West Papua Insurgency and Other Bloody Tragedies

West Papua Insurgency

The return of Papua to Indonesia in 1963 left several problems. West Papua insurgency is a nightmare that is still happening.

Moreover, this province is also not rapidly changing and developing following the progress of other regions in Indonesia.

Observing West Papua Insurgency

The process of political integration in Irian Jaya faces a major and formidable challenge, namely the West Papua insurgency.

The Free Papua Organization (OPM) rebellion began in 1965, to be precise, on 26 July in Manokwari.

As a separatist movement, the OPM rebellion is an obstacle to the integration process in Papua. There are also various forms of West Papua insurgency.

In addition to acts of armed physical resistance or military action, there were also hostage-taking and intimidation.

Apart from that, there were also demonstrations of raising Bintang Kejora flag, political meetings and the formation of local struggle organizations.

Furthermore, the border crossing action into Papua New Guinea also caused a rift in relations with PNG.

West Papua insurgency occurs because of the dissatisfaction and disappointment experienced by humans in a political system or country. However, OPM rebel activities are sporadic.

West Papua Tragedy

Civil and military uprisings and some of these conflicts were also recorded in the dark history of the Indonesian nation. The followings are bloody tragedy that occurred in Papua:

1. October 2000 Wamena Tragedy

On 3 October 2000, some leaders in Jayapura claimed to have succeeded in revoking the ban on the Bintang Kejora Flag, a symbol of Papuan independence,

By the government of President Abdurrahman Wahid alias Gus Dur.

The raising was also carried out. Three days later, the security forces launched operations at seven command posts that raised Bintang Kejora flag around Wamena.

2. The Wasior case in June 2001

On 13 June 2001, in Wonoboyo Village, Wasior, four civilians, namely Daud Yomaki, Felix Urban, Henok Marani and Guntur Samberi, were declared dead.

They were allegedly killed by security forces who carried out extrajudicial killings.

In addition, 39 people were tortured during this event, and 5 people forcibly disappeared. This case is classified as a serious human rights violation.

However, until now, the case not been follow up by the Attorney General’s Office.

3. April 2003 Wamena Incident

The Wamena incident occurred in April 2003. At that time, several people broke into the weapons depot in Wamena and made off with 29 firearms and 3,500 bullets.

This incident killed two TNI and one of the attackers.

Apart from that, they also burned people’s houses, churches, polyclinics, and schools which caused residents to flee.

4. Tragedy of Cendrawasih University in March 2006

Serious human rights violations occurred again during the reign of Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono in March 2006.

Prolonged demonstrations related to PT Freeport Indonesia‘s rejection of the land of Papua. Dozens of victims died, both the students and the security forces.

5. Paniai Tragedy December 2014

After only a few months in office, President Joko Widodo directly confronted with a case which was later categorize as a gross human rights violation.

On 7-8 December 2014, there was a shooting incident by Paniai residents at the Paniai football field.

6. Massive Demonstration Against Racism 2019

Many acts of racism against Papuan students in Surabaya and Malang, East Java, have sparked anger among the Papuan people.

Demonstrations also took place on a large scale in the Land of Papua and Jakarta.

Demonstrations led to riots in Manokwari, Fakfak, and Mimika. A week later, the riots spread to Deiyai and Jayapura, Papua.

The government even limited the internet network in Papua under the pretext of limiting the flow of hoaxes.

7. The Murder of Pastor Zanambani

The murder of Pastor Yeremia Zanambani in Intan Jaya, Papua, occurred when the armed conflict between the OPM and security forces in Intan Jaya was heating up.

Before Yeremia’s death, two TNI members shot dead by OPM.

An investigation by Komnas HAM and the Joint Fact Finding Team (TGPF) formed by the government found the involvement of TNI members in the West Papua insurgency incident.