Armed Criminal Groups officially declared “terrorists”

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Deputy VII of Indonesian National Intelligence Agency (Badan Intelijen Negara – “BIN”), Wawan Hari Purwanto

IO – Groups previously designated as Armed Criminal Groups (“ACG”) are now formally declared as “terrorists” by the Indonesian National Intelligence Agency (Badan Intelijen Negara – “BIN”). This designation is given after an ACG killed the Head of Regional BIN of Papua, Brigadier General (Dec.) I Gusti Putu Danny Karya Nugraha. “Gunfire was exchanged when a Papua Separatist and Terrorist Group intercepted and attacked the Regional BIN Head’s entourage,” said Deputy VII of BIN Wawan Hari Purwanto on Monday (26/04/2021).

The Beoga region of the Regency of Puncak, Papua, has been a hot zone for Separatist and Terrorist Group activities for quite some time. In April 2021 alone, such groups killed citizens and destroyed buildings.

On Sunday, 25 April 2021 at 15.50 WIT, Brigadier General Putu with a joint BIN, Army, and Police team were on their way to Dambet Village to inspect the scene of a recent arson attack that destroyed homes in the village as well as the local Elementary School. They were ambushed by an armed group and a gunfight occurred around Dambet Village church, Beoga, Puncak. “This hostile action resulted in victims among the BIN Task Force, with the Regional BIN Head of Papua getting hit with a shot in the back of his head,” he said.

Brigadier General Putu will be interred in Kalibata Heroes’ Cemetery, South Jakarta. He was a hard-working, reliable achiever. “Brigadier General I Gusti Putu Danny Karya Nugraha was known as a warm and brilliant man. He worked hard and he was close to the people in the locales of his duty. Regrettable and painful as it is, dying in the field of duty is actually the highest pride of all who

work in intelligence,” he said.

The BIN Task Force is still on the chase. The National Papua Freedom Soldiers-Free Papua Organization (Tentara Pembebasan Nasional Papua Barat-Organisasi Papua Merdeka – “TPNPB-OPM”) has claimed responsibility for the attack. “The Management of the TPNPB National Commission’s Headquarters has received reports that the Head of Papua Regional BIN, Brigadier General I Gusti Putu, was hit with a ‘stray shot’ from the TPNPB. TPNPB, under the leadership of Major General Lekagak Telenggen is responsible for the shooting of the two members of the Indonesian National Army,” said TPNPB-OPM Spokesman Sebby Sambom on Monday (26/04/2021).

Sebby went on to add that the term “stray shot” is sarcastic in nature: “That was definitely NOT a stray shot. TPNPB has been aiming and targeting for that shot. We are being sarcastic, as our sharpshooting was reported as a stray shot by the Indonesian Army and Police,” he said.

Separately, the Police declared difficulties in eliminating ACG from Papua. “The first obstacle is that the field of operations is not like in here (Jakarta). It’s a forested, mountainous area, which requires special resources for any action to be optimum. Second, these groups frequently infiltrate ordinary villages and pretend to be one of the locals. That’s their usual modus operandi,” said the Head of the Public Service Bureau of the National Police PR Division, Brigadier General Rusdi Hartono, at the National Police Criminal Investigation Department Office on Monday (26/04/2021).

However, Rusdi assures us that ACG has no place in Papua. “The security forces, i.e., the Army and the police, constantly exert our best efforts to arrest and stop these armed criminal groups and resolve the problems that they cause. One thing for sure, there is absolutely no place for ACGs in Papua. Again, with the help of local citizens and other agencies, the Army and the Police are working the hardest to resolve problems relating to armed criminal groups in Papua,” he said. (eka)