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By: Marco Soares) *

One Papuan activist, Natalius Pigai, for some time stated that “the Indonesian government and state actually understand that the TPN-OPM organization is a fighter for independence, not a terrorist.” From this statement, it seems that it confirms the acts of violence that have been carried out by the TPN-OPM which have been occurring so far and makes it difficult for the Papuan people to carry out their daily activities, run normally as usual. In fact, the TPN-OPM has carried out various acts of terror and violence in various places in Papua.

Natalius Pigai’s statement is a dangerous accusation and much needs to be clarified, because all of the accusations made by Natalius Pigai are not based on facts and tend to be subjective. If this is not clarified it will result in disintegration of the nation, because in fact, according to BNPT data from 2010-2020 there have been 204 cases of terror acts with 1869 victims, as many as 365 innocent civilians died. Therefore, it is very clear that the series of actions carried out by the TPN-OPM group fall into the category of acts of terrorism in accordance with the Terrorism Law in effect in Indonesia.

Literally terrorism is an act that uses violence or violence that causes terror by expanding fear in society. In the contemporary era, especially in our beloved country Indonesia, there have long been violence and acts of terror of terror like what is currently happening in Papua, so that there is discomfort in the Papuan community itself.

As stipulated in the Law of the Republic of Indonesia No. 5 of 2018 concerning the eradication of terrorism, article “12A” explains that (1) Any person who with the intention of committing the Criminal Act of Terrorism in the territory of the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia or in other countries, plans, mobilizes, or organizes the Crime of Terrorism with people who and / or overseas or foreign countries, shall be punished with imprisonment for a minimum of 3 (three) years and a maximum of 12 (twelve) years.

The content or meaning of the Law of the Republic of Indonesia above seems very clear that the series of actions carried out by the TPN OPM group have fulfilled the elements of terrorism, because they have used violence or threats that create an atmosphere of terror or widespread fear that can cause mass casualties. and or cause damage or destruction to vital strategic objects, to the environment, public facilities or international facilities with ideological, political and security motives.

Then, Pigai’s statement which said that “the struggle and liberation of the TPN-OPM was recognized by the United Nations (UN)”. This statement is a form of provocation to the public to follow and believe what he said. If Pigai’s statement is based on the recognition of the United Nations, then that is a misconception and the statement is uttered without logic. The statement will also generate multiple interpretations that have the potential to lead to a major domestic conflict.

As a means of diplomacy to show its existence to the international community, TPN-OPM uses the United Liberation Movement West Papua (ULMWP) organization. But in fact, there is a disagreement between the OPM and ULMWP. This has happened since 2018-2019, when the OPM did not agree with the formation of the West Papua Army (WPA). Then the method initiated by ULMWP was to kill civilians and then accuse the security forces of being the perpetrators. This aims to attract the sympathy of the international community and to withdraw the support of Pacific countries for their struggle to separate Papua from Indonesia, which was fading.

The next fact is that the UN Assembly has designated Papua Irian Jaya (Papua) as part of Indonesia after the 1969 referendum was held, therefore it is very unlikely that the UN will make two decisions on the same matter. Therefore, when viewed from various aspects such as Papuan society, territory, government and international law and recognition, there is no clear legality and legitimacy to support and recognize illegal institutions such as ULMWP.

Currently, the main approach that has been taken by the government is a comprehensive approach to how to convince the Papuan people that the state is here to improve their quality of life. Then, against these armed groups which are now called terrorists, a security approach has also been taken so that they do not threaten the lives of civilians and the apparatus. By declaring the KKB a terrorist, the handling of the group in the future will be better. The security approach is one way to stop violent actions that have been threatening the safety of the community.


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