West Papua is home to Asia’s largest remaining rainforests, indigenous communities and unique species. But this exclusive 101 East investigation reveals how Korean-run companies are allegedly engaging in questionable deals as they buy up forests to develop palm oil plantations. Featuring rare access to a restive Indonesian province usually off-limits to journalists, we meet tribesmen who allege that Posco International and Korindo are plundering their land for a pittance. Both companies deny all allegations including fraud and human rights abuses. Selling Out West Papua was produced in collaboration with Mongabay, The Gecko Project and the Korea Centre for Investigative Journalism.
Tag - west papua
Indigenous Auyu people in Boven Digoel, Papua, are living under the shadow of an environmental disaster. The Tanah Merah project is a plan to log billions of dollars-worth of precious timber from a vast area of pristine rainforest, raze what remains and replace it with oil palm. The project falls across one of the most important tracts of rainforest left in the world. The Auyu rely upon it for their livelihoods. The destruction is just beginning today, but already a vast area of forest has been destroyed. “All the natural resources that God has given us… It feels like the clouds have fallen,” an elder from Anggai told us. “All destroyed in an instant.”
Read the full story at www.thegeckoproject.org
The Malind Anim tribe in Zanegi Village, Merauke, Papua, Indonesia are hunter gatherers who rely on the forest for they livelihoods. They are born, raised and get food from the forest. But in the village of Zanegi, times have changed. The Medco corporation is clearing thousands of hectares of forest. Medco plans to convert 169,000 hectares of land to industrial tree plantations. This plantation is part of the milion hectare Meruake Integrated Food and Energy Estate, known as MIFEE.
Indonesian civil society delegates travel to Brussels to urge European Union (EU) member states to outlaw illegal Indonesian timber entering their markets. One delegate, a Papuan tribal leader, speaks on behalf of his community. These meetings and the continued work of Indonesian civil society has meant that they have now been officially recognised as an integral part of the negotiations between the EU and the Indonesian government on illegal logging.