TNI ready to clobber GAM if they betray peace deal: Sutarto

Source – September 1, 2005
TNI chief General Endriartono Sutarto (batampro)
TNI chief General Endriartono Sutarto (batampro)

Muhammad Nur Hayid, Jakarta – TNI (armed forces) troops will not remain silent if the Free Aceh Movement (GAM) fails to comply with the substance of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Indonesian government and GAM. The TNI will clobber GAM members who betray the MoU – this is a promise said TNI chief General Endriartono Sutarto.

“The MoU is only an initial instrument for a peaceful Aceh within the corridor of NKRI [Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia] and the UUD [1945 Constitution]. If it turns out that in the process of its implementation [GAM] fails to abide by this, yeah we will clobber [them]. Otherwise it will be very difficult”, asserted Sutarto.

Sutarto conveyed this when answering questions by House of Representatives (DPR) Commission I member Effendi Simbolon on the TNI’s position during a working meeting between the commission and the government at the national parliament in Senayan on Wednesday August 31.

According to Sutarto, the TNI is taking a firm position on the question because of the TNI’s obligation to safeguard the integrity of NKRI. “That’s an obligation. Ready or not yeah, it’s an obligation”, he explained.

Sutarto hopes that GAM will have to immediately surrender 840 weapons in accordance with the MoU starting on September 15. If there are still weapons being held by former GAM members then it will be regarded as a criminal act.

“We will definitely take firm action in accordance with the law which is in force in Indonesia”, asserted Sutarto.

Agreed, yes Sir! (gtp)

[Translated by James Balowski.]