Security Forces Are Undaunted to Distribute Food Aid in KST-Prone Areas of Papua
Currently the people of Papua are waiting for food aid from the government because they are hit by a drought due to the effects of El-Nino winds. The security forces, as the vanguard of state securities, are ready to help distribute this aid to areas prone to KST attacks (Separatist and Terrorist Groups). With the help of the apparatus, the people are grateful and hope that the help will come on time.
As we know, in the middle of the year there was the El-Nino wind phenomenon which caused drought in several regions in Indonesia, including Papua. To anticipate and help residents in Cendrawasih Land, the government is providing food assistance, so they don’t experience food difficulties. The people of Papua who live in mountainous areas receive priority because they are experiencing the most severe drought.
Agandugume District and Lambewi District, Puncak Regency, Central Papua, experienced a drought which put the people in these locations at risk of starvation. The drought that hit Papua was triggered by extreme weather with low temperatures, even without rain hitting Central Papua.
This condition has made the land in Papua dry since May 2023. The sweet potato and taro farmers experienced crop failure and the local people ended up lacking food supplies to the point of starvation. They are forced to eat root crops that have rotted due to crop failure, as a result they are again exposed to diseases such as diarrhea, fever, mouth sores, and headaches.
After the drought disaster that hit the people in Puncak Papua Regency, the government immediately responded very quickly. Through the Ministry of Social Affairs (Kemensos RI) and the TNI, the distribution of aid in the form of food ingredients was carried out directly to the disaster site.
The Ministry of Social Affairs through the TNI has distributed a number of food aids in the form of groceries and other needed materials. It is hoped that this assistance will help the people of Papua so that they are not threatened with starvation.
Papua Police Inspector General Mathius D. Fahiri said the Agandugume and Lambewi Districts were classified as vulnerable because they were included in the crossing areas for the Armed Criminal Group (KKB) in three districts, namely Puncak, Puncak Jaya and Lanny Jaya. Some of the aid could only be sent as far as Sinak District because if you were going to other districts you had to walk or take a small plane.
However, people in other districts need not worry because assistance will still be provided. TNI Commander Admiral Yudo Margono stated that his party would be ready to oversee the distribution of food aid to areas in Papua that need it. Even though there is potential for attack, his party is not afraid.
It is undeniable that the potential for security disturbances from KST Papua is indeed threatening factors coming from the KST led by Egianus Kogoya, but the security forces will ensure that they escort aid to reach the victims and no aid is taken by elements who irresponsible.
The assistance that arrived was in the form of groceries and other basic materials which were distributed to the Sinak District as the main command post, then distributed to Lambewi District and Agandugume District on foot. This method is considered safer and can reach the people in these districts.
When distributing aid in a conventional way (for example by bringing a car/truck or airplane) it is feared that it will attract KST’s attention. They were afraid they would shoot down the plane so they were afraid there would be civilian casualties. Therefore, the TNI and Polri are collaborating in order to secure residents and provide assistance to those in need.
Meanwhile, according to Kapendam XVII/Cenderawasih Colonel Kav Herman Taryaman, the local government and local security forces were forced to ask drought-affected residents to take aid to Sinak.
In a sense, this method is a middle way for the people of Papua to receive assistance from the government, without risking KST attacks. The reason is because KST can come and steal aid in the form of food, if they see a car or plane that is suspected to belong to the government. After stealing, they were afraid that KST would shoot and cause victims from Papuans.
KST is actually getting more and more pressed for position and it is known from the frequency that they leave the forest more often than usual. They steal food and money belonging to Papuans because they feel hungry in the forest. KST became even more violent because they not only committed robberies, but also vandalized and attacked.
Therefore, if there is assistance from the government, they are afraid they will hear about it and then prepare to block the vehicles belonging to the TNI. Even though the security forces were not afraid of exchanging fire with the KST, the security forces avoided causing civilian casualties. Therefore, they continued to carry out escorts even though they had to distribute aid on foot. The security forces are friends of the people and the TNI and Polri and the State Intelligence Agency (BIN) collaborate in maintaining security in Papua, as well as helping distribute food aid. The people of Papua really need this assistance so they are not threatened with starvation because their area is hit by drought. Officials are always loyal in escorting and ensuring that everything goes according to procedure, without any fear of KST attacks.