West Papuan guerrilla fighters are vowing more attacks on the trans-Papua highway that the colonizing Indonesian regime intends to use to intensify their control of the region.
The threat was made in a video recorded last week in the Nduga area of Papua province’s central highlands. The video and photos show about 40 fighters, a few with Indonesian military assault rifles and other weapons.
In the video, a man standing next to a liberation army commander, Egianus Kogoya, reads out a statement that taunts the military for being unable to find the Papuan fighters even though they’re in the same mountainous area.
Kogoya, who also speaks in the video, said, “We cannot step back; we will not hesitate; we would pursue (military and police) until Jakarta gives us independence; our nation must unite to separate from the Republic of Indonesia.”
Indonesian forces have poured into Nduga since insurgents killed 19 invaders, involved in the building of the trans-Papua highway, on Dec. 2.
Since the early 1960s when Indonesia annexed the formerly Dutch-controlled territory, West Papuan insurgents have fought against colonizing Indonesian authorities.
Discrimination against indigenous Papuans and abuse and murders by Indonesian police and military have drawn renewed attention globally, and revolutionaries around the world have expressed solidarity with the West Papuan people and insurgent fighters.
An Indonesian human rights lawyer, Veronica Koman, and a Papuan activist, Victor Yeimo, addressed the council earlier this month. They said 25 civilians have died as a result of military and police security operations in Nduga since the Dec. 2 attack.
Papuan fighters seized weapons from Indonesian soldiers in a Mar. 7 gunfight in Nduga that killed three soldiers and at least one Papuan insurgent.
The statement read out in the video said the liberation army recovered three Indonesian-made SS-2 assault rifles during the March attack. One such weapon is visible in photos as well as a first-generation SS rifle.