A Short History of West Papua

Hi West Papua Online, thank you for sharing a very nice article of the history of West Papua.

I would like to add several notes:

A former Dutch colony, West Papua has formally returned to Indonesia in 1969.

The undisputed vote of about 1,025 representative tribal leaders has chosen to join Indonesia.

The United Nations endorsed the result of the plebiscite and the world recognized West Papua as part Indonesia.

West Papuan people have elected the leaders of Papua and West Papua provinces.


Papua and West Papua Provinces of Indonesia (photo: shutterstock)

To understand the current political situation in Papua and West Papua provinces, it is necessary to examine recent history. What is now known as Indonesia was the most important Dutch colony until the end of World War II.

The struggle for independence was a difficult fight for freedom, and the Dutch were very reluctant to give up their jewel in Asia. After the Indonesians, led by President Sukarno, declared independence in 1945, the Dutch did not formally relinquish their sovereignty until the end of 1949 and only after great pressure on the world.

All the regions of Dutch East Indies became the Republic of Indonesia except the Dutch New Guinea or Irian Jaya (hereinafter referred to as West Papua). The Dutch were able to maintain some control over West Papua through some more deceptive tactics until the early 1960s. Please read

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