The separatist Free Papua Organization(OPM) on Friday (5/8) admitted that it was responsible for a series of recent attacks against the military in Puncak Jaya district.
“We’re responsible for the series of shootings against TNI [Indonesian military] soldiers and posts, as well as their helicopter,” said Anton Tabuni, the secretary general of the group, known as OPM, in the Pegunungan Tengah region.
“The act is our way of not recognizing Papua as part of Indonesia.”
The OPM has recently launched a wave of deadly attacks against the military, killing at least two soldiers and wounding seven more.
Anton said that the OPM rejected government efforts to convince the separatists to accept Indonesian rule.
“We’ve decided an independent Papua is a final price, so we will continue to fight for the independence of Papua.”
He added that the group would continue carrying out guerilla-style attacks against the military and local police.
Anton also said that the OPM was burning Indonesian flags raised in Puncak Jaya.
He said the acts were undertaken in the hopes of publicizing the separatist movement in the hopes of winning the support of the United States or United Nations.
Maj. Gen. Erfi Triassunu, the head of the Cendrawasih Military Command that oversees operations in Papua, conceded that countering the OPM attacks was an uphill battle.
“We’re overwhelmed. They really master the field of Puncak Jaya,” Erfi said.
Source: the Jakarta Globe