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Label of terrorists to be just directed at armed Papuans: High police official

Tempo - May 9, 2021

Antara, Jayapura, Papua – The Indonesian government has officially labelled members of armed Papuan groups as terrorists owing to their acts of terror and crimes against innocent civilians, a high police official said.

"The label is just directed at those committing crimes, not members of Papuan communities," Chief of the National Police's Security Intelligence Agency Commissioner General Paulus Waterpauw said.

Members of the armed groups have often committed acts of violence against community members. They do not just force the people to give them food and funds. The notorious armed terrorists also set their houses on fire.

"We must enforce law against the perpetrators," he said in a press statement that ANTARA quoted in Jakarta on Sunday.

The law enforcement operations against these armed Papuan terrorists is a must because Indonesia is a state based on the rule of law, he said.

The Papua conflict should be perceived from a law enforcement perspective because whoever must fulfill Indonesia's rules of law, he added.

Over the past few years, armed Papuan groups have often employed hit-and-run tactics against Indonesian security personnel and mounted acts of terror against civilians in the districts of Intan Jaya, Nduga, and Puncak to trigger a sense of fear among the people.

The recent targets of such acts of terror included construction workers, motorcycle taxi (ojek) drivers, teachers, students, street food vendors, and also civilian aircraft.

On December 2, 2018, a group of armed Papuan rebels brutally killed 31 workers from PT Istaka Karya engaged in the construction of the Trans Papua project in Kali Yigi and Kali Aurak in Yigi Sub-district, Nduga District.

On the same day, armed attackers also killed a soldier, identified as Handoko, and injured two other security personnel, Sugeng and Wahyu.

Such acts of violence have continued this year. On January 6, 2021, at least 10 armed separatist terrorists vandalized and torched a Quest Kodiak aircraft belonging to Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF) on the Pagamba village airstrip.

On February 8, 2021, a 32-year-old man was shot at close range in Bilogai Village, Sugapa Sub-district.

The victim, identified by his initials as RNR, sustained gunshot wounds on the face and right shoulder and was taken to the Timika Public Hospital in Mimika District on February 9.

In a separate incident on February 9, six armed Papuans fatally stabbed a motorcycle taxi (ojek) driver.

A motorcycle taxi driver was shot dead by an unknown gunman in Papua.

On April 8, 2021, several armed Papuan rebels opened fire at a kiosk in Julukoma Village, Beoga Sub-district, Puncak District.

The shooting resulted in the death of a Beoga public elementary school teacher, identified as Oktovianus Rayo.

After killing Rayo, the armed attackers torched three classrooms at the Beoga public senior high school.

On April 9, 2021, armed separatists reportedly fatally shot another teacher, Yonatan Randen, on the chest.

Two days later, nine classrooms at the Beoga public junior high school were set ablaze by an armed group.

Barely four days later, Ali Mom, a student of the Ilaga public senior high school in Beoga Sub-district, was brutally killed by armed attackers.

On April 25, 2021, Papuan separatists, operating in Beoga, ambushed State Intelligence Agency (Papua) Chief I Gusti Putu Danny Karya Nugraha and several security personnel during their visit to Dambet Village.

Source: https://en.tempo.co/read/1460850/label-of-terrorists-to-be-just-directed-at-armed-papuans-high-police-officia