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Jakarta Post

TNI shrugs off ‘unified’ West Papua Army

  • Gisela Swaragita and Benny Mawel

    The Jakarta Post

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Jakarta/Jayapura   /   Thu, July 4, 2019   /  11:46 am
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Hundreds of West Papua National Committee members (KNPB) and Local People Parliaments (PRD) holds a rally at Cendrawasih University, Papua, on May 2. (tabloidjubi.com via tempo.co/-)

The Indonesian Military (TNI) has shrugged off claims made by the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) that three armed groups had united in a “historic declaration” to create the West Papua Army. Papua’s Cendrawasih Military Command spokesman, Col. Muhammad Aidi, said the issue was “old news” and the TNI was not afraid. “They declare this again and again every year but always [fail to] face the military,” Aidi told The Jakarta Post via phone interview on Monday. Aidi said the military would not tolerate any act of rebellion in Indonesia. “Whether it’s one person or a group of people, especially by those illegally armed, we will fight them,” he said. “Militants commit acts of violence and kill military soldiers, too. But when the military defends itself, the militants stretch their political win...