Jakarta (ANTARA) - The University of Indonesia (UI) Medical School’s several alumni, currently doctors in Papua, urged the central and regional governments to ensure the paramedics’ safety and security to be able to optimally serve those in need.

To this end, representatives of the Association of the UI Medical School's graduates had brought to the notice of the Health Ministry’s authority their doctors' demand for security and safety, Dean of the UI Medical School Professor Ari Fahrial Syam noted.

The UI Medical School alumni, currently working in Papua, vowed to continue to serve the people in Indonesia's easternmost province in spite of Wamena's recent deadly riot that had killed 33 innocent civilians, including a senior medical doctor, he stated in Jakarta on Thursday.

Speaking in connection with the current situation in Papua, Director of the West Papua Public Hospital Dr Andreas Pekey Sp. PD remarked that the situation, by and large, is not as tense as several parties might have been concerned, so doctors assigned in the province need not be fearful.

Pekey also strove to convince his colleagues by affirming that native Papuans respected paramedics and teachers coming from outside Papua to work for them.

Subhan Rumoning, an internist graduating from the UI Medical School, also made attempts to convince his colleagues that the indigenous Papuans have high respect for the paramedics, and their position was also perceived as being at par with that of district heads.

"The Papuan community members also safeguard the houses of paramedics, who have helped and treated them," Rumoning, originally hailing from Fakfak District in West Papua Province, stated.

The Papua provincial administration has vowed to ensure the safety and security of working paramedics throughout the province after a senior medical doctor was killed following the riot and exodus of working paramedics in Wamena.

Secretary of the Papua Provincial Administration Hery Dosinaen noted that the provincial government had coordinated with the commander of XVII Cenderawasih Regional Military Command and Papua police chief.

The Indonesian Doctors Association (IDI) had earlier appealed to security agencies and other related stakeholders as well as community members to guarantee the safety and security of the working paramedics across Papua.

Their safety and security are of importance to enable them to work optimally, Chairman of IDI-Papua Chapter, Dr. Donald Aronggear, told Antara in Jayapura September 26.

Aronggear noted that all paramedics in Papua were grieving over the death of 53-year-old doctor Soeko Marsetiyo during Wamena's deadly rioting that broke out early this week.

Following Marsetiyo's death, several doctors at the Wamena public hospital had requested leave from the hospital, which was comprehensible, as they too are humans and seek a sense of security, he stated.

Wamena's deadly rioting broke out during a rally that native Papuan students had staged on September 23.

A total of 33 people, including a medical doctor, were killed, while at least 77 others were injured owing to the riot that had also compelled several thousand residents, mostly non-native Papuans, to take refuge.

The masterminds behind this deadly riot are allegedly members of the West Papua National Committee (KNPB), according to National Police spokesman, Brig. Gen. Dedi Prasetyo.

The dead and wounded constituted non-native Papuans, who had been assaulted by rioters brandishing machetes and arrows. Related news: Paramedics working in Papua need security guarantee: IDI
Related news: Refugees in Wamena told to return home


Translator: Aditya R, Rahmad Nasution
Editor: Suharto
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