Papua Besena (PB)

Papua Besena (“hands off Papua”) was a secessionist movement established in Central District in 1972 to fight for self-government for Papua. It was founded and led by Josephine Abaijah, the first, and one of only three women, elected to the national parliament, and the only woman to lead a political party. During a series of meetings in 1973, Abaijah and a white advisor Dr Eric Wright, argued that Papua would become dominated by New Guinea if it were forced into a political union, Australia should continue to provide aid to support an economic development plan as compensation for past neglect and Papuans should retain Australian citizenship until they could govern themselves.

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