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Opinion

Papua riots reflect deep dissatisfaction with Indonesian rule

Jokowi needs to address economic, political and social grievances

| Indonesia

In August, riots which started in East Java, Indonesia, in response to the involvement of soldiers and security officers persecuting Papuan students, spread to the provinces of Papua and West Papua. The students had been demonstrating to express their disappointment and dissatisfaction toward Indonesian government policies in Papua.

The riots took hold fast in Papua because it has faced a long period of discrimination, not only sociocultural but also economic and political, by central government, especially under President Suharto. In 2014, a member of the Papuan Consultative Assembly told me that "it was wrong to be born as a Papuan."

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