Papua is better and relatively safe now
Jayapura, Papua (ANTARA) - Chief of the National Police, General Tito Karnavian, said that the situation in Papua is far better than it was a few days ago, following riots that engulfed the easternmost Indonesian province.

"Papua is better and relatively safe now," he said, following a closed-door meeting at the Papua Provincial Police Station in Jayapura on Tuesday night.

Karnavian said that he, along with Chief of the National Defense Forces (TNI) Air Chief Marshall Hadi Tjahjanto came to West Papua and Papua provinces to observe the issue and to hold a dialogue with stakeholders. "I and the TNI Chief came to Manokwari and Sorong, West Papua, and Biak and Jayapura, Papua. Of course, we responded to the incidents in Malang and Surabaya which sparked demonstrations in Manokwari, Sorong and other places," he said.

"We have just returned from Biak and are now in Jayapura. In principle, the situation is far cooler now although there are still several instances in some areas. We thank God that the situation in Sorong and Manokwari is safe now," he said.

Early last week, thousands of people in West Papua's capital city of Manokwari had demonstrated to express their ire over the alleged racist action against Papuan students in Surabaya and Malang, East Java. They had set fire to tires in several parts of the city and the main streets.

The rally was also reported in Jayapura, the capital city of Papua Province.

Asked about the measures that the security agencies had taken to deal with the impact of the incidents in Malang and Surabaya, he said the police had held dialogues and conducted law enforcement.

"We continue to make efforts and take steps both through dialogues and law enforcement," he said.

In Manokwari, West Papua, Karnavian said he had held dialogues with Governor Dominggus Mandacan and other stakeholders.

Earlier, the police chief and the military chief held a closed-door meeting with chief of the West Papua Provincial Police Inspector General, Rudolf A Rodja; Commandant General of the Army's Special Elite Troops (Kopasus), Major General Chantiasa; Chief of Staff of Cenderawasih Regional Military Command, Brigadier General Irham; among others, to discuss the latest situation in Papua and West Papua.

Translator: Alfian Rumagit/Suharto
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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