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OPM Responds to Susi Pudjiastuti's Rage concerning Susi Air Pilot

8 May 2023 18:00 WIB

TEMPO.CO, JakartaThe West Papua Liberation Army of the Free Papua Movement (TPNPB-OPM) rejected a protest by the owner of Susi Air, Susi Pudjiastuti, regarding the detaining of Susi Air pilot Philips Mark Mehrtens. According to OPM, Susi is part of the colonialist.

“Susi is part of the colonial government that colonized Papua,” said TPNPB-OPM spokesman Sebby Sambom on Monday, May 8, 2023.

Previously, Susi expressed her anger at the hostage-taking of the Susi Air pilot during a phone call with a Papuan figure Pastor Karel Phil Erari. In the circulating call recordings, Susi was angry because the armed criminal group (KKB) opened fire on the Indonesian Military (TNI) troops who were trying to evacuate Philip.

Susi said she had never done anything bad to the people of Papua and considered the KKB's actions against the pilot unfair.

Susi said that she often helped the people of Papua by providing food, education, and medicine. Susi Air’s flights often helped serve transportation for the people. “[Susi Air] has been flying in Papua for almost 20 years, I have helped the community,” Susi argued.

Sebby considered Susi Pudjiastuti's statement and anger to be fabricated. He believed that Susi was part of the Indonesian government since she had served as Minister of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries. 

In addition, he asserted that the flights carried out by Susi Air were not aimed at helping the people of Papua but were part of a business to earn money in the region.

“So Susi thought that what she did was not colonialism? That's weird,” Sebby said.

Sebby also said that the pilot was also part of the occupiers and the TNI for pocketing a flight permit issued by the TNI Commander. “They are part of the Indonesian security force,” he added.

Sebby emphasized that Papua does not need Susi Air's help, as well as infrastructure or school development. According to him, Papuans can build their own infrastructure and schools when they are independent. 

“We don't need your airplane, we don't need development. If we are independent, we will build it ourselves with our money and natural wealth,” Sebby concluded.

M ROSSENO AJI

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