Jakarta – The Jayapura municipal police have declared 20 people accused of being Free Papua sympathisers as suspects on charges of makar (treason, subversion, rebellion). The 20 are part of a group of 34 Free Papua sympathisers who were arrested by a joint team from the Jayapura municipal police on Saturday November 30.
“We arrested the 34 activists as they were preparing to head to the Trikora Abepura Square to hold an event commemorating December 1”, said Jayapura municipal police chief Assistant Superintendant Victor Dean Mackbon in Sentani, Jayapura regency, on Monday December 2 as quoted by the Antara state news agency.
Mackbon explained that the 34 Free Papua sympathisers were from the Dempta district and Sarmi regency West Papua National Liberation Army (TPNPB) who were arrested Saturday. The arrests, he said, took place at the Sentani traffic circle intersection using two police trucks.
“When they were arrested we succeeded in securing evidence in the form of two sets of military fatigues with Morning Star flag symbols, several kinds of sharp weapons and a TPNPB membership card along with documents related to West Papua”, said Mackbon.
Police have released the initials of six of the suspects who have been charged under emergency laws related to the possession of sharp weapons and makar under Article 106 and Article 2 Paragraph (1) of the Criminal Code (KUHP), namely KA, WW, AI, AS, SS and PM.
Thirteen others meanwhile with the initials SK, MI, MS, LI, SJ, RT, CHB, YW, YT, IB, YB, NM and MY have been charged in connection with makar under Article 106 of the KUHP along with one suspect with the initials LK who has been charged in connection with makar and incitement under Articles 106 and 160 of the KUHP. All 20 face a maximum prison sentence of 20 years in jail.
“Meanwhile after questioning the other 14 people they did not meet the criminal requirements [to charge them] so we released them”, he said.
Mackbon said that during questioning the 34 sympathisers admitted to having been ordered to carry out the activities at the Abepura Trikora Square on December 1. He added that police are still looking into who ordered them to do this.
Two dead in firefight
Separately, on December 1 a joint team of TNI (Indonesian military) and Polri (Indonesian police) shot dead two members of an armed criminal group (KKB) in Lanny Jaya regency.
The commander of the 1702/Jayawijaya District Military Command (Kodim) in Wamena, Infantry Lieutenant Colonel Candra Dianto, said on Monday that the exchange of fire took place at Balingga district on Sunday night.
“During the armed contact TNI and Polri personnel sized one revolver and killed two KKB members”, he said.
The two KKB members shot dead were from a group under the leadership of Puron Wenda who has been operating in the Lanny Jaya area.
“After the armed contact yesterday, another one occurred on Monday (December 2) morning, between 7 and 9 am local time”, he said. Sweeps for other members of the group are still underway.
“To confirm if there are other casualties who died or were injured during the armed contact since yesterday afternoon which continued into the morning”, he said.
The bodies of the two dead KKB members will be evacuated to the Wamena Public Hospital in Jayawijaya for identification.
“Meanwhile the security situation in the territorial area of Kodim 1702 Jayawijaya is safe and conducive”, he said.
In Jakarta meanwhile, National Police Public Information Bureau Head Brigadier General Raden Prabowo Argo Yuwono said that there were no commemorations of the Free Papua Movement’s (OPM) anniversary on December 1. (Antara/kid)
According to a CNN Indonesia report on December 1, based on information gathered by the state news agency Antara, the 34 people arrested on Sunday were members and sympathisers of the pro-independence West Papua National Committee (KNPB). No mention was made about members of the TPNPB being arrested.
[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was “Polisi Tetapkan 20 Tersangka Kasus Makar di Papua”.]