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TNI/Polri in West Papua: How Security Reforms Work in the Conflict Region

From: Indonesia
Number 95, April 2013
pp. 93-124 | 10.1353/ind.2013.0002



This essay examines the military and security reforms in West Papua, a conflict-ridden region in Indonesia. It finds that Indonesian security forces, especially the army and police, have built up their troops and territorial structures rapidly in the last ten years. It also finds that the police have taken a broader role in maintaining security. However, a closer look at the security operations reveals that the army is still the most powerful and influential force at work in the region, and that it operates exactly in the same manner it operated in East Timor and Aceh. The essay concurs with some studies that indicate reform within the Indonesian military has stalled. More importantly, the argument shows that the behavior of the army's officers has not changed despite claims that the TNI has reformed in response to complaints regarding the violence perpetrated in East Timor and Aceh.