Indonesian police attack headquarters over text message

INDONESIA - Dozens of Mobile Brigade (Brimob) officers vandalized the Sabhara quick response unit's headquarters over a text message.

The Brimob officers had departed from Brimob headquarters in Srondol, South Semarang, plainclothes, and forced their way into Sabhara headquarters. They broke glass and assaulted on-duty officers.

The enraged officers then fled the scene after they realised that they had alerted around 100 Sabhara officers in other parts of the headquarters. Several Sabhara officers were found with bruises but no fatalities were reported.

Central Java Police chief Insp. Gen. Dwi Priyatno directly went to the scene and tried to settle the problem. He regretted the conflict, saying that the Brimob officers should have been able to settle their conflicts in an alternative manner.

"This all started with a text message, which the Brimob members thought was making a mockery of them. We have been able to identify those involved in this conflict from both groups. They are now being questioned by the Internal Affairs interrogators," he said.

National Police deputy chief Comr. Gen. Nanan Soekarna, who was in Semarang, said the police would be impartial in tackling this case. He then promised that those found guilty would be firmly punished.