A Liberation Army spokesman, Akouboo Amatas Douw, has accused the TNI and police of numerous indiscriminate attacks on Papuan communities in the Highlands region this year. His statement was in responds to the death of two more members of West Papua Liberation Army.

The Australia-based spokesman said the international community should pay attention to the conflict in Papua, especially since Indonesia took up a seat at the UN Security Council. He has accused the TNI of “cruelty”, “barbaric” actions and killing innocent civilians from villages in remote Highlands regions around Puncak Jaya, Nduga, Timika and Lanny Jaya.

“Even uncounted thousands civilians were displaced until today no one care about their lives,” Douw said. “The 56 years of Indonesian occupation in West Papua resulted systematic genocide, massive human rights and humanitarian crisis by their military operation at large.”

However, Douw statement was not supported by the said Liberation Army’s attitude. A spokesman of the Indonesian Military in West Papua, Colonel Infantry Muhammad Aidi, responded that the incident could not be avoided. It was stemmed from a murder of a motorcycle-taxi driver in the area.

A motorcycle-taxi driver, Yanmar (42 years old) was shot dead in the head by an armed separatist criminal group in Lanny Jaya, Papua. Yanmar’s body was found in Popome Village, Mokoni District, West Papua at 1:00 PM (East Indonesia Time; UTC + 9) November 2, 2018. A witness with the initials NA found and identified victims lying on the road. NA immediately reported the incident to the authorities.

On November 3, 2018, the joint Indonesian Armed Force and Indonesian Police team, led by Lanny Jaya Resort Police Chief Adjunct Senior Commissioner Tony Ananda, evacuated Yanmar’s body in Popome, West Papua. However, the evacuation process did not go smoothly.

When the evacuation process took place at 3:45 PM, the joint team were ambushed with shots from a height. Exchange of fire with Free West Papua group led by Porum Okiman Wenda was unavoidable.

The gunfire lasted for 2 hours. The joint team was finally able to push the separatists back into the forest. After conducting sweeping around the scene, the joint team found two members of the separatist group killed. These two people were identified as Gomes and Kulomabuk. Of the two, the security forces took two spoiled firearms from the Pirime Sector Police, West Papua, in 2012.

Even though the evacuation experienced problems, Yanmar’s body could finally be sent to Wamena, West Papua. The body was returned to his family in Makassar on November 4, 2018.

While the West Papua Liberation Army side called Indonesian military killed many innocent people, why do this Liberation Army has the heart to shot dead an innocent motorcycle-taxi driver in the head? Just a few weeks ago, the Liberation Army had also taken hostages of volunteering teachers and medics; threatening and even assaulting them. Does their attitude in line with what they have accused to Indonesia? Are being a Liberation Army member grants you a way to do such crimes?

Ramdhani, Jabbar. (November 3, 2018). Tukang Ojek di Lanny Jaya Papua Tewas Ditembak KKB. Retrieved from detikNews: https://news.detik .com/berita/4285571/tukang-ojek-di-lanny-jaya-papua-tewas-ditembak-kkb, 2018.
Harahap, Lia. (November 4, 2018). 7 Jam Baku Tembak di Papua, TNI-POLRI Rebut Balik Senpi dan Tewaskan 2 Anggota KKB. Retrieved from Merdeka.com: https://www.merdeka .com/peristiwa/7-jam-baku-tembak-di-papua-tni-polri-rebut-balik-senpi-tewaskan-2-anggota-kkb.html, 2018.
Siagian, Wilpret. (November 4, 2018). TNK-KKB Baku Tembak, 2 Orang Tewas. Retrieved from detikNews: https://news.detik .com/berita/d-4286463/tni-kkb-baku-tembak-di-papua-2-orang-tewas, 2018.
(November 5, 2018). Two Liberation Army members killed in latest Papua fighting. Retrieved from Radio.NZ: https://www.radionz .co.nz/international/pacific-news/370266/two-liberation-army-members-killed-in-latest-papua-fighting, 2018.

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