Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu lent his considerable influence to the #BackTheSwim campaign #LetWestPapuaVote that was launched in the British Parliament at the Palace of Westminster on January 24th.

#BackTheSwim is the world’s largest Global Petition for West Papua in support of the Westminster Declaration for an Internationally Supervised Vote for West Papua.

After leaving Westminster, the petition is being signed by friends of West Papua until August 2017 when it will make its final journey carried by the Swim for West Papua team 69 km across Lake Geneva into the hands of the United Nations.

The Free West Papua Campaign states, “West Papua’s fight for self-determination has gained so much support over the years. This is our opportunity to harness the support of individuals and groups across the world, to add our voices together, and call on those in power to put an end to Indonesia’s 55-year reign of terror.

Supporters can follow, share and re-tweet online social media messages, sign and share the petition as widely as possible, and follow the Swim for West Papua Team’s journey as they train for their swim.”

The Westminster Declaration Explained by the Free West Papua Campaign

The campaign for an Internationally Supervised Vote in West Papua is the main focus of the campaign.

The Westminster declaration is a statement of key principles for the self-determination of West Papua. It includes condemnation of human rights abuses, recognition that the so called “Act of Free Choice” (that illegally gave West Papua to Indonesia in 1969) was farcical; that the Papuan people are at risk of extinction and calls for an internationally Supervised vote for West Papua. The declaration is paramount in the struggle for independence for West Papua, as the vote will finally give West Papuans the opportunity to decide their own future. This is THE vote they were denied in 1969, and is the crucial step towards independence and the end of the genocide.

We need everyone’s help to raise the profile of West Papua, and push the issue on to the United Nation’s agenda urgently.

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