TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – The Head of Papua Regional Police Department Inspector General of Police Mathius Fakhiri said that the location of Susi Air’s pilot who was held hostage is situated in a nearly inaccessible area. “The leader of OPM Egianus Kogoya also constantly moves the hostage location in Nduga and Lanny Jaya, causing the police to have difficulty approaching the location. In addition, OPM always guards the hostage,” said Mathius in Jayapura on Monday, August 7, 2023.
Fakhiri said the government is still prioritizing negotiation and letting the local public figure, religious figure, and the hostage’s family persuade Egianus to release the hostage safely.
The hostage, Captain Phillips Mark Mehrtens, is a Susi Air pilot. He’s been held hostage since February 2023, after landing his plane in Paro, Nduga Regency, Highland Papua.
Information revealed that the Nduga Regent has met with Egianus, but the result of the meeting has yet to be disclosed. “We are still waiting for further information related to the meeting with Egianus’ group,” he said.
Fakhiri hopes that Egianus Kogoya is willing to release the hostage safely and without lacking anything. “We are willing to negotiate, but asking for independence and weapons is off-limit,” said Fakhiri.
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