Monday, February 26, 2007

Australia "does not" support separatist causes

Comments on criticism of the proposed Indonesia-Australia Treaty by Gillian Bird, a deputy secretary of the Australian Department for Foreign Affairs to Radio Australia:

"This agreement is unique; it is Australia's first security treaty with a regional government focussing on both traditional and non-traditional security threats. It should set a benchmark for the region ... It contains a clear undertaking of support for each other's territorial integrity, which is an unambiguous treaty level statement that Australia does not in any way support separatist causes in Indonesia.

"Australia strongly supports the development of Papua as a stable and prosperous part of the Republic of Indonesia. This is best done through the full and effective implementation of special autonomy and respect for human rights ... Access to Papua I think is an important issue; it's one that we do raise with the Indonesians. We would like to see access to that area; certainly we have had embassy access which we think is important. Certainly that issue of access is one that we do raise."

Bird's use of "Papua" appears to cover both Papua and Papua Barat (West Papua) provinces in Indonesian New Guinea.

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