Jakarta – The Papua Police have named 13 people suspects for allegedly having been behind the recent deadly unrest in Wamena, Jayawijaya regency, which caused tens of thousands of residents to flee their homes.
Ten suspects, whose ages range from 16 to 40 years, were already in the custody, while the remaining three are still at large and being hunted by the police, Papua Police spokesperson Sr. Comr. AM Kamal said on Monday.
"The three wanted [suspects] are categorized as provocateurs and are allegedly involved in the KNPB [National Committee of West Papua] and the ULMWP [United Liberation Movement for West Papua]," Kamal said as quoted by kompas.com.
The Indonesian government has blamed both the ULMWP, led by UK-based Papuan exile Benny Wenda, and the affiliated KNPB for orchestrating the unrest that broke out on Sept. 23.
Police investigators claimed they found indications the three were involved with the groups after collecting the testimony of the arrested suspects and witnesses, he said.
Wamena saw violent unrest on Sept. 23 as a mob, reportedly of native Papuans, set hundreds of buildings, including shophouses and government offices, and cars on fire and attacked other residents with weapons.
The turmoil, which the government estimated to have caused material losses amounting to Rp 479.5 billion (US$33.8 million), claimed the lives of at least 33 people, most of whom were non-native Papuans, and injured at least 76 others, according to authorities.
As of Sunday, about 1,726 residents were still staying at a number of evacuation sites, while another 15,544 had left Wamena for other cities across the country after the riots, the Social Ministry said.
Kamal said the police would possibly name more suspects. (gis)