Papua leaders call for Indonesia to withdraw troops

JAYAPURA, Indonesia — Leaders of Indonesia's easternmost Papua region are calling on President Joko Widodo to order the withdrawal of troops and national police from an area where separatists earlier this month carried out one of their deadliest attacks.

Papua province Gov. Lukas Enembe said late Thursday that civilians who fled into the jungle are needlessly suffering. He said the pro-independence fighters are unlikely still in the Nduga area, where a Dec. 2 attack on a trans-Papua highway construction site killed at least 17 workers.

After meeting with members of the provincial parliament and church and tribal leaders, Enembe said Nduga should be free of troops and Indonesian police so residents can celebrate Christmas in peace. The provinces of Papua and West Papua are predominantly Christian regions in Muslim-majority Indonesia.

At the meeting, Papuan officials agreed to set up a task force to investigate the Nduga killings and other violence.

"This is the wish of Papuan people," said Yunus Wonda, head of the Papua parliament, according to local news site TabloidJubi.

"This team is not just for the incident in Nduga. But also for all violence and conflict incidents on the land of Papua which have caused Papuan civilians to be harmed, traumatized or killed," he said.

An insurgency has simmered in Papua since the early 1960s, when Indonesia annexed the region that was a former Dutch colony. It was formally incorporated into Indonesia in 1969 after a U.N.-sponsored ballot that many regarded as a sham.

The Indonesian government has rejected rebel demands to hold negotiations on the territory's right to self-determination.

Earlier this week, security minister Wiranto, who uses one name, said there would be no compromise with an organization the government has labeled a criminal group.

"They are not a country, but a group of people who are heretical," he said.

Indonesia president urges military to stay out of...

Oct 5, 2017

Indonesia's president has urged the military to stay out of politics and remain loyal to the...

Indonesia says Papua villages in standoff with...

Nov 17, 2017

Indonesian police help evacuate more than 340 people from villages in easternmost Papua after...

The Latest: Flights trickle from Bali after...

Nov 30, 2017

Bali's airport is operating at far from its usual capacity after reopening while ash from the Mount...

AP Exclusive: Pulp giant tied to companies...

Dec 20, 2017

AP Exclusive: Indonesian paper giant Sinarmas is linked to opaque network of shell companies that...

Greenpeace calls for investigation into Sinarmas...

Dec 20, 2017

Greenpeace has called for an investigation into the relationship between paper giant Sinarmas and...

Penggerak pasaran mengikut TradingView

About Us

Duniaga is Malaysia’s top local source for business news and information where people head to stay connected with the business news. We give daily in-depth analysis on the business happenings in the country.

Contact us: sales[at]duniaga.com

Subscribe Now!