Kamis, 16 Juli 2009

Papua Council wants independent investigation into Freeport incident

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The Papua Council Presidium (PDP) has called on the central government to form an independent team to investigate a series of shooting incidents near a gold and copper mine in Papua.PDP secretary general Thaha M. Alhamid said on Thursday the team probing the shootings on the road to Freeport Indonesia's Gresberg mine could include people from the government, security authorities and members of civil society strongly committed to disclosing the truth behind the incidents. "Let's support an independent investigation to find facts, what and who are behind this incident," Thoha told Antara news agency on Thursday.

Five shooting incidents occurred in the past few days along the road between the town of Timika and the Grasberg mine, killing three people: an Australian working for Freeport, a Freeport security guard and a police officer, as well as injuring several other security officers.Authorities initially named Free Papua Organization (OPM) leader Kelly Kwalik as the suspected mastermind of the attacks, but official statements now refer to an armed group of professional marksmen.

The National Police and the Army have deployed officers to investigate the series of shootings and have started to comb the area around the site of the attacks.Indonesian Defense Minister Juwono Sudarsono asked people to refrain from speculating on police rivalry in comments to the Jakarta Foreign Correspondent's Club Wednesday, as quoted by the Associated Press. But he noted that "rouge elements" in the military might have had a hand in the unrest.
Official visits wounded police officers in Timika

Markus Makur , The Jakarta Post , Timika, Papua | Thu, 07/16/2009
Secretary to the Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs, Lt. Gen. Romulo Simbolon, visited Thursday five police officers wounded during a series of attacks by unidentified gunmen near PT Freeport Indoneisa’s Grasberg gold and copper mine in Mimika, Papua. Papua Police chief Insp. Gen. Bagus Ekodanto accompanied Romulo during the visit at Mitra Masyarakat Hospital in Timika.Romulo denied claims the perpetrators of the attacks were trained soldiers.
Three people, including Drew Nicholas Grant, an Australian employed by Freeport, died in the spate of attacks between Saturday and Wednesday. The five police officers were injured in the latest attack.No gunfight was reported Thursday as Mobile Brigade and counter-terror police personnel continued their manhunt and secured the access road to the mine, preventing Freeport employees from commuting to work. The police have begun wearing bullet-proof vests in anticipation of further attacks.

A number of journalists are waiting for a media conference, in which Bagus and Freeport officials will brief them on the latest developments of the investigation into the attacks

Source : Antara, 07/16/2009 | National

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