Wamena

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Wamena
Town
Mission Aviation Fellowship Compound near Wamena Airport.
Wamena is located in Western New Guinea
Wamena
Wamena
Wamena is located in Indonesia
Wamena
Wamena
Wamena (Indonesia)
Coordinates: 4°5′51″S 138°57′04″E / 4.09750°S 138.95111°E / -4.09750; 138.95111Coordinates: 4°5′51″S 138°57′04″E / 4.09750°S 138.95111°E / -4.09750; 138.95111
Country Indonesia
ProvincePapua
RegencyJayawijaya Regency
Population
 (2010)
 • Total31,724

Wamena is the capital town of the Jayawijaya Regency of Indonesia. It is the largest town in Indonesian Papua's highlands, in the Baliem Valley and had a population of 31,724 at the 2010 census.[1] Wamena is the urban centre of a rural area housing highland West Papua's highest concentration of population, with over 300,000 people inhabiting the Baliem Valley and surrounding areas. These people belong to a number of related ethnic groups, the most prominent of which are Dani, Lani and Yali.

Because of its relatively isolated location, the main form of access to the area is air travel. The town and the surrounding valley are served by Wamena Airport. Dimonim Air, Trigana Air, Aviastar Mandiri, Susi Air, Merpati and Wings Air serve the airport.

The town is also home to the Persiwa Wamena football team, who play in Indonesia's premier league.

History[edit]

As far as the outside world was concerned, the discovery of the Baliem Valley, where Wamena is located, and the unexpected presence of its large agricultural population was made by Richard Archbold’s third zoological expedition to New Guinea in 1938. On 21 June an aerial reconnaissance flight southwards from Hollandia (now Jayapura) found what the expedition called the ‘Grand Valley’. Since it was almost completely cut off from the outside world, the area was spared by the fightings for the control of New Guinea during World War II. The town itself was founded by the dutch in 1956, as one of the last town founded during their presence in Western New Guinea.[2] Since then the valley has gradually been opened up to a limited amount of tourism.

In 2003, during what would be called afterward the Wamena incident, an unidentified mob led by the Free Papua Movement raided the Indonesian Army's armoury of the town, killing two Indonesians soldiers and stealing several assault rifles.[3][4] Reprisals were harsh, affecting 25 villagers, displacing around 7000 villagers and killing 50 in the process, torture and destruction of properties by the Indonesian army was also reported.[5][6].

During the 2019 Papua protests, several government buildings were destroyed by angry mob, the police and the military retaliated, leaving 16 civilians killed and 65 injured. According to local authorities, the particular set of protests was triggered by a separate racism incident within the city. A Kompas correspondent in Wamena reported that gunshots sounded across the city and that civilians were taking shelter in police stations and military bases.[7] Out of the 16 civilians killed, 13 had come from outside the province, and most deaths occurred as they were trapped in buildings torched by the angry mob.[8] Responding to the protests, the Communication and Information Ministry reactivated the internet blackout in Wamena.[9] Owing to the rioting and unrest, around 15,000 civilians were evacuated from Wamena, with a further 1,726 internally displaced within the town in early October.[10] Going the opposite direction, around 2,000 Papuan students returned from other cities across Indonesia to their home towns and cities, reporting a feeling of intimidation and danger.[11]

Economy[edit]

Wamena market

Wamena claims a broader variety of fresh fruits and vegetables than other regions in Papua. On early June 6, 2013, a modern market was built in the town center to allow traditional farmers to sell their harvests at a proper price.[12]

Wamena airport[edit]

Wamena Airport

The only airport in the region that can accommodate the Indonesian Military (TNI)s Hercules airplanes was razed by fire on September 26, 2011; all buildings including the departure and arrival terminals were engulfed by fire.[13]

Health[edit]

The largely Melanesian town is densely settled and has extreme rates of HIV infection, with a claim of 5,100 cases recorded by Antara News.[14]

16 June 2015, Jayawijaya regional secretary Yohanis Walilo rectified the total HIV cases to 4,521 HIV cases.[15]

Climate[edit]

Wamena features a tropical rainforest climate (Köppen Af), albeit a much cooler version due to its high altitude.

Climate data for Wamena
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 25.1
(77.2)
24.9
(76.8)
24.8
(76.6)
24.8
(76.6)
24.0
(75.2)
23.3
(73.9)
23.4
(74.1)
23.4
(74.1)
24.1
(75.4)
24.9
(76.8)
25.2
(77.4)
25.1
(77.2)
25.2
(77.4)
Average low °C (°F) 13.6
(56.5)
13.7
(56.7)
13.9
(57.0)
13.9
(57.0)
13.8
(56.8)
13.6
(56.5)
13.2
(55.8)
13.0
(55.4)
12.9
(55.2)
13.0
(55.4)
13.1
(55.6)
13.9
(57.0)
12.9
(55.2)
Average rainfall mm (inches) 201
(7.9)
224
(8.8)
223
(8.8)
198
(7.8)
160
(6.3)
132
(5.2)
134
(5.3)
152
(6.0)
153
(6.0)
161
(6.3)
138
(5.4)
189
(7.4)
2,065
(81.3)
Source: precipitation [16]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Biro Pusat Statistik, Jakarta, 2011.
  2. ^ Martin Gostelow, James Hardy (2002). This Way, Indonesia. Hunter Publishing. p.48. ISBN 2-8845-2096-1
  3. ^ "West Papua: Police, Military involved in Papua Abuses". The Jakarta Post. Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization. 9 August 2004. Retrieved 23 November 2019.
  4. ^ "Komnas HAM Temukan Pelanggaran HAM Berat di Papua". Tempo (in Indonesian). 2 September 2004. Retrieved 23 November 2019.
  5. ^ "Gov't Must Address Policy Miscalculations on Papua: Report". Jakarta Globe. 8 November 2017. Retrieved 23 November 2019.
  6. ^ "Dynamics of Conflict and Displacement in Papua, Indonesia" (PDF). Refugee Studies Centre. 2006. p. 44. Retrieved 23 November 2019.
  7. ^ "16 Warga Tewas dan 65 Terluka Saat Kerusuhan Pecah di Wamena, Papua Halaman all". KOMPAS (in Indonesian). 23 September 2019. Retrieved 23 September 2019.
  8. ^ "Violent Protests in Papua Leave at Least 20 Dead". The New York Times. 23 September 2019. Archived from the original on 23 September 2019. Retrieved 23 September 2019.
  9. ^ "Rusuh Wamena, Kominfo Kembali Blokir Akses Internet di Papua". CNN Indonesia (in Indonesian). 23 September 2019. Retrieved 23 September 2019.
  10. ^ "Wamena disebut mulai pulih, sejumlah pengungsi 'enggan kembali'". BBC (in Indonesian). 8 October 2019. Retrieved 4 November 2019.
  11. ^ "Ribuan mahasiswa Papua eksodus: 'Kami pulang bukan untuk kembali'". BBC (in Indonesian). 26 September 2019. Retrieved 4 November 2019.
  12. ^ "John Wempi Wetipo Resmikan Wamena Mall". July 2, 2013.
  13. ^ "Fire razes Wamena Airport". September 26, 2011.
  14. ^ http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2015/05/19/5100-hivaids-cases-detected-wamena.html
  15. ^ "Jayawijaya regency clarifies high HIV prevalence;from google (jakartapost wamena hiv) result 1".
  16. ^ https://en.climate-data.org/asia/indonesia/papua/wamena-kota-600468/

External links[edit]

Media related to Wamena at Wikimedia Commons