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Jakarta Post

Wamena riots not the result of ethnic conflict, says Papua governor

  • Syofiardi Bachyul Jb

    The Jakarta Post

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Wamena, Papua   /   Mon, October 21, 2019   /  09:38 am
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Rows of shops remain abandoned on Oct. 8 following a fire that burned through them on Sept. 23 in the Pikhe area of Hubikiat district, Jayawijaya regency. (JP/Syofiardi Bachyul Jb )

Papua Governor Lukas Enembe has claimed that riots that broke out in Wamena, Wijaya regency, were not the result of conflict between Papuans and non-Papuans, adding that the province’s indigenous residents had tried to protect visitors and migrants from rioters.  "I’ve heard so many stories of Papuans protecting non-Papuans during the incident," Lukas said.  Riots broke out in Wamena on Sept. 23 after a student protest turned violent. Authorities have blamed armed separatist groups for stoking the unrest and sending its members into the small town to attack people, destroy public facilities and set buildings on fire. At least 32 people died, most of whom were residents who had moved to Papua from provinces such as West Sumatra and South Sulawesi. Nearly 800 buildings were destroyed and burned down and over a hundred vehicles damaged.  More...