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West Papua: Military Execute Pastor in hunt for OPM

Note: This happend back in September but due to remotness of West Papuan Highlands news often takes a while to filter through. Due to the church connecton of the victim we are getting news of this incident, however summary executions are by no means unusual. - SSP (Brighton)

The murder of Reverend Elisa Tabuni by KOPASSUS Indonesian Special Forces on 14 September 2004

By WPNews Dec 7, 2004, 14:21

On the 14th of September 2004 the special task force of KOPASSUS returned to the village of Guragi. The purpose was to search and arrest or shoot Goliat Tabuni [Free Papua Movement - OPM independence fighter] The KOPASSUS task force could not find Goliat. Instead, they met Reverend Elisa Tabuni and his son who was also a preacher (reverend). The KOPASSUS soldiers questioned Elisa about where Goliat was. Reverend Elisa replied that he did not know.

However, the KOPASSUS soldiers arrested and handcuffed reverend Elisa Tabuni and his son with army belts. As they walked, the KOPASSUS soldiers questioned Reverend Elisa and his son about a Bible verse from Romans 13 which says that government is the representative of God.

Reverend Elisa Tabuni and his son could not answer the question because they did not understand and speak only a little Indonesian. As a result of not answering the question, KOPASSUS shot dead Reverend Elisa Tabuni while his hand was still tied with an army belt.

His son escaped and saved his life. He then became the eyewitness to the incident.

Reported by:
Revd Socratez Sofyan Yoman, MA (General Chairman of Papuan Baptist Church)