Armed group terrorize farmers in Papua

The Jakarta Post , Jakarta | Tue, 05/26/2009 1:17 PM | National

An armed group is terrorizing farmers in the Tanah Hitam hills in Abepura, Papua.

Muharang, one of the farmers, told reporters that a group of men armed with arrows and bows came to him while he was picking tomatoes. He ran away but was chased.

“There were around 20 of them. I managed to hide under a tree and they surrounded me. Then my cellphone rang and they left me,” he told Antara state news agency.

Abepura Police and Papua Mobile Brigade personnel later came to search for the group, but to no avail.

Abepura Police chief Adj. Comr. Dominggus Rumaropen said that due to security issues the police have ask local residents to indefinitely stay away from the hills and their farm.

“If they really have to, better go in groups.”

Previously on Monday, local police had combed the same area following a shoot out incident with an armed group.

The police have yet to confirm whether the armed groups were part of the separatist Free Papua Movement (OPM). (dre)

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