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Arnold Ap, Assassinated West Papuan Singer

Arnold Ap (1 July 1945 – 26 April 1984) was a West Papuan leader, an anthropologist, a cultural icon, and a musician. He was the leader of the Mambesak group, and curator for Museum Universitas Cenderawasih. He broadcasted his cultural shows on weekly radio.

Many saw Arnold’s studies, cultural works of arts and philosophy as a threat against the Indonesian government’s campaign for nationalism and Papuan identity (Jakarta version). He was arrested and detained by the TNI’s Special Forces (Kopassus, or Kopasanda as it was called) in November 1983.

In April 1984, he was shot dead. In June 1984, the then Indonesia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Mochtar Kusumaatmadja said in a press conference that Arnold broke away from prision and used a boat. The boat was intersected by the military patrol and the government claimed that the runaway boat opened fired at the patrol. The military had to fire back and resulted the death of Arnold, whom the minister tagged “an OPM (Free West Papua Movement) separatist. His funeral was mourned and attended my tens of thousands in Abepura, Papuans and non-Papuans.

“Maybe you think what I’m doing is stupid, but it is what I think I should do for my people before I die.”

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Videos: Indonesian Migrant Workers and the 2014 Elections

As Indonesia gears up for legislative elections on 9 April, over 6 million of its citizens who are currently working abroad are also expected to vote – though some may not get a chance to at all.

The above video by Crossroads participant Al Mundir, looks at the hopes and realities of potential voters in Malaysia.

While prominent NGOs have urged the workers to select candidates who will act to protect their rights and welfare, many still fear going to their respective polling centers as they lack proper documentation.

Migrant Care, an NGO which focuses on Indonesian migrant workers worldwide, claims that the majority of MPs are not concerned with migrant workers. It has produced the above video to highlight this and other issues. Migrant Care will also be monitoring the overseas vote over fears of manipulation.

Overseas voting began on 30 March in China and Hong Kong, and continues in countries such as Singapore and Malaysia on 6 April.