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Self-Determination Abandoned: The Road to the New York Agreement on West New Guinea (Papua), 1960-62

From: Indonesia
Number 95, April 2013
pp. 9-24 | 10.1353/ind.2013.0006



The decolonization process of (West) Papua was a complex one. Retained by the Netherlands when it recognized Indonesian independence in 1949, the territory then known as West New Guinea (other names include West Irian, Irian Jaya, Papua, and West Papua) was under Dutch rule until 1962. This article highlights the gap between the rhetoric of self-determination, and the way in which self-determination for the indigenous Papuans was abandoned in the course of negotiating the end of Dutch rule in 1962 and the transfer to Indonesian rule, with no account taken of Papuan voices or desires.

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