Jayapura, Jubi – Commander of the XVI Yahukimo Defense Area Command Elkius Kobak of the West Papua National Liberation Army (TPNPB) claimed to have attacked and shot members of the Indonesian Military (TNI) in Yahukimo Regency on Wednesday, March 1, 2023/This was stated in a written statement delivered by TPNPB spokesperson Seby Sambom.
Kobak said TPNPB troops attacked TNI soldiers on Paradiso Street, Dekai District at around 3:30 p.m. Papua time. He said the attack killed one soldier.
"We shot a soldier and injured five people," Kobak said. According to him, he received the information directly from members of the TPNPB in the field.
Yamue Battalion leader Kopi Tua Heluka said he shot TNI soldiers to drive them out of West Papua. "We carried out the shooting as TPNPB, in accordance with international humanitarian law," he said.
Heluka said TPNPB will continue to fight until Papua becomes independent. "We will not step back to fight the Indonesian colonial apparatus. We fight with dignity as the West Papuan nation," he said.
Previously, XVII/Cenderawasih Military Regional Command spokesperson Col. Kav Herman said that the shooting that occurred at Kilometer 4 of Paradiso Street killed one soldier and injured two others. Herman also said that the crossfire between TNI and TPNPB in Dekai continued until 4:20 p.m.
"The fallen soldier is First Pvt. LW. While the other two soldiers who suffered gunshot wounds are Private NS and Sergeant RS, both are currently treated at Yahukimo Hospital," Herman said in Jayapura City on Wednesday. (*)