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Jakarta Post

Fears of communal clashes as rival groups face off in Papua

  • Benny Mawel and Ardila Syakriah

    The Jakarta Post

Jayapura and Jakarta   /   Fri, August 30, 2019   /  05:10 pm
The Jakarta Post Image
Thousands rally in Jayapura, Papua, on Aug. 19 to express their anger over racial abuse.(Antara/Gusti Tanati)

Tensions rose in Jayapura, the provincial capital of Papua, on Friday, as residents, many of whom are believed to be non-indigenous Papuans, took action against Papuan protesters who, the former claimed, had rioted during anti-Jakarta rallies in the city. Security sources confirmed that some residents had blocked roads and conducted sweeps against suspected protesters, with Papua Cendrawasih Military Command saying that it had prepared measures to anticipate any possible clashes between the groups. Jayapura Science and Technology University student Soleman Itlay, one of the protesters, told The Jakarta Post that a group of mostly non-indigenous residents had besieged Papuan protesters who had been occupying the Papua governor’s office since Thursday. The besiegers, who reportedly call themselves Masyarakat Nusantara (Archipelago Community), surrounded the building at ...