Rebel group in Indonesia’s Papua to release kidnapped New Zealand pilot

Rebel group in Indonesia's Papua to release kidnapped New Zealand pilot

JAKARTA: On Wednesday ( Feb7 ), a rebel group in Indonesia’s Papua announced that it would free New Zealand pilot Philip Mehrtens, who had been held hostage in the far-off eastern part of the country for the previous year.

It was not known when Mehrtens may be made available.

Terianus Satto, the West Papua National Liberation Army’s ( TPNPB) chief of general staff, stated in a statement that the pilot will be released in order to defend civilization and human rights.

A request for comment was not immediately answered by the New Zealand department of trade and foreign affairs.