JAYAPURA, SUARAPAPUA.com — Brigadier General Egianus Kogoya, Commander of the Regional Defense Commando (Kodap) III West Papua National Liberation Army (TPNPB) Nduga, Papua, which is the military wing of the Free Papua Organization (OPM) revealed that he bought weapons and ammunition from the Indonesian military.
Egianus revealed that he bought ammunition and weapons from the TNI and Polri. According to him, the TNI/Polri sold because that is their way of looking for food by selling their weapons.
“If they don’t sell weapons they don’t know how to find food. They sold it so we bought them. We bought it because we needed it for our battle,” Egianus told suarapapua.com on Friday (24/7/2020).
He explained, usually they communicating with the subordinates in the field. After that, the subordinates [members of the TNI and Polri] continued the information to their superiors. After approval by the superiors, then the transaction is done. The superiors are the seller while his man is just a delivery man.
For weapons and ammunition, the transaction was the same.
“There are weapons that we bought. But the others weapons we seize during the contact with the TNI and Polri,” told Egianus.
As quoted from tirto.id, Amnesty International Indonesia, a non-profit organization that released a report on killings without being touched by law in Papua last year, urged the Indonesian Military (TNI) to search for buying and selling ammunition involving its soldiers.
“Imagine if the ammunition sold was used to attack the apparatus or even civilians,” Haeril Halim from Amnesty told Tirto, adding that the perpetrators must be brought to public justice and tried in a fair legal mechanism.
He considered the distribution of weapons and ammunition was a “very serious problem” especially in Papua because it involved guarantees of citizen’s security and legal protection. “There are many cases of human rights violations that have conflict dimensions in the area which involve the distribution of illegal firearms, both firearms, and ammunition,” Haeril said.
Khairul Fahmi from the Institute for Security and Strategic Studies said the sale and purchase of firearms, especially in conflict areas such as in Papua, is not new.
“The involvement of TNI personnel in firearms transactions in Papua is not surprising enough. That is not ideological. There are needs, funds are available, communication between the seller and the buyer, needs are available, then the deal is done,” Fahmi said.
Even so, of course, this cannot be justified, Fahmi added. “This shows that the level of discipline and loyalty of a number of our TNI members can still be defeated with money. Although I also suspect, other aspects must be considered, such as the possibility of coercion or even orders from persons of a much higher rank”.
“Has the TNI made improvements?” Fahmi asked, rhetorically. “Has the TNI improved so that cases like this do not repeat itself? How is supervision carried out? And considering that this was done by enlisted level soldiers, what was the leader’s responsibility? ”
Ammunition and Firearms Awareness Become Attention
On July 13, as broadcast by Noken Live, the Papua Police Chief, Inspector General Paulus Waterpauw said the circulation of firearms and ammunition continued and remained a serious concern of the security forces, especially in the Papua Regional Police.
“Laws regulate that only the TNI and Polri have the authority to store and use firearms. Then certain officers are specifically assigned. For example, specific police and custom duty. They are given certain authority within their area of duty,” he said.
But, said Waterpauw, some civilians who held weapons and ammunition and then committed criminal acts.
“Our brothers use firearms and carry out acts of violence against the law against their people and their leaders formally or informally and also to the parties there,” added Waterpauw.
3 Members of the TNI Selling Ammunition Fired
On February 2, 2020, a military court headed by Lieutenant Colonel M. Idris in Jayapura fired and sentenced three TNI members to prison for being proven to supply thousands of rounds of ammunition to armed criminal groups in Papua.
Serda Wahyu Insyafandi was fired and sentenced to life imprisonment. Defendants Private Okto PR Maure and Private Elias KS Waromi were also fired and each sentenced to 10 years in prison and two and a half years in prison.
“Proven legally and convincingly guilty of committing a crime without the right to hand over, carry and store ammunition,” said Judge Lieutenant Colonel Idris.
Reporter: Arnold Belau