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House supports police action against Papuan People's Congress

Detik.com - October 20, 2011

Hery Winarno, Jakarta – The House of Representatives (DPR) says it supports the firm actions taken by police in dealing with the Papuan People's Congress, which they consider to be subversive and threaten the integrity of the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia (NKRI).

"The measures taken by security forces were correct. I call on the national chief of police to coordinate with the TNI (Indonesian military) commander to act firmly against unilateral accts that are aimed at rebellion", DPR deputy speaker Priyo Budi Santoso from the Golkar Party told journalists at the DPR building in Senayan, Jakarta, on Thursday October 20.

According to Santoso, the declaration of a Papuan president and prime minister during the congress was an act of rebellion and the state, through its security forces, cannot allow such things to happen.

"Before the declaration, I asked for the widest possible opening of space for dialogue, but after such a declaration firm action must be taken. We have to fight for every single inch of NKRI's territory", he added.

The Papuan regional police have declared five people as suspects in a case of alleged subversion in relation to the congress. One of those that has been declared a suspect is Papuan Traditional Council (DAP) chairperson Forkorus Yaboisembut.

"Aside from Forkorus, the three others that have been charged under the subversion articles are Edison Waromi, Aubus and Dominiqus", said Papua District Police public relations bureau chief Senior Commissioner Wachyono when contacted by Detik.com on Thursday.

Wachyono explained that the police have strong evidence that the suspects were involved in subversion or rebellion. When the congress was held on the Zakheus soccer field in Abepura on Wednesday October 19, they were known to have declared the formation of the Federated State of West Papua, flew the Morning Star flag and declared Forkorus as president and Edison as prime minister.

"This is a violation. We have documentary evidence", explained Wachyono. In addition to this, another person was declared a suspect and charged under Article 2 Paragraph 1 of the 1951 Emergency Law. "Under the name Gatwenda, who is known to have been carrying a sharp weapon without a permit", he added.

The suspects are being held at the Papuan regional police headquarters and are still undergoing questioning. Wachyono also guaranteed that no violence was used by police officers or TNI soldiers in breaking up the congress.

"We provided a permit for the congress because originally the event was to be held to discuss the basic rights of Papuan society. The congress, which is the third, instead issued a declaration like that", he explained. (her/anw)

[Translated by James Balowski.]