New Zealand negotiates with Indonesia to rescue pilot taken hostage in Papua

New Zealand negotiates with Indonesia to rescue pilot taken hostage in Papua

8 Feb. () –

The New Zealand government has announced on Wednesday that it is negotiating with the Indonesian authorities to free a New Zealand pilot who would have been taken hostage by separatist forces from the Indonesian region of Papua.

New Zealand Prime Minister Chris Hipkinks has indicated that New Zealand officials on Indonesian soil are working on the case, radio station RNZ reported.

In addition, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is providing support to the pilot’s family, without the country’s authorities providing further details about the incident for the moment.

The West Papua National Liberation Army (TPNPB), the armed wing of the Free Papua Movement, has claimed responsibility, noting that the New Zealand pilot has been arrested and taken hostage because of his stance “against the unitary state of Indonesia”. as collected by the Suara Papua portal.

The TPNPB spokesman, Sebby Sambom, has indicated that the hostage will not be released until New Zealand and other countries are “accounted for” for militarily supporting the Indonesian Army against the Papuan population.

“On this basis, the pilot will be a guarantee for the United Nations, Europe, the United States and Australia to speak because those who sent war teams to Indonesia trained them to kill us for 60 years,” he declared, as reported by the magazine Indonesian Tempo.

Indonesian government security forces have been accused for decades of human rights abuses in Papua, a region that was incorporated into Indonesia in a UN-administered vote that rights groups and pro-independence activists criticized as a sham. . For this reason, there has been a separatist insurgency in Papua since the 1960s.

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