30 Sep 2003

Indonesian army conduct live fire exercise in populated area of the province of Papua

6:27 am on 30 September 2003

The Indonesian army is conducting a three day live-fire exercise this week in the province of Papua.

Villagers in the area of West Biak have asked the army not to carry out the exercise in a populated area.

A spokesperson for Kontras Papua, the West Papua commission for the Disappeared and Victims of Violence, Dorus Wakum , said the military had already begun a sweeping operation arresting people and going door to door to urge the local population to support a unified Indonesia.

An army spokesman recently said that TNI troops needed to prepare themselves for operations in Papua if the situation became critical.