Police on the Hunt for Shooter in Papua

Police on the Hunt for Shooter in Papua

The Jakarta Globe
Arientha Primanita

Armed violence erupted again in Papua Province on Friday morning leaving one man injured after a shooting incident by what police believe was a member of the Free Papua Movement, or OPM, separatist group, National Police spokesman Insp. Gen. Abubakar Nataprawira said.

Abubakar said intelligence officers from the Puncak Jaya subdistrict police, along with nine Mobile Brigade officers from the provincial police, were currently in pursuit of the perpetrator.

"The shooter shot twice, first hitting a man and the second shot hitting an oil drum in a car," Abubakar said.

He said a man named Andreas was injured by a shot that grazed his forehead.

Abubakar said Andreas was sitting in the back of a pickup truck as it was crossing a bridge at the Kurage River in Puncak Jaya district.

The shooter, Abubakar said, fired at the car from high a nearby mountain.

"The suspect fled to somewhere up the mountain after the shooting," Abubakar said, adding that this was a typical separatist tactic.

In January, a group of 20 people believed to be members of the outlawed OPM attacked the Tingginambut Police station, also in Puncak Jaya district.

The group were armed with SS-1 assault rifles and stabbed the wife of an officer who happened to be at the station.

Police then shot dead two suspected group members, Yendedak Wenda Muli and Yembinas Murib, during a police patrol.

The two men were carrying guns when they ambushed the patrolling officers along with several other armed men.

Military officials in the area suspect that the attackers belonged to a group of OPM members led by Goliath Tabuni, the alleged leader of OPM in the area.