One killed, eight arrested in messy raid in Papua

One killed, eight arrested in messy raid in Papua
, 4 December 2010

By: Nethy Dharma Somba

A man was shot dead and eight others arrested Friday in an operation by the Jayapura Police and Wira Yakti Military Command to apprehend the perpetrators of a shooting incident in Nafri, Abepura, on Nov. 28.

The manhunt commenced on Thursday and the dead suspect, identified as Miron Wetipo, was killed at around 00:30 a.m. local time.

“Miron was shot for resisting arrest. Security personnel fired warning shots, which he did not heed, so they were forced to shoot to immobilize him,” Jayapura Police chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Imam Setiawan said.

Imam said the joint team raided the area because of reports that the firearms used in the shooting incident in Nafri were stashed in a house there. The eight people arrested were taken into custody for questioning.

Authorities claim to have recovered two boxes of ammunition at the scene.

“Members of the team used a metal detector to find the ammunition buried in the dirt floor of the half-built house,” Imam added.

While raiding the house, he said, they heard a gunshot and later led a pursuit in the direction of the sound, where five men appeared and attacked them.

“One of the five men, Jack Mabel, was shot and arrested. Three others got away,” Imam said.

The Papua office of the National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM) criticized the violent methods employed by authorities and the extraprocedural killing.

“The reasons behind the killing of Miron Wetipo were unclear. It’s time to stop violence as every person has the right to life,” Papua Komnas HAM deputy chief Matius Murib said in a text message to The Jakarta Post.

Komnas HAM also received a report on the Dec. 1 shooting incident in Bolakme, Jayawijaya regency, in which two civilians, Atili Wenda, and Melius Tabuni, 46, were shot.

In a press statement, Murib urged police not to shoot at civilians when conducting operations, but to use persuasive measures and uphold human rights.