PNG border crackdown detains 14 suspected of OPM links

(RNZI) The head of Papua New Guinea’s join security forces operation in Sandaun province around the border with Indonesia says 14 detainees are suspected of being members of the militant separatist group, OPM Free West Papua.

Operation Sunset Merona has been underway for three weeks with more than 100 people arrested and detained for alleged illegal movement across the border from Indonesia.

Commander Jerry Frank has dismissed claims his security forces have ransacked the homes of innocent people in Sandaun, and denies the Operation is doing the dirty work of the Indonesian military in pursuing OPM members.

He says around a hundred Papuan detainees could face charges for being in PNG without permits, while the suspected OPM members could face other charges too:

“But we’re looking at (them) having been operatives as soldiers here, and likewise involving training of OPM activities here and other related offences after investigations are complete.”

Commander Jerry Frank

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