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Gunmen attack missionaries’ chopper

March 27, 2013

Gunmen attack missionaries’ chopper

The Jakarta Post | The Archipelago | Wed, March 27 2013, 9:41 AM
Unidentified gunmen fired shots at helicopter carrying two missionaries in Puncak Senyum in Puncak Jaya, Papua, on Tuesday. There were no fatalities in the incident, but two bullet holes were found in a window near the cockpit.

Amara, the director of the Papua branch of Helivida, a transportation service, told The Jakarta Post in Jayapura that the shooting took place at about 11:30 a.m. local time (9:30 a.m. Jakarta time) when the helicopter was en route from Mulia, Puncak Jaya, to Wamena, Jayawijaya.

“The front window near the cockpit had two bullet holes but luckily the shots didn’t hit the passengers sitting in the front seat. Perhaps God protected the passengers,” Amara said.

“The helicopter continued its flight to Wamena despite the attack,” he said.

The Bell 206 JetRanger helicopter with registration PK-HME was manned by a German pilot identified as Gunther. It was on a flight to pick up the two missionaries from Lumo village, a missionary post in the Papua central mountain range, before making a stop in Mulia.

“Helivida has been serving in Papua for 15 years, flying missionaries, but this is the first time we’ve been shot at. We work only for humanity and there are no other interests,” Amara said. “We hope there will be no more shootings in the future that could hamper our services in Papua.” — JP

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