Papuan Armed Group Using Village Funds to Buy Weapon: Cartenz Peace Ops
TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The Carstenz Peace Operation Task Force revealed that the Papuan armed group or KKB, Free Papua Organization (OPM), obtained money to purchase weapons through the government’s village funds.
The task force spokesman Sr. Comr. Donny Charles Go said that investigators are handling several cases regarding the source of illegal guns for the separatists. Those arrested said they managed to purchase black-market firearms from village officials.
“There was the arrest of perpetrators who had guns and ammunition. They said the source of the money was from village officials,” Donny told Tempo on Friday, June 9, 2023.
Apart from being given by village officials, Donny explained that there were also cases of robbery of village funds. “The perpetrator [of the robbery] is KKB and had been caught. The perpetrator admitted that [the funds] were used to buy guns,” he added.
The task force head Sr. Comr. Faizal Ramadhani told Reuters that 40 percent of illegal firearms cases investigated by the authorities involved village funds.
Previously, the task force arrested the district head in Kenyam, Nduga Regency for providing financial assistance to OPM. It is not known yet whether the perpetrator, MM, siphoned village funds to buy guns for OPM. yet MM was found to use his salary and profits from selling fuels to help OPM.
“Based on the suspect's statement, he [helped OPM from] profits from the fuel sale and his salary as district head,” said Donny Charles Go on May 8, 2023.
Donny also said that the district head was a member of the West Papua National Liberation Army (TPNPB-OPM).
EKA YUDHA SAPUTRA | REUTERS
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