Mon, 18 Sep 2000

Abducted police officer found dead in Bireuen

BANDA ACEH, Aceh (JP): A police officer from Jeumpa station who had gone missing since last Monday was found dead on Sunday morning, dumped at an intersection in Cot Gapu village, Bireuen regency.

"Pvt. Sofyan A. Gani was abducted by armed rebels in Cot Uno village on Monday," North Aceh Police chief Supt. Abadan Bangko said on Sunday, adding that the victim had been assaulted.

Abadan said Sofyan was abducted when he and his wife were riding on a motorcycle to visit his parents in Bireuen.

"They were intercepted by armed rebels, who later ordered his wife to return home," he said.

Meanwhile, a bomb and two grenades rocked a police station and a local religious affairs building in the restive province on Saturday, leaving five officers injured.

West Aceh Police Chief Supt. Arief Sumarman accused members of the Free Aceh Movement (GAM) of having thrown a grenade at the Kaway XVI Police station, injuring three police officers.

A similar incident took place earlier in the day at a traffic police post in Panton Labu area, North Aceh, leaving two duty officers injured.

Supt. Abadan Bangko said the suspects were two armed rebels on a motorcycle.

The explosions were the latest in a series of attacks on police buildings. Baiturrahman Police station in Banda Aceh was rocked by a homemade bomb on Monday. On Wednesday, Kutamakmur Police station was sprayed with bullets.

Also on Saturday, a homemade bomb exploded at a local Religious Affairs office in Meuraksa district, Banda Aceh mayoralty, damaging the door and shattering the windows.

On Thursday, a bomb exploded in a building housing the Environmental Impact Management Agency and the National Land Agency. On Friday, the Public Works Agency in Setui village, Aceh Besar regency, was set alight.

The police are claiming GAM guerrillas are behind the attacks. No arrests have been made

Separately, East Aceh Police chief Supt. Abdulah Hayati said that a Mobile Police (Brimob) officer and a civilian died, and seven others were injured, on Saturday evening, when a police patrol unit was ambushed in Paya Meuligoe village, Peureulak district, East Aceh regency.

"GAM members fired at three truckloads of 60 patrolling personnel passing through the village," Hayati said.

East Aceh GAM commander Abu Kalifah confirmed that the movement was involved in the attack, but said the police and military were conducting a military operation.

"We attacked the security personnel when they were launching a military operation in the village. Not patrolling," he said. (50/lup)