We have been running the healthcare center in Kampong Banti 1 over these past two years
Timika, Papua (ANTARA) - The Mimika district government in Papua province is planning to build a type D hospital in Waa-Banti village, Tembagapura sub-district, to improve the quality of healthcare services offered to local residents.

The type D hospital will replace the earlier hospital that was burnt down by Papuan separatist terrorists in March 2018, head of the Mimika Health Office, Reynold Ubra, said.

Due to the torching of the earlier facility, people living in Kampong Banti 1, Banti 2, Optimak, and Kimbeli could only receive medical services at a healthcare center in Kampong Banti 1, he said in a statement that ANTARA received here on Thursday, he informed.

"We have been running the healthcare center in Kampong Banti 1 over these past two years. Indeed, the number of medical personnel is relatively sufficient there," he said.

Though the healthcare center is operating out of a resident's home, locals can find doctors, nurses, midwives, analysts, and mobile health workers there, he added.

The hospital that the armed Papuans destroyed in 2018 was built by PT Freeport Indonesia and managed by the Amungme and Kamoro Community Development Agency (LPMAK/YPMAK), he said.

ANTARA has earlier reported how public healthcare is one of the crucial issues in Papua, and health workers stationed in the eastern province have repeatedly been assaulted by separatist terrorists.

On September 23, 2019, Dr. Soeko Marsetiyo, 53, was killed in a deadly riot that broke out in Wamena during a rally by native Papuan students.

The riot, which occurred in the capital of Jayawijaya district, claimed the lives of at least 29 other civilians and left 77 others injured. It also forced several thousand residents, mostly non-native Papuans, to seek refuge elsewhere.

At the time, the National Police had accused members of the West Papua National Committee (KNPB) of masterminding the violence.

Two years after the deadly riot, a female healthcare worker, Gabriela Meilan, fell victim to a brutal attack carried out by separatist terrorists.

On September 13, 2021, members of the Lamek Tablo-led separatist group reportedly torched several public facilities, including a public health center, and homes in Kiwirok.

The Papuan terrorists assaulted and tortured several health workers from the Kiwirok Public Health Center in Pegunungan Bintang district, about 230 kilometers away from Jayapura, the capital of Papua province, officials said.

Meilan died after being tortured by the terrorists, they added.

Condemning the attack on healthcare workers in Kiwirok, the Indonesian Medical Association (IDI)-Papua Chapter appealed to the Papua administration and the Indonesian Military (TNI) and National Police (Polri) to guarantee the security and safety of healthcare workers across the province.

The guarantee is a must to ensure the sustainability of medical and healthcare services for Papuan communities across the province, IDI-Papua chapter chairperson Donald Aronggear said.

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Translator: Evarianus S, Rahmad Nasution
Editor: Sri Haryati
Copyright © ANTARA 2022