TNI Chief Djoko Apologizes to Public for Papua Mutiny
Apr 30, 2009 01:49 PDT
The Jakarta Post [web site]
April 30, 2009
Military chief apologizes over soldiers’ violent protests
Indonesian Military commander Gen. Djoko Santoso apologized to
the public over the incident in Sentani, Papua, where soldiers
staged violent protests against their commander.
“The situation over there is under control. I regret it and
apologize to the public in Sentani who were disturbed by the
incident as well as to the media whose safety was in danger,” he
said, after meeting President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono in
Jakarta on Thursday.
The Jayapura army base erupted violently Wednesday as Battalion
751 Sentani soldiers protested over what they said was the theft
of their money.
The rioting began during celebrations of West Papua's
integration into Indonesia. Soldiers demanded the battalion's
commander, Lieutenant Colonel Labok Sihotang, be held
responsible for his actions.
Army chief of staff Gen. Agustadi Sasongko visited the battalion
Thursday morning, and Sihotang was immediately dismissed from
his position following the visit.
Gen. Santoso said the military would investigate the incident
thoroughly and would take legal actions against anyone violating
"Of course, there will be sanctions. Everyone involved will be
processed and tried,” he was quoted by Antara news agency as