Chief security minister calls for instant halt to Papua violence

Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Djoko Suyanto has called for an immediate halt to all kinds of violence in Papua. At least two policemen had died in some armed civilian attacks there in the last few weeks.

Speaking to the press after leading a coordination meeting on politics, security and legal affairs, he said all kinds of violence such as had been committed by state apparatus as well as armed civilian groups in Papua must be stopped.

“Peaceful conditions are needed in Papua to continue the efforts to develop the region,” he said.

Djoko also appealed to law enforcers to avoid repressive and excessive actions.

“Any law enforcement personnel violating the law must be punished. Violence must be stopped. So far we had thought that the violence was done by state apparatus only but in fact armed civilian groups were also involved in some cases. These acts are crimes and violate the law,” he said.

Djoko called on all parties to understand that the presence of security forces in Papua was connected with law enforcement.

“Security forces chase armed groups for the purpose of enforcing the law,” he said. Therefore, he hoped what security forces were doing would not be seen a terror or acts of violence.

Djoko said, if security forces carried out their duties in excessive ways they would certainly be punished.

Violent incidents still continued in Papua with the most the recent one perpetrated by an armed civilian group and causing the death of two police officers.

Second brigadier Feriyanto Kaluku and second brigadier Eko Afriansyah were killed in a fire fight with members of the Free Papua Organization (OPM) in Wandigobak in Mulia in the district of Puncak Jaya, Papua, last weekend.

Djoko said security personnel were now still chasing the armed civilians involved in the most recent incident.

Sweeping against illegal arms
Police in Papua will conduct a sweeps against illegal firearms and ammunition possession by civilians following the recent spate of shooting incidents in the province, a spokesman said.

“The police will intensify operations against illegal possession of firearms and ammunition in Papua by air, sea and land,” Papua regional police command spokesman Senior Commissioner Wachyono said on the sidelines of a military ceremony to send off the body of First Brigadier Ridwan Napitupulu who was killed by a mob on Monday (05/12).

Wachyono said the number of shooting incidents in Papua was quite high and had often led to deaths.

He said the perpetrators often did not hesitate to act in public such as in the incidents in Nafri, Jayapura, that claimed four lives, the shooting of the chief of the Mulia police sector, Adjunct Commissioner Dominggus Oktavianus Awes, and others.

He said the weapons in the possession of civilians in the province had been looted or stolen from national military (TNI) and police members.

“Their arms were originally held by local police and TNI members. So far there is no evidence the arms were smuggled in from elsewhere,” he said.

He said the police had so far received no report about arms smuggling into Papua but they continued to anticipate it.

“This must be anticipated because the number of illegal arms held by civilians in Papua is quite high,” he said.

Source: ANTARA News

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Filed under Papua, Separatism

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