Tag Archives: Djoko Suyanto

Don’t blame OPM for mysterious shootings, says DPRP member

JUBI, 18 April, 2012
There have been a number of shootings in Papua in recent months but mystery surrounds the problem of who is responsible.Ruben Magay, the chairman of Commission A of  DPRP, the provincial legislative assembly  of Papua, said that  the failure of the police to deal with this problem was a sign of their lack of professionalism. This is what is worrying the Papuan people, ‘ he said ‘What they are doing is far from what the people expects. and hope for.’He said that he had warned the chief of police and the military commander to stop blaming the OPM. Making such claims is a sign of the lack of ability of the security forces.’

‘We can only accuse the OPM if there is clear evidence of their involvement.’ He said that the police should also stop talking about unidentified persons. It is only when someone is arrested and charged before a court of law on the basis of evidence that things become clear.’ We need to make things clear for the people. It is as though the police are trying to conceal their own incompetence.’

He said for a second time: ‘Dont keep talking about the OPM until you have evidence. And don’t talk about geographical problems as the facilities available are the ones that have been provided by the state.. Is anything lacking?’

While the military accuse the OPM of recent shootings, others call for investigations

{This article delicately skirts around the facts of inconsistencies on the military and police versions of the Trigana Air shootings.  It is widely suspected that the “unknown persons” responsible for the shootings – as is mainly the case in Papua – are not the OPM at all, but military sniper units.  see https://westpapuamedia.info/2012/04/09/doubts-grow-of-opm-responsibility-for-puncak-jaya-aircraft-shooting/ }
Bintang Papua, 13 April 2012

According to a statement by the commander of the Cenderawasih  military command, the OPM -Organisasi Papua Merdeka – was responsible for the recent shooting of the Trigana plane at the Mulia Airport, Puncak Jaya. This means that it is necessary for the OPM to be involved in trying to identify  the basic problems surrounding the acts of violence in Puncak Jaya.

The co-ordinator of the Jaringan Damai Papua, JDP, (Papuan Peace Network), Dr Neles Tebay said it is necessary to involve the OPM, not only in order to bring to an end events that have been occurring recently as well as in the past, but also to seek a way of preventing such events from happening again. He was speaking following a meeting between the OPM and the government, and insisted that agreements that had been reached at that meeting should be adhered to.

‘A strategic solution  can be put in place for the long term, bearing in mind that responses to events up to now have been re-active; for instance, when distubances occur, troops are deployed and after tranquillity  has been restored, the troops are pulled back. That might be a good way to tackle things but is it only for the short term,’  he said.

He pointed out that the recent shooting in Puncak Jaya was the second time that shots had been fired. The first time was when a TNI helicopter was shot at, though on that first occasion, the plane shot at was a commercial plane.’

‘Such incidents have been occurring frequently in the recent past, which means that if the government wants to solve the problems in Puncak Jaya , it should recognise the fact that previous problems have not been solved.’

In view of this, the JDP offers two solutions to end the shootings in the region. In the short term, this would mean restoring peace and tranquillity to the area, but the second solution would require the involvement of various stakeholders, including the central government, the provincial government, the TNI and the police, bearing in mind that the military commander has already declared that the OPM was responsible.

The JDP co-ordinator said that these shooting incidents have been occurring at a time when no dialogue is taking place while also taking into account the fact that not only civilians but also members of the security forces have been among the victims.

‘Moreover, there has been no transparency  on the side of the security forces about the results of their investigations. Were projectiles involved and if so, what kind of projectiles. Such things have never been explained to the general public.’

Dr Tebay also said that these shooting incidents had delayed local elections which are under way. ‘If these incidents are not resolved, it could also cause delays in the supply of essential goods for the population,’ he said.

Violence should not be answered with violence.

A member of the Papuan Customary Council, Fadel Alhamid said that violence should not be answered by violence as this can only result in yet more violence. He said that nothing was yet known about who was responsible for the  initial violence; was it the TPN/OPM or unidentified persons?  This only goes to show that the security approach is not the right way to improve the situation in Puncak Jaya. ‘In response to acts of violence, sweepings occur, but such operations spread fear  among the people, who then flee their homes and go into the forests. A more persuasive approach is needed, and this requires the collaboration of all elements in society.’

This means involving political bodies, the churches, customary groups all  of which should be actively involved, bearing in mind that the security approach has a direct impact on the civilian population. If everyone gets together, it should be possible to work out who was responsible for the shooting.

He went on to say that the security forces should carry out its investigations in greater depth so as to discover those elements that are behind the shootings.If it turns out to have been the OPM, there is a way out of the problem. But if unidentified persons are involved, we must be able to find out who they are, what their interests are in  Puncak Jaya and in the Central Highlands such as in Timika, while similar investigations should be conducted with regard to the TPN/OPM.

[Slightly  abridged translation by TAPOL]

Doubts grow of OPM responsibility for Puncak Jaya aircraft shooting

Special Report by Nick Chesterfield at West Papua Media

Monday, April 9, 2012

Concern is mounting in Puncak Jaya that an Indonesian military unit of “unknown persons” seeking to create a security crisis in Puncak Jaya may be behind the April 8 shooting attack on a Trigana Air Twin Otter aircraft in which a Papua Post journalist was killed.

Civil Society representatives, media sources and representatives from the rebel TPN (Tentara Pembebasan Nasional or National Liberation Army) have all cast significant doubt on the Indonesian military claim that Papuan guerrillas were responsible for opening fire on the aircraft. The aircraft came under accurate small arms fire as it was approaching from the Noble airfield in Mulia, Puncak Jaya, forcing the plane to make an emergency landing.

Leiron Kogoya, 35, the Puncak Jaya correspondent covering local elections for the Nabire-based Papua Post, was fatally injured by a gunshot to his neck.

During the landing the injured pilot panicked, according to local media sources, and crashed the plane into the terminal building (shed). Four people sustained injuries from bullet fragments. A child, Pako Korwa, was wounded in the left finger, Jackie Korwa (mother) was wounded in the right shoulder; Dedy or Beby (pilot), was hit in the left ankle, and Willy Resubun (copilot) injured his right hand and fingers.

Papua Police’s public relations head, Commander Yohanes Nugroho Wicaksono, told Tempointeractif.com that the shooters were hiding in the hills 50 metres from the airport. Police had been unable to identify the perpetrators or the guns used in the incident. Yohanes guessed the shooter had used a M-16 or SS1 – the standard issue weapon for the TNI. “We’re still studying what particular type of gun was used,” he said.

Djoko Suyanto, the Coordinating Minister for Political, Justice and Security Affairs condemned the attack and demanded security forces immediately capture the perpetrators, but admitted that the case would likely remain unsolved. “Their actions must be stopped although it is difficult to do this because of the hills and dense forests,” Suyanto said.

A joint team of the Australian-created Detachment 88 counter-terrorism unit,

Australian funded Detachment 88/ Brimob unit near shooting site, Mulia, 2010 (West Papua Media sources)

Brimob snipers and members of the notorious Nabire-based Indonesian army (TNI) Battalion 753 AVT gave chase to the shooters – according to the police statement – but failed to locate the shooters. Perpetrators for “unknown persons” shootings are rarely located by Police in Papua, despite significant intelligence resources and funding provided to the counter-terror units by the Australian Government.

Australian funded Detachment 88/ Brimob unit near shooting site, Mulia, 2010 (West Papua Media sources)

A West Papua rights activist and former political prisoner Sebby Sambon has told Tabloid Jubi that the work is not that of the TPN, and was far from the areas of operation for troops of TPN leader Goliat Tabuni. “If it occurred near the TPN-OPM headquarters in Tingginambut, then accusations (that TPN may be  involved) may make sense,” he said.

However, according to Sambon, TPN/OPM will not shoot civilians. “TPN / OPM (is there) to fight for the people. Period. It is not possible to shoot people.”

Sambon, who is in regular contact through the underground network with Tabuni’s men, said there is a group that was playing at Mulia. “There is a play, therefore, forged evidence. TPN / OPM has made no orders to shoot civilian aircraft, Sambon explained.

Police have accused TPN of involvement without any evidence, according to Sambon. “Is it the TPN / OPM purely firing, or other parties who deliberately do this to create a “project” in Papua?”

“For every event at Mulia, legal facts have never been substantiated,” said Sambon.

Indonesian press outlets are reporting that Indonesian police have conceded that the shooting is the work of “Unknown persons”, Polri Public Information Bureau chief Brigadier-General M Taufik told Vivanews.com that the police could not confirm whether the shooting was carried out by the Free Papua Movement (OPM). “So far we have not been able to ascertain whether or not they are the OPM, and we suspect they are a bunch of strangers,” he told Vivanews.com.

Yet a senior media source told West Papua Media on condition of anonymity, that both Police and military intelligence officers have been sending contradictory SMS messages about the shooting to journalists across Papua. “Two SMS messages about Trigana shooting were received from ASINTEL (Assistant Intelligence Commander of the Cenderawasih military district) and two from Kadivhumas (Public Affairs) Police.”

“Asintel told me that the shooter is OPM, but Kadivhumas Police told me that the shooter were “unknown persons”. This is a common habit known among journalists in Papua. TNI (Indonesian military) will send SMS to journalists to told them that the shooter is OPM. But the police already know who actually did the shooting in the Puncak Jaya and Freeport area. You know, TNI also has many groups that conducted operations in Papua,” the source told West Papua Media.

In a statement obtained by West Papua Media, Indonesian human rights organisation Imparsial suggested that the shootings were carried out as an “outrageous act” by elements that want to destabilize the security situation in Puncak Jaya and take advantage of the chaos. “Shoot civilian aircraft on the holy day of Easter, there are casualties. I guess there is a deliberate manufacture of the situation in Mulia, (so the area) seems to be harbuoring terrorists,” said the Executive Director of Imparsial, Poengki Indarti.

Indarti says that serious investigation must occur into events surrounding the shootings in Puncak Jaya. “I hope the government and security forces act seriously, because Papuans don’t want to dirty their hands with blood of others on Easter Sunday,” she said. “This act was orchestrated to make Mulia a (place) of terrorists, but it is not at all, “said Indarti again. Imparsial urged the police to immediately identify the imposters with sophisticated intelligence sent to Puncak Jaya.

The Alliance of Independent Journalists Papua Branch has also called for Kogoya’s death to be properly investigated by police, and for them not to fall back on the usual defence of “unknown persons”.

In a statement, the Chairman of the Alliance of Independent Journalists Jayapura, Victor Mambor said “The incident is very regrettable. Leiron Kogoya was confirmed as the journalist for Pacific and Papua Post Nabire, and was commissioned by the editors to cover the phase of the elections in Puncak Jaya district.”

“It is clear that Leiron Kogoya was killed while on journalistic assignment, because he flew on the plane ordered by the editors to cover the phases of elections in Puncak Jaya,” said Mambor. According to AJI Jayapura, the police are supposed to ensure the safety of civilians, including journalists carrying out their journalistic duty.

“To his fellow journalists in Papua, (this is a renewed warning) to always be alert and careful in carrying out journalistic duties, since the recent intimidation and violence against journalists in Papua is increasing in intensity.” said Mambor. Victor Mambor is also is editor in chief of tabloidjubi.com.

Journalists in Papua are regularly subjected to violence and intimidation by Indonesian security forces, including direct monitoring by intelligence officers in newsrooms. The Pacific Media Freedom Report 2011 documented cases where at least two journalists have been killed in West Papua, five abducted and 18 assaulted in 2011.


SBY: Non-organic troops to withdraw from Papua, UP4B Suspended

Albert Insaf Tarigan – Okezone

Saturday, December 17, 2011

The atmosphere in the Library Meeting SBY in Cikeas.  (Frederika Korain / PGI)

The atmosphere in the Library Meeting SBY in Cikeas. (Frederika Korain / PGI)

JAKARTA – The Indonesian government has promised to withdraw non-organic troops from non-organic provinces of Papua and West Papua.

The promise was delivered directly by the President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono during a meeting with Papuan church leaders at his residence, Puri Cikeas, Bogor, West Java, on Friday (12/16/2011) night.

The religious leaders present were:

  • Chairman of the Papua GKI Synod, Yemima Kret
  • Chairman of the Baptist Church of Papua, Socrates Sofyan Yoman
  • Chairman of the Kingmi Synod, Benny Giay
  • Martin Luther Wanma
  • Rika Korain

President Yudhoyono was accompanied by Vice President Boediono and several ministers, including Coordinating Minister for People’s Welfare Agung Laksono, Public Works Minister Djoko Kirmanto, National Police Chief Pol Gen Pradopo East, Armed Forces Commander Admiral Agus Suhartono, and Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Djoko Suyanto.

In a press conference at the office of the Guild of Churches in Indonesia (PGI), Jakarta, this afternoon, the religious leaders expressed appreciation for the government’s intentions.   Moreover, in December, most of the people of Papua  will celebrate the feast of Christmas.

“I convey to the President, this month the month of peace, in love, people should be calm. I asked for the violence to stop, it’s time we embraced each other, ” said Chairman of the Synod to Legal Kingmi Benny Giay, on Saturday (17/12/2011).

Hearing the request, said Benny, the President immediately asked the Police Chief and Commander of the TNI in order to stop the violence,  “President command to the Chief of Police and the Armed Forces (TNI) to stop the violence in Paniai, at least during the month of Christmas, “he added.

Pastor Gomar Gultom, also present at the meeting, explained that the President did not mention a specific deadline for withdrawal of non-organic troops. However, it is still regarded as an important step to begin the process of dialogue between Jakarta and Papua.

“The President ordered all non-organic troops to be withdrawn and stop the security approach as preparation for dialogue, (which) is not possible if there is a security approach,” he said.

Gultom referred to the (military) assault by Army and Police in Paniai from 12 to 15 December 2011 that has killed (at least) 15 people.  The official explanation by police is that they seized and occupied the headquarters of the TPN/OPM (National Liberation Army of West Papua). {West Papua Media note: independent human rights activists and church officials have accused TNI and Police of village burnings, helicopter attacks and massive displacement of 20,000 civilians in the campaign – which is still ongoing}.

According to Gultom, dialogue can not happen if at the same time there are security operations in the territory of Papua.   Until now, it is unknown the exact number of non-organic troops stationed in Papua.  Imparsial, a human rights organisation last August claimed there are approximately 30 thousand troops in Papua.  Of these, 14,000 are organic forces under the control of the Cenderawasih region military command.

Gultom said the two sides have not yet determined the dialogue format, nor points to be discussed, as a new opening meeting last night heard similar views. Furthermore, religious leaders are scheduled to meet again in mid-January 2012 in order to formulate the program in more detail.

However, in general, the President outlined the government’s position in the dialogue within a five point framework, namely the integrity of Indonesian territory and sovereignty integrity and sovereignty of Indonesia, Special Autonomy, Acceleration and expansion of development, with special act for affirmative action, and upholding the rule of law against all who violate the law.

“Affirmative action was meant as long as there is injustice against the people of Papua.  So later given the opportunity to them, for example, sitting in the government and so forth, ” he said.

Gultom added, President  SBY also expressed in the meeting his views about the role of the Unit to Accelerate Development of Papua and West Papua (UP4B) led by Lt. Gen. ( ret) Bambang Darmono. The Religious leaders view was that UP4B was formed unilaterally, and without hearing the aspirations of the Papuan people.

“There is a meeting point agreed upon last night.   All points will be evaluated together, and  UP4B will be stopped until results of the joint evaluation are available,” he said.

The religious leaders (repeated their) call for international third-party facilitated dialogue. In addition, they asked the government to release all political prisoners, and to repeal Government Regulation Number 77/2007 that regarding the prohibition of  the use of “separatist” symbols in Aceh, Maluku and Papua.  This regulation is the government’s basis to prohibit raising the banned Morning Star flag, despite Papuan people being legally allowed to fly the flag by the government of former President Abdurrahman Wahid. (ugo/edited by WestPapuaMedia)


West Papua Media Note:  this significant news was confirmed on December 18 during telephone conversations with participants and observers at the meeting and this article is was written at the request of observers, however comment has been sought from other parties.  

West Papua Media Editorial comment:  At the face of it, this appears to be  a hughely positive step and announcement.  However, by refusing to set specific deadline, or measurable and achievable guarantees, it remains to be seen whether this is yet more window dressing whilst still refusing to address the root causes of violence in Papua today: which is the behaviour of Indonesian security forces, and suppression of West Papuan peoples basic human rights to self-determination and freedom from persecution, and their desires for West Papuan independence.

Please contact West Papua Media for contact details for meeting participants.

A Christmas Message to SBY from Papuan Churches

by Andreas Harsono

FOUR PAPUAN church leaders drafted and debated about their letter to President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono while they’re in Jakarta this week. They met Indonesian Coordinating Minister on Politics and Security Djoko Suyantoon Monday, Dec. 12. They spent the next four days to draft the seven-page letter. It was finally signed at about 4pm at the office of the Communion of Churches in Indonesia. They handed over the letter to President Yudhoyono on Friday night at his private residence in Cikeas.They titled the letter, “Pesan Profetis Gereja-Gereja se-Tanah Papua” or the “Prophetical Message from the Churches in the Land of Papua.”

Frederika Korain, a Papuan human rights researcher, thought that it was an important, and histotical moment. She decided to record the moments when the letter was signed.

Rev. Martin Luther Wanma, chairman of the Indonesian Christian Bible Church (blue batik) and Rev. Jemima M. Krey, chairwoman of the Evangelical Christian Church in Papua (black blazer and red scarf) signed the seven-page letter. ©Frederika Korain
Rev. Socratez Sofyan Yoman, chairman of the Alliance of Baptist Churches in Papua signed the seven-page letter. Yoman is also an author. The Indonesian General Attorney Office bans two of his books, Kucuran Air Mata Umat Tuhan di Papua Barat Harus Diakhiri and Pemusnahan Etnis Melanesia. ©Frederika Korain

They prayed and shook hands after signing the seven-page letter. They spent most of their time in the office of the Communion of Churches in Indonesia on Salemba Street, Jakarta. It has a Papua Desk dedicated solely on helping Papuan churches doing their businesses in Jakarta. Rev. Phil Erari, a Papuan priest, an environmentalist and a board member at the Communion of Churches in Indonesia, also attended the signing event.

Rev. Benny Giay, chairman of the Kingmi Gospel Tabernacle Church, spent days to discuss the letter with his colleagues. Giay is also an anthropologist educated at the Vrije University in Amsterdam. When meeting Giay, President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, himself a Ph.D, asked Giay in what field he wrote his Ph.D thesis. ©Frederika Korain
Rev. Martin Luther Wanma, chairman of the Indonesian Christian Bible Church, gestured to Rev. Socratez Yoman when signing his letter. Rev. Wanma is based in Manokwari unlike the other three church leaders with their offices in Jayapura.©Frederika Korain

The seven-page letter has the picture of a dying Papuan freedom fighter, Yawan Wayeni. It says that Indonesian police officer Imam Setiawan had killed Wayeni on Aug. 9, 2009 on Serui Island. Setiawan got a promotion. He became the police chief of Jayapura. On Oct. 13, 2011 he led the use of excessive force to crack down the Papuan Congress after one of the leaders read out the 1961 Papua Declaration of Independence. Setiawan is now the deputy director of traffic management at the Papuan police department.