NOTE: Misread the date on this article — original is from 2009. It is, however, true that there has been a massive troop build-up elsewhere in the highlands to displace more people for further resource extraction by multinationals like Freeport.
Source: The Jakarta Post
Around 600 Indonesian Military (TNI) soldiers have arrived in Timika, Papua, to help local police guarding areas near PT Freeport Indonesia, where deadly shootings occurred in recent months.
Papua Police spokesman Sr. Comr. Agus Rianto told Antara news agency Tuesday that the soldiers were from Cendrawasih Military Command in Jayapura, and Timika’s Air Force Base, Navy Base and Infantry Battalion.
The soldiers would join 1,320 police personnel in guarding the mining company, he said.
In July, shootings occurred at the intersection between the town of Timika and Freeport’s Grasberg mining site, killing an Australian employee, an Indonesian security guard and a policeman.
More shootings disrupted the area in August, seemingly aimed at workers of Freeport.
Agus said that security has become increasingly tight in the area, but authorities remain cautious.
Coordinating Minister for People’s Welfare, Aburizal Bakrie is scheduled to visit the mining area later on Tuesday. Aburizal will meet with local TNI and police chief, as well as public leaders. (dre)