21 Oct 2011

Three more fatal shootings near Papua's Freeport mine

5:17 pm on 21 October 2011

The US miner Freeport McMoRan says gunmen have killed three people near its Grasberg mine in Indonesia's Papua region.

Initial reports from government authorities indicate that gunshots were fired by unknown men on a lowland access road, killing a contract worker and two others who were not employees.

The company has been hit by sabotage, blockades and a strike for pay increases by about 8,000 workers, which is in its second month.

Last week, a similar attack nearby was carried out by unidentified gunmen who shot dead two men brought in to maintain the mine operations.

Another person burned to death inside a car.

It is not clear if the shootings are linked to the dispute or to a simmering independence movement in the region.

According to Reuters, a mine worker says a pipeline carrying copper concentrates is leaking.