by Mickey Kavera – EM TV, Vanimo
Indonesia maintains its military presence on a consistent basis on their side of the PNG-Indonesia border. But that is not the case for Papua New Guinea.
PNGDF military presence at the Wutung Border remains inconsistent, however, this does not mean PNGDF personnel are not carrying out their border operations.
They do so, but under difficult circumstances with very little support from the PNGDF Murray Barrack’s headquarters and the national government.
Logistical issues have affected their movement to the border, to effectively be stationed to monitor the area.
Soldiers from the 2nd Royal Pacific Island Regiment Alpha Company, based at Moem Barracks in Wewak, are currently on the ground for border operations.
They will be there for four months before another company takes over.
Most times, they have had to depend on other government agencies for support to perform their duties.
While much of their attention is on maintaining surveillance on land, maritime surveillance of the border between PNG and Indonesia is lacking.
They say most illegal activities such as smuggling of contrabands happen out at sea and out of watch of the military.
Because they do not have the logistics needed to carry out sea surveillance.
They are calling on the national government to take matters of border security seriously, and to provide them with the support they need.