The Jakarta Post
Army's Special Forces (Kopassus) commander Maj. Gen. Doni Monardo said on Tuesday that the Military Police Corps was handling an investigation into a brawl in which a member of the Air Force died and three others were seriously injured.
"We won't cover up the case or protect our personnel against punishment. The Military Police Corps is carrying out a thorough investigation into the incident," said Doni, who took command of Kopassus in September.
A dozen Air Force personnel were reportedly attacked by more than 20 Kopassus members at Bimo cafe and karaoke parlor in Sukoharjo, Central Java, on Sunday night.
Mayor Sergeant Zulkifli died at Harjolukito Hospital in Yogyakarta on Monday and his body has been transported to Jakarta and handed over to his family for burial in Ciracas, East Jakarta.
Aside from conveying its deep remorse and apologizing for the killing, Kopassus will pay Rp 100 million (US$7,700) to the families of the victims.
Kopassus personnel involved in the killing are from the Group 2 based in Sukoharjo. The group specializes in jungle warfare, unconventional warfare, counter-insurgency and special reconnaissance.
The incident occurred amid Doni's ongoing reform in the force.
Under his leadership, Kopassus has strived to project a humane image in its interactions with civilians and other institutions to overcome the unit's gruesome history of extrajudicial killings of civilians.
Doni has also enforced stringent discipline and ordered all personnel to smile, greet and shake hands (3S) and avoid raging, glaring and punching (3M) to help the unit avoid conflict with the public and with other state institutions.
Meanwhile, in response to the incident, the Air Force's top brass has instructed all personnel to avoid discotheques, clubs and karaoke halls to prevent similar incidents from happening.
"There is also an instruction to all personnel not to consume alcohol," said Air Force spokesman Rear Marshal Dwi Badarmanto.
Dwi has denied that it was the Air Force personnel that started the brawl.
"We should just wait for the outcome of the investigation," he said. (ren)(++++)
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