Solomon Islands for West Papua

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DEAR EDITOR, we call them our brothers and sister, we call them our wantoks, we share the same skin colour but yet we ignore them when they needed us the most.

The recent confrontation between the members of Royal Solomon Islands Police Force and pro-West Papua activist during the Melanesian Arts festival in Honiara demonstrate how ignorant we are towards our fellow Melanesia brother and sister of West Papua.

We deny them the opportunity to tell the world about the genocides and in human treatment our brother and sister of West Papua faced in the hands of Indonesian invasion.

We have been vocal towards the issue of West Papua, yet our true colours exposed during the MACFEST.

I agree with few people’s view that the Melanesian Arts Festival was an exceptional avenue for Melanesia countries in the region including Solomon Islands to tell the world that the Melanesia people in West Papua have been discriminated socially, physically and spiritually.

We, Solomon Islands have missed a golden chance to advocate for our Melanesian brothers during the Melanesia Arts Festival.

Whether it is due to incompetency, corruption or a simple oversight of due process, this is a matter of life and death and that responsible governments including Solomon Islands needs to get its act together.

Where is our pride as Melanesian brother and sisters? Till today there has been limited action been taken to free our people to which we share identical culture and tradition.

Our country has been so vocal about West Papua issue in both regional and national level however, the fight is at a dead end.

It seems that the rivalry between free-for-all and politic have blinded the pathway for country to help free our Melanesia brothers and sister of West Papua.

We are blood related race, yet we fail to see the chain that bind the inheritance we share as Melanesian people.

Ben Bilua,

USP Laucala Campus

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