30 Jul 2009

Indonesian police charge seven people over shootings in Papua

9:37 am on 30 July 2009

Indonesian police have charged seven people for alleged involvement in a series of deadly shootings at the Freeport gold mine in Papua.

Police said the seven, who include two Freeport workers, have been charged with murder and weapons possession.

An Australian technician, an Indonesian policeman and a security guard died in ambushes earlier this month near the mine.

The attacks have been blamed on separatist rebels, or locals who do not benefit from the mine.

At least 12 people, mostly police, were wounded in the attacks, which all took place on a long, winding road between the mine workers' housing and the mine itself.

The Grasberg mining complex, the world's largest gold mine, is operated by the US conglomerate Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold.

Meanwhile, police have found bullets and food stored along the road to the mine, and suspect the cache may have been intended for another attack.