Papua rebels fire at aircraft in Indonesia; 1 dead

January 28, 2019 GMT

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — Separatists opened fire on an aircraft carrying military personnel and local government officials in Indonesia’s easternmost Papua region, killing one soldier, the military said Monday.

The incident, in Nduga district where rebels killed 19 people in an attack last month, happened shortly after the light plane took off from Kenyam airport Monday morning, said Muhammad Aidi, a military spokesman.

He said two soldiers on the plane were injured and one later died in a hospital.

The chief of Nduga district and two other district chiefs were passengers on the plane, which was transporting supplies to another remote area.

The rebels fled into the jungle after soldiers on the ground opened fire and it was unclear if any was killed, Aidi said.

An insurgency has simmered in the Papua region since it was annexed by Indonesia in 1963.