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Papua journalist Victor Mambor says yesterday's bombing not first terror attack

CNN Indonesia - January 24, 2023

Jakarta – Senior Papuan journalist and editor of the news website Tabloid Jubi, Victor Mambor, says that yesterday's bomb explosion next to his home in Jayapura was not the first act of terror he has received.

Mambor said he was targeted by acts of terror in 2021 when the breaks on his car were damaged and the tyres punctured. The difference with the most recent attack being that before his car's breaks were damaged, he received threatening phone calls and messages.

With the bomb attack on Monday January 23 meanwhile, there were no prior indications.

"When the car was damaged I did indeed receive threats, first by phone calls from unknown people, then threats not to write 'reckless' articles", said Mambor during a virtual press conference on Tuesday January 24.

Mambor said that the threats were associated with accusations such as being accused of not being pro-NKRI (the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia), and for supporting Papuan independence.

"I [replied] I'm not pro-NKRI, I'm pro-Papuan independence", he said.

Alliance of Independent Journalists (AJI) Chairperson Sasmito also said that the latest act of terror was indeed not the first such incident. Based on AJI's records, aside from vandalising his car, Mambor has also been doxed.

"Bang [Brother] Victor is often the victim, is identity was once disseminated along with an erroneous narrative, in 2021 that was recorded by our advocacy division", said Sasmito.

Furthermore, Sasmito also said that the windows of Mambor's home were also smashed by unidentified individuals in the same year.

"This further reinforces that Bang Victor has been a victim of terror because of his journalistic activities in Papua", he said.

According to Sasmito, yesterday's bomb attack against Mambor was a serious terror attack and threatened the life of the journalists. He also condemned the act.

"AJI Indonesia condemns the bomb attack that targeted Bang Victor", he said. "AJI is pushing for this case be the last such case so it must be followed up and investigated by the police and taken to the prosecutor's office", he continued.

Earlier, Mambor explained the chronology of the seconds before the bomb exploded alongside his house in Jayapura on Monday.

Mambor related how he woke up at around 2 am local time. He went outside his house and opened his laptop to work on something. After that, Mambor went back inside to watch television at around 4 am.

Several minutes later, Mambor heard the sound of a motorcycle approaching his house. The sound of the motorcycle, said Mambor, stopped for several minutes, and then there was the sound of the motorbike leaving.

Not long after it left the bomb exploded at around 4.20 am, just after the call to morning prayers was heard. Mambor said that the explosion was very large and made his house shake.

"I heard a person start a motorcycle, an automatic motorcycle. Then the motorcycle moved off. If it's an automatic it moves off straight away. Less than one minute after they left it exploded", said Mambor at Tuesday's press conference.

"The sound was very loud, I was also shocked because it wasn't like a firecracker, or a gunshot. The sound was very close", he added.

North Jayapura Sectoral Police Chief Senior Commissioner Jahja Rumra meanwhile said that they are conducting an investigation in order to uncover the motive behind the attack. (yla/DAL)

[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "Victor Mambor: Bom Samping Rumah Bukan Teror Pertama".]

Source: https://www.cnnindonesia.com/nasional/20230124140922-12-904223/victor-mambor-bom-samping-rumah-bukan-teror-pertam