24 Oct 2012

Indonesian police fire rubber bullets at pro-independence rally in Papua

10:07 am on 24 October 2012

Indonesian police have fired rubber bullets at students at a pro-independence rally in the region of Papua, in clashes that injured at least eight protesters.

Amid a combined military and police hunt for pro-independence activists, hundreds of police were deployed as around 300 people gathered outside the University of Papua in Manokwari.

Witnesses says a clash broke out with students hurling stones at the officers.

Police then fired rubber bullets on the crowd and four demonstrators were hurt, while another four were injured in clashes with officers.

The Jakarta Post reports five police officers and a journalist were injured, and eleven people were detained.

Rally organisers, the youth secessionist West Papua National Committee, or KNPB, said four people were shot at the protest and taken to hospital.