the Puncak and Intan Jaya regions of West Papua, after Indonesian President Widodo declared a major offensive against ‘separatists’ in the region.  Civilian casualties have yet to be counted. The attacks have caused a refugee crisis, with thousands of Papuans fleeing their homes and farms to escape the Boeing aircraft.

“Wipe them out, we can talk about human rights later” was the injunction given by the head of Indonesia’s parliament, Bambang Soesatyo, on April 26, as the Indonesian parliament declared the ‘OPM’ or Papuan Independence Organisation to be a terrorist group. [1] Additional troops, including Australian trained anti-terrorist D88 forces, are deploying to West Papua daily. Boeing profits from attacks on West Papua through lucrative sales to the Indonesian army, TNI.

Boeing is poised to sell 36 new F15EX fighter jets to Indonesia’s air force after meeting with Indonesia’s Defence Minister Prabowo Subianto in October 2020. [2] The F15EX deal, negotiated after the Trump administration dropped a visa ban against Prabowo, is worth $USD billions to Boeing. Prabowo had been banned from entering the US under legislation prohibiting known war criminals from obtaining visas. Now Defence Minister, Prabowo was once head of the notorious special forces unit Kopassus and stands accused of multiple crimes against humanity.

Activists in Boeing’s Brisbane office are calling on the weapons manufacturer to cancel the deal with TNI, accusing the company of ‘collateral murder’.

Contact: Margaret Pestorius  0403 214 422

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[1] https://www.cnnindonesia.com/nasional/20210426114223-32-634743/ketua-mpr-tumpas-habis-kkb-papua-urusan-ham-bicarakan-nanti

[2] https://asianmilitaryreview.com/2021/02/indonesia-eyes-french-us-made-aircraft-for-air-force-recapitalisation/, https://asiatimes.com/2021/02/indonesia-to-arm-up-with-rafale-f-15-fighter-jets/

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