Bogor, W Java (ANTARA News) - Indonesias senior security minister, Wiranto, said here on Thursday that there were limits to negotiations over the hostage-taking incident in Timka, Papua.
"What is the use of continuing the negotiations while our personnel keep falling?. Will we let our soldiers die in vain just because we want to continue negotiating," he stated at the Bogor State Palace.
An armed criminal group has taken 1,300 civilians as hostages in Banti and Kimbeli kampongs in Tembagapura, Mimika.
He noted that the joint security forces have so far prioritized persuasive actions in an effort to free the hostages.
The police have also spread leaflets by helicopter to call on the hostage takers to surrender and stop committing crimes such as torture, rape, or murders.
The regional police have revealed that so far, there has been no sign from the group of settling the problem peacefully.
They again notified them on Thursday, through community, religious, and government figures, to be willing to negotiate and allow the people to leave Banti and Kimbeli.
"In view of that, if the Indonesian security forces, comprising of police forces helped by military forces, later conduct strong and firm actions, then it must be understood as a necessary taken to fight the criminal group. Their action has been categorized as a crime that must be settled firmly by the law," he explained.
Security forces have kept avoiding any provocation intended to create chaos in Papua, he added.
Wiranto called on foreign parties to avoid accusing security forces as having acted arbitrarily in dealing with the case.
Source: ANTARA News