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Moeldoko warns Papuan separatists that soldiers will take firmer action

Tempo - April 27, 2023

Fajar Pebrianto, Jakarta – Presidential Chief of Staff Moeldoko issued a warning to separatist groups in Papua who have committed human rights violations against civilians, women, and children, in the form of murder and rape.

"TNI and Polri [Indonesian Military and National Police] will take firmer steps, especially for the three regencies where we see progress is getting worse," said the former military commander in an official statement, Thursday, April 27, 2023.

Moeldaoko made this statement in the midst of various worrying conditions occurring in the country's easternmost province, one of which was the hostage-taking of New Zealander Philip Max Mehrtens. In an effort to release the Susi Air pilot, a soldier Miftahul Arifin died in the Mugi-Mam area, Nduga.

Mifathul was shot dead by the Papuan armed group or KKB on Saturday, April 13, at 16:30 local time. To date, five soldiers died during the operation. TNI Commander Admiral Yudo Margono thus raised the status of the rescue operation to combat ready.

Moeldoko explained that out of 6 provinces and 42 cities/regencies in Papua, only 3 districts are categorized as red zones because of rampant violence cases, namely Nduga Regency, Intan Jaya Regency, and Puncak Regency. The cases, he added, include rape and murder which were mostly directed at civilians and even children.

To create stability, Moeldoko said President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo issued Presidential Instruction No. 9 of 2020 concerning accelerating the development of Papua's welfare. He underlined that the government will not stop continuing the development projects amid the violence cases. "The President asserts that regardless of the situation, development in Papua will proceed."

Source: https://en.tempo.co/read/1719448/moeldoko-warns-papuan-separatists-that-soldiers-will-take-firmer-actio