Police arrest 12 suspected OPM members in Papua

Police in Papua have arrested 12 suspected separatist Free Papua Organization (OPM) members who had attacked a security post in Mulia, Puncak Jaya and burned a government office on October 5, 2011, a spokesman here said.

“Our team on November 22, 2011 caught 12 alleged members of the OPM and has brought them to the local resort police station. Another one known by his initials as SW was shot dead while trying to escape,” head of the National Police Headquarters` public relations division, Inspector General Saud Usman Nasution, said here on Thursday (24/11).

The 12 arrested suspects were identified by their initials as JT, KW, YW, SP, AT, KT, KW, WT, PT,MT, S alias P and YW, he said.

“They were hiding in a honai (traditional Papuan house) when police arrested them. Police first separated those who were indigenous Papuans from those who were not. They were then checked and interrogated to classify those who were members of the group of trouble makers. Later the results will be verified during investigation,” he said.

Saud said, after carrying out their actions, they had escaped to a village but the police could not as yet confirm if the villagers had helped them hide.

“We cannot as yet say if they had received help because they entered a villager`s home and the owner was afraid to report them,” he said.

He said the police were now still investigating them to see if they were also involved in the killing of Mulia district police chief Adjunct Commissioner Dominggus Oktavianus Awes at Mulia airstrip in Puncak Jaya on October 24.

The killers numbering two were believed to be members of OPM who suddenly attacked Dominggus and grabbed his gun and with it shot him in the nose and neck.

In connection with the incident the National Police`s Crime Investigation Agency had sent three teams to Papua to find the killers.

“We need strong teams. Even we are helped by the TNI (military) to chase them,” the agency`s chief, Commissioner General Sutarman said.

Source: ANTARA News

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