WANAPOMPI, TruePapua.com – The Indonesian military is mourning the death of Major Jhon E de Fretes in a shootout with OPM group believed to be led by KosmosMakabori in Namunaweja, Mamberamo Raya, Papua (30/11).
The incident happened when Major Jhon de Fretes along with Second Corporal Simon Sopacua and Second Corporal Muhammad Affan went on an inspection to Namunaweja to ensure security measures for the upcoming local elections. On location, they were intercepted by an OPM group, who did not heed the words of Major de Fretes that he was a pastor and their arrival was only for an inspection.
Major de Fretes’ greeting was responded by shots fired towards the three military personnel. Second Corporal Simon Sopacua and Second Corporal Muhammad Affan managed to escape, while Major de Fretes was killed on duty. Major de Fretes body was directly flown to his hometown in Magelang, Central Java.
EtisNehe, the late major’s colleague while studying at a school of theology, said John was known as an amicable person. “He was a year ahead of me. Physically he was tall as a typical Ambonese. My first impression was surprised that for an Ambonese he was soft-spoken. He was very friendly and well dressed, and spoke like a Javanese” said Etis Nehe.
Clash between Yapen Police and Armed Separatist Group
A day after the Mamberano incident, Tuesday, December 1, 2015 at 07.30 WIT (Indonesia Eastern Time), KampungWanapompi, District Angkaisera, Yapen Islands Regency, an armed clash occurred between members of the Police Resort of Yapen Islands under the leadership of Adj. Police Commissioner Imam Komari with an armed group lead by Erik Manitori.
The clash occurred when 25 personnel of the Police Resort Yapen Islands, using three cars and a truck, conducted a routine patrol in Wanapompi village.
When police personnel arrived at Wanampompi, Angkaisera District, they were confronted by an armed group equipped with sharp tools and weapons. The armed group deliberately ignored police’s warning to back off, instead, they started to open fire towards the police. Cross fire was inevitable, and the police finally succeeded in pushing back the armed group into the forest.
The police pursued the group into the forest and found two bodies with gunshot wounds believed to be members of the armed group.
The autopsy conducted by doctors at Serui Hospital confirmed that the two victims were Erik Manitori and his ADC Julian Robaha, who were both killed by a gunshot wound to the body.
In further sweeping, the police also found various firearms, homemade firearms, ammunition, Morning Star flag and communication tools.
Erik Manitori was a leader of GSP / National Liberation Army / OPM group of East Yapen and also members of the West Papua National Liberation Army (WPNLA), the military wing of the West Papua National Coalition for Liberation (WPNCL).
It was believed that Erik Manitori were in intense communication with KosmosMakabori, the culprit behind the Membramo incident a day earlier, that killed a military liaison officer. Both of the shooting incidents happened in different locations.