Merauke , Jubi ( 16/2 ) – An investigation team consisting military, police and border officers will travel to Karu waters off Papua New Guinea to look for five people missing in an attack blamed on PNG naval officers and find out the truth about the incident.
Eleven days after the incident, five fishermen – Alex Tjoa, Ferdy Tjoa, Robi Rahel, John Kaize and Fikra – still have not been found.
The Head of Regional Border Department of Merauke Regency, Albert Muyak told to reporters at Lampu Satu Beach on Saturday (15/2) he is still awaiting an official permit from Papua New Guinea.
“I apologize to the victims’ families for the delay in the search operation because we must have an official permit first from the government of Papua New Guinea,” he said. He added that so far the focus had been on the boat-burning incident.
He admitted it was difficult to conduct the search since the fishermen had been missing for 10 days.
“Yes, we will investigate whether the PNG soldiers burned their boat,” Muyak said.
He said that the five survivors will join the team to the location to explain the chronology of the incident to be analyzed and matched with findings on the ground.
He said PNG patrol ships are usually marked with flags and lights on both sides.
“We will do a test to ensure its compliance. We have prepare some facilities including personnel to travel to the scene after getting an official permit from the government of Papua New Guinea,” he said.
Separately a member of victims’ families, M Rumangun, said he supports the initiative of the government. “It’s true that until now the missing persons have not been found. But the families are prepared to accept the reality,” he said. (Jubi/Frans L Kobun/rom)