1 Jul 2019

Search for missing West Papua helicopter with 12 onboard

2:24 pm on 1 July 2019

Indonesia is deploying several aircraft to West Papua in an expanded search for a dozen military personnel who went missing on a helicopter flight.

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Photo: 123RF

Rescue efforts are focused on the mountainous Pegunungan Bintang regency on the Papua New Guinea border, where the chopper was last seen on Friday.

A military spokesperson, Muhammad Aidi, said four helicopters and a surveillance aircraft are being sent out today.

The deployment will build on more than two dozen people who are assisting in a ground search near the regional capital Oksibil.

Last year, eight people died in a private aircraft when it crashed near Oksibil, leaving a 12-year-old boy as the disaster's sole survivor. New Zealand's Transport Accident Investigation Commission later assisted with investigations into the crash.