Police Lose Track of Paniai Case Witnesses, Says Papua Police Chief


Jayapura, Jubi/Antara – Papua Police Chief Inspector General Yotje Mende said investigators have had difficulty uncovering the Paniai shooting incident that killed four civilians because witnesses were missing.

“The witnesses who report the incident are missing,” Mende said in the meeting with the religious and community leaders in Jayapura on Monday (23/2/2015).

He said the local police’s report said some residents reported about the shooting but when the police came to their addresses for questioning, they had moved. In addition, among 43 witnesses who already been questioned, none of them precisely knew about the involvement of police  in the incident.
“The Police are really facing difficulty to uncover this case. Moreover, autopsies on dead victims were not allowed (by their families),” he said.

He said the perpetrators could be the rebel group of Leo Yogi who mingled with hundreds of protesters and run away after the shooting.

In addition to that allegation, Mende said the police officers could be involved in the shooting but the lack of evidence and witness made this case difficult to reveal.


The shooting incident that killed four civilians in Enarotali on 8 December 2014 was trigged by the traffic problems, which followed with the attack on the local Military Command and Police offices. Four death victims are Yulian Yeimo, Simon Degei, Alpius Gogai and Alpius Youw. They were buried near the local Military Command office. (*/rom)

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