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Police Chief Calls Acehnese To Surrender Illegal Firearms

BY DEDEK & SALMAN

Banda Aceh, (TAG) – The Aceh police chief Ins. Gen. Iskandar Hasan Tuesday issued an ultimatum to Acehnese who still keeping firearms and explosives illegally to immediately surrender to local police forces in the province by February 20.


Iskandar Hasan
“To those who still keeping and concealing the illegal weapons, ammunition and explosive divices should hand over to the police in the region by a grace period of Februari 14 to 20,” he said in the ultimatum.
The ultimatum was declared during thousands joint military and police forces parade at the provincial police headquaters to secure a long-awaited local polls to choose governor, four mayors, and 13 districts’ chief scheduled April 9.
“To the (Acehnese) people who still possessing, keeping or hiding firearms, ammunition and explosive illegally not surrender by the time limit, it will be used as the evidence of crime,” Aceh police chief mentioned.
Quoted the Indonesian emergency law, intimation says that sanction to the suspects could be death penalty, life imprisonment or 20 years sentence. In the edict that distributed to journalists, having illegal weapons would result in a form of tortures, extortion, theft and murder.
Iskandar urged the Acehnese to provide information secretly if they know anyone still possessing and concealing the weapon illegally. “If someone knows, please inform us. The identity of informant will be kept strictly confidential,” he said.
Aceh is an Indonesian province located on the northern tip of Sumatra island, that experienced 29 years of armed separatist conflict that claimed more than 25,000 lives – mostly civilians – until a historic peace agreement was reached in 2005, has scheduled simultaneous elections for a new governor and 16 local leaders on April 9.
The Aceh elections had initially been scheduled to take place last November, then rescheduled twice on December 24 and February 16 but got derailed when Aceh Party which dominates provincial and some districts legislatures threatened a boycott in response to a Constitutional Court ruling in December 2010 allowing independent candidates to run.
The Aceh Party is a local party founded by former members of now-disbanded Free Aceh Movement (GAM) rebels. The party registered its candidates to run on the local elections after Constitutional Court in January ordering the Aceh Election Independent Commission (KIP) for the second time the reopening of registration window for candidates who missed out on the previous period.
The up-coming polls has been marred by a spate of unresolved shootings and fire-bombings that claimed nine civilians since last December. Analysists and some Indonesian House Representative have warned that the cases politically motivated and should not be treated as normal crimes.
Aceh police received some 43 weapons, dozens grenades and more than 7,000 ammunitions from residents in the province last year. All those believed to be weapons of the conflict that still being kept by the locals. The Aceh police chief Iskandar last month said he predicted some 800 to 1,000 firearms still being kept illegally in the hands of Acehnese.[]


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