Christ Belseran, Central Halmahera, North Maluku – Police have deployed personnel to Central Weda district in Central Halmahera, North Maluku, following a clash between youth groups that started on Christmas Day and left two people injured.
Adj. Sr. Comr. Moh. Zulfikar Iskandar, Central Halmahera Police chief, said that the clash started early on Sunday after a boarding house owner reprimanded several youths who were drinking at the premises.
Fighting continued on Sunday evening between local youths from Waibulen Lelilef village and others from Ambon in the neighboring province of Maluku.
Police and military personnel descended on the area to prevent further violence. Locals set fires blocking a trans-national highway heading to PT Indonesia Weda Bay Industrial Park (IWIP) mining company.
"We have identified the perpetrators. I have ordered their arrest and questioning," Zulfikar told The Jakarta Post on Monday.
The North Maluku Police have deployed Mobile Brigade personnel to secure the area and also the mining company, he said.
Police personnel were also stationed at Weda General Hospital where the victims were being treated.
Zulfikar said that the authorities were communicating with local leaders and village administrators to prevent similar clashes in the future. (dre)