Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Djoko Suyanto said the Sunday shooting of an airplane by a gang in Papua is an act of terror seeking to stop development in Papua.

"Such a crime must be stopped," Minister Djoko said at Halim Perdanakusuma airbase here on Monday.

The Twin Otter plane belongs to Trigana Air, which has been serving flight routes to remote areas in Papua.

"So far, the (Trigana Air`s) planes have never been disturbed. Trigana has been operating in Papua since I was posted there in the 1990s, and there has never been any disturbance. The planes are used to distribute logistics, such as food and fuel," Djoko said.

The armed group`s members must be investigated and arrested, he added, saying that such a crime must never happen again.

"I don`t care whether the perpetrators are members of OPM (separatist Free Papua Movement) or an armed group. For sure, they have committed a crime against the civilians in Papua and could hamper development in Papua," Djoko said.

The Twin Otter plane, flight code PK-YRF, was shot at as it was landing at Mulia airport, Puncak Jaya, Papua Province, on Sunday. Four people were injured and one killed in the shooting.

Also, the airplane`s pilot, Bebi Astekyang, was hit in the leg, while Latoge Kogoya, a reporter of Papua Pos of Nabire, was struck in the neck and died.

Co-pilot Willy was also hit by a bullet fragment in one of his fingers and was unable to control the flight, causing the plane to crash into a building at the airport.

A woman, whose identity has not yet been disclosed, was also hit in the hand. The shootings by the armed group left holes in the airplane.

"We are still investigating the case. We suspect an armed gang is behind this incident," National Police spokesman Senior Commissioner Boy Rafli Amar said in Jakarta on Sunday. ***1***


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(T.SYS/A/KR-BSR/O001) 09-04-2012 15:04:03

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