FAMILY, FRIENDS TO BURY THEYS IN WEST PAPUA ON SATURDAY

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JAYAPURA, Irian Jaya, Indonesia (November 15, 2001 - PINA Nius Online)---Secretary of the pro-independence Papuan Presidium Council Thaha Al Hamid said the body of its chairman, Theys Hiyo Eluay, would be buried in West Papua on Saturday.

He called for the release of the post mortem report and return of Theys's heart, the Jakarta Post reported.

"The post-mortem report should be handed over to Theys's family before the funeral. This means that Theys's heart should have been flown back from the final examination before the funeral," Al Hamid told The Jakarta Post in Jayapura, the capital of Irian Jaya province.

But he hinted that the funeral could commence on Saturday with or without the heart, which was reportedly being examined in an effort to determine the precise cause of Theys's death.

A reliable police source told the Jakarta Post that a senior team from Indonesian National Police headquarters in Jakarta arrived in Jayapura to join the investigation.

They are believed to have gone to the site where Theys was reportedly abducted, a hilly road between Jayapura and the small town of Sentani, where Theys was from.

Theys, 64, became missing on his way home from Jayapura late on Saturday after attending a military ceremony to mark Heroes Day. His driver, who is still missing, told the family in a brief mobile phone call that they had been abducted by a group of non-Papuans.

Theys's body was found the following day in his car, which had been ditched near a ravine. His face was darkened and his tongue was sticking out.

Al Hamid said that Theys would be buried in a plot of land belonging to his family in Sentani.

The land, previously used as a soccer field by locals, is part of a larger landholding belonging to the Theys family.

"The family has decided that part of the plot will be used for the burial of Papuan freedom fighters, and Theys will be the first," a member of the family told the Jakarta Post.

Police are reportedly anticipating large crowds of mourners.

Deputy chief of the Irian Jaya Police Brig. Gen. Rasiman Tarigan told the Jakarta Post that he would deploy a sufficient number of police officers to maintain order.

Despite the plan for Theys's funeral, many are still puzzled about the cause of his death, the Jakarta Post said.

The team of Jayapura doctors who examined Theys's body on Sunday concluded that he had choked to death. Dr. Kelemen Mayakori, the head of Jayapura General Hospital, said that there was no sign of strangulation or violence that could have caused Theys's death.

He did not say that some of Theys's internal organs had been removed for further examination under police supervision.

On Tuesday, Police confirmed that Theys's internal organs were to be sent to Makassar, South Sulawesi, for further examination at the Hasanuddin University's forensic laboratory to determine the cause of death.

But Professor Solihin Wirasugena, the head of Hasanuddin University's forensic laboratory, said that he had not received Theys's heart. "Do you think I would lie to you?" he told The Jakarta Post.

On Tuesday, a member of his staff, Dr. Mahmud, said that Theys's heart had been flown to the University of Indonesia's forensic laboratory in Jakarta, instead of Makassar.

Meanwhile, noted forensic expert from the University of Indonesia, Dr. Mun'iem Idries, denied that Theys's heart had already been sent to Jakarta.

"As far as I know, both the University of Indonesia's forensic laboratory and the National Police headquarters forensic department have yet to receive Theys's heart," Mun'iem said in Jakarta on Wednesday.

While the mystery behind Theys's death has yet to be resolved, the mystery behind Theys's missing heart is taking on a life of its own, the Jakarta Post said.

The process of taking out Theys' internal organs was reportedly carried out in accordance with the law.

Papuan Human Rights Advocacy Team secretary Latifah Anom Siregar said that the procedures were complied with. "Before the autopsy started, the police asked for the family's permission," she told the Jakarta Post.

The police are also still trying to trace the whereabouts of Ari Masoka, Theys's driver.

Pacific Islands News Association (PINA) Website: http://www.pinanius.org

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