Military member kills Papuan man in Namblong, Jayapura – 958 non-Papuan residents evacuated in fear of ethnic violence

A military member reportedly ill-treated and killed Mr Daud Bano, 35, in the Karya Bumi Besum Village, Namblong District, in the Jayapura Regency on 1 January 2024. The incident was witnessed by Mr Yehuda Bano, 34, who was also mistreated and sustained bruises after being beaten by the perpetrator during the same incident. The killing triggered the outbreak of ethnic tensions between the indigenous land rights holders and the migrant community in Karya Bumi Besum, which had been relocated in 1974 as part of the government’s transmigration program under former dictator Suharto. The social conflict between Papuans and non-Papuans was never resolved as the indigenous land owners never received compensation for the land provided to the migrants from the government until today. Following the incident, indigenous Papuans burnt down houses and stores in an act of revenge for the killing.

According to the information received from the Papua  Council of Churches (DGP), the incident was triggered as Mr Daud Bano and Mr Yehuda Bano went to a shop in Karya Bumi Besum and begged the non-Papuan shop owner for cigarettes. Both men were reportedly intoxicated after drinking alcohol while celebrating New Year. The shop owner refused to give them cigarettes. The incident was witnessed by a military member, who reprimanded and punched Mr Daud Bano and Mr Yehuda Bano multiple times in the face. Mr Daud Bano ran outside the store, grabbing a wooden beam while the military members reportedly drew a machete, and both men started to fight. The military member reportedly hit Mr Daud Bano twice on the neck after he fell on the floor. He died on the spot as a result of blood loss.

Afterwards, the military member holding the machete ran after Mr Yehuda Bano. Mr Yehuda Bano fled through the barbed wire fence and ran to the village to tell his relatives about the incident. Shortly after, Mr Yehuda Bano returned with five Papuan villagers to the crime site. Meanwhile, non-Papuan residents had gathered in front of the road, carrying swords, machetes, self-made rifles, slingshots with arrows (“Panah Wayar”), spears, and wooden beams (see videos below).

Police and military members had arrived at the location. They began evacuating 958 non-Papuan residents to the nearby police and the army post in the neighbouring Nimbokrang District in an attempt to prevent an outbreak of ethnic violence between the groups. Seeing this, the Papuan men returned to the village and mobilised more villagers. When the villagers returned to the site of the crime, they began setting houses owned by non-Papuans on fire. The relatives took Mr Daud Bano’s body first to the hospital and later to the mosque in Karya Bumi Besum (see photos below), where they decided that the body should be buried the following day at the soccer court.        

Mr Daud Bano’s body was buried at the soccer field in Karya Bumi Besum Village on 2 January 2024 at 4:00 pm.

Mr Daud Bano’s body during post-mortem examination at the hospital and in the mosque

Armed non-Papuans, police, and military members gather at the site of the crime shortly after the killing

Houses of non-Papuans in Karya Bumi Besum Village being set on fire  

Detailed Case Data
name of the location: Karya Bumi (2.594349440001561, 140.22535733587696)
administrative region: Indonesia, Papua Province, Jayapura Regency, Namblong District, Karya Bumi Besum Village
total number of victims: two
period of incident: 01.01.2024
perpetrator:  other security forces
perpetrator details: one military member, name unknown
Issues:  torture, extra-judicial killings, indigenous peoples
Further HRM News:

NumberName, DetailsGenderAgeGroup AffiliationViolations
1Daud Bano male35indigenousill-treatment, execution  
1Yehuda Banomale34indigenousill-treatment