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Deakin Speaking

West Papua’s limited hopes for the future

After a half a century of incorporation as part of Indonesia and following a period of broadly declining violence in the half island of West Papua, the past year has seen a marked upsurge in Papuan-initiated violence. This increased violence appears to demonstrate that, even after so much time, anti-Indonesian sentiment is as strong as […]

Q+A in East Timor’s future

My answers to some questions by an Agence-France Presse journalist ahead of Timor-Leste’s celebration of the 20th anniversary of its vote for independence: · What are the key developments politically, economically and socially in East Timor since 1999? A: The development of the Timor Sea fields has allowed Timor-Leste to get on its feet and […]

Review: ‘Working for the world: the evolution of Australian Volunteers International’

Working for the world: the evolution of Australian Volunteers International Peter Britton Australian Scholarly Publishing, Melbourne If two approaches can be said to reflect many Australians’ approach to assisting others, they are probably volunteerism and working with communities. It was this approach which characterized Australia’s Volunteer Graduate Scheme (VGS), which from the early 1950s pioneered […]

Sri Lanka bombings; the wheel of violence continues to turn

For a country which gave the world the word ‘serendipity’, from an early Arab trader name for the island, Sri Lanka has been subject to extremist violence almost from the outset. Easter Sunday’s coordinated bomb blasts in the capital Colombo, which killed almost 300 and injured hundreds more, were just the latest event in a […]

War ‘declared’ in West Papua

On the last day of January 2019, the Free Papua Organisation (OPM) announced in Port Moresby that it recognized that West Papua was in a state of war with Indonesia and supported the OPM’s military wing, the National Liberation Army of West Papua (TPNPB) is its own declaration of war against Indonesia early in 2018. […]

Jokowi releases a monster

In the next day or so, Indonesia’s Abu Bakar Bashir, the so-called ‘spiritual head’ of Jema’ah Islamiya which launched the 2002 Bali bombing which killed 202 people, including 88 Australians, will be released from prison. He will be released under a presidential pardon by President Joko ‘Jokowi’ Widodo. Unsurprisingly, Bashir’s impending release has generate much […]

Brexit vote to take the UK into uncharted territory

The vote by the UK parliament on whether to accept the European Union deal for an agreed exit of the UK from the EU on Tuesday (UK time) will mark the most important decision to be taken in that country’s post-war history. And it is very likely that the UK parliament will take the worst […]

West Papua violence escalates

West Papua is in turmoil with the killing of 31 construction workers and a soldier, widespread protests and the arrest of 537 West Papuan activists across Indonesia. These events follow what West Papuan sources say have been the killing of numerous villagers in recent weeks. Taken together, these events mark a significant escalation of the […]